Listening is one of the most difficult skills to acquire, even for those who make a concerted effort to be more attuned to what people around them are saying. When you’re talking about assisted living with an aging parent, for example, how deeply are you listening to what he or she has to say?
Too often we get caught up in the concerns about safety, quality of life, and even the challenges we face taking care of our elderly loved ones that we push an idea and forget to listen.
March is International Listening Awareness Month.
This is an important reminder, a time of year when we can take a moment to realize just how important listening can be. Most of us can communicate quite well, but that doesn’t just mean talking, reading, or writing. It means listening, too.
When an elderly person is facing challenges in life — whether they are chronic health issues, limited physical ability, diminishing strength, etc. — assisted living can be a great option to consider.
Yet, in our push to help them realize the benefits of assisted living offers, we can get overzealous. That over-enthusiasm can cause us to push our desires onto them, even to the point of imputing what we believe is beneficial onto their ideals.
It’s time to slow down.
When you’re attempting to convince an aging parent, grandparent, or even your spouse that assisted living would be the best option for him or her at this time, take a moment to listen to their words.
How do we listen better?
When you bring up the topic of assisted living, give them an opportunity to respond. Do not get defensive, combative, roll your eyes, or do other similar gestures. That tells them you’re not interested in their opinion.
No, you may not agree with them, but that doesn’t make them wrong. This is a very serious topic to discuss and demands both parties participate in a dialogue.
Dialogue is back and forth, not one way.
Another way to listen better is to use a technique where the person speaking holds an object, whether it’s a pen, microphone, stuffed animal, picture, or something else and when they have that in their possession, the other person must remain passive and silent.
When we listen, we might just discover that some of the arguments against assisted living this senior has are based on misconceptions, a lack of information, or fear.
From there, you can make a reasoned, rational argument to help them understand why assisted living would be the best option for them moving forward.
For more information about assisted living in Hollywood Park, TX, contact Pipestone Place Assisted Living or to take a tour, call today (210) 718-0211.
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