We often tend to associate low self-esteem issues with teenagers and young adults, when we’re still trying to figure out our identity and where we belong in the world and with everyone around us. As we age, we generally become more comfortable with ourselves and don’t feel the need to change anything to fit in. In fact, evidence shows that people in general are at their most confident when they are middle-aged. However, it also shows a decline in self-esteem as we age into our senior years.
The importance of self-esteem
Self-esteem essentially refers to how you regard yourself – how much you value yourself or how much personal worth you believe you have. It can impact a lot in our day-to-day life, even if we don’t realize it. Our level of confidence and happiness can be greatly affected by our self-esteem, or lack of it, which then has a knock-on effect on things like motivation and job performance, both personal and professional relationships, decision-making and problem-solving, and much more.
Improving self-esteem among seniors
If you’ve noticed your self-esteem declining in your senior years, or if you’re looking out for the mental wellbeing of an older relative, then let’s look at some tips and strategies for increasing self-esteem among seniors.
Socialization is an important contributor to confidence and self-esteem at any age, and it can become more difficult to socialize as we get older, start to lose friends and family, and perhaps become less mobile. But it’s important to continue to make the effort to socialize for your mental wellbeing and self-esteem. If you don’t have many friends in the area, then you could try going to classes or social clubs, particularly those aimed at seniors, or you could volunteer locally to meet and interact with more people.
If you’re concerned about the self-esteem of a loved one, then visiting them or calling them more often can be useful. When you spend time with them, make sure to be positive, patient, and compassionate. Listening to them and showing an interest in their stories and the wisdom they’ve learned in their life can help them feel valued. This can help to shift the focus from potentially negative aspects of aging to more positive ones such as life experience gained.
Losing mobility and independence as we age can also have a big impact on our self-esteem. You suddenly have to rely on others and can’t do the things you used to do so easily. Adapting your loved one’s home or situation to their abilities can help them regain some control and independence in their day-to-day life, boosting their confidence in the meantime.
If a senior relative needs regular care or an environment such as independent living or assisted living, then making this change could be a big boost to their self-esteem. They’ll get the support they need to regain some independence, and be able to socialize regularly with other residents. Contact Brookstone of Clemmons to find out more about our assisted living facilities in Clemmons, NC.