Group fitness classes, dances and holiday parties may sound fun to an extroverted person, but these activities might intimidate those who are introverted. In fact, many older adults postpone residency at a senior living community because they fear they won't fit in or enjoy the numerous socialization opportunities. Fortunately, many communities have activities for every personality type, whether you like playing bingo with a lively group of friends or painting portraits in a quiet setting. Before you decide community living isn't a good fit for you or an introverted loved one, consider these suggestions.
Dine During Quiet Times
Introverts can get overwhelmed by crowded environments, so look for a senior living community that offers flexible meal options. Residents should have the option to take food to their rooms or another part of the building or be able to request meals outside of traditional times. An introverted senior may benefit from a community such as Brightview Senior Living that serves refreshments throughout the day rather than at set times. This helps reduce the chances of snacking with a large, outgoing group of seniors when an introvert wants to eat quietly, either alone or with a few close friends.
Make Sure Activities and Programs Are Optional
Many senior living communities give residents an option to choose which activities interest them, and older adults aren't pressured to participate if they want to spend time alone. Before selecting a community, make sure there are no pushy staff members who may upset introverted residents with constant requests for participation. It's also good to find out which activities typically attract the most residents so you can plan accordingly. An introverted adult might feel comfortable joining a trio of residents for a daily card game but dislike a crowded aquatics class.
Look for opportunities that benefit yourself or an introverted loved one without requiring socialization. Some senior living communities have libraries, while others feature lush gardens and private walking trails. These amenities help introverts enjoy their surroundings without feeling pressured to interact with others.
Consider Rooming Arrangements
Rooming with another person may bother an introverted senior, so look for a community that offers studios or other options for residents who want to live alone. You may also want to consider whether porches and patios connect or how close the front door is to nearby neighbors. Seniors may also feel uncomfortable exiting through a crowded lobby, so consider a community with multiple exits.
Ask About Scheduled Services
Some senior living communities offer housekeeping services or require regular maintenance checks. Elderly adults often appreciate the help, but they may feel as if their privacy is violated when staff members show up unannounced. Look for a senior living community that schedules these services in advance or encourages staff to knock before entering a resident's home. You can also ask if it's okay to hang a Do Not Disturb sign on the door when a senior doesn't want company.
It's also important to find out how staff protects each resident's privacy. Is mail placed in a shared container or distributed to private boxes? Are names called over a loudspeaker when a visitor arrives, and can visitors access residents without prior approval? Some communities might not contact residents prior to sending visitors their way, and this can send introverts into a panic. Mention these concerns to the community you're considering and see if they have any potential solutions.
Moving into a senior living community may seem intimidating, but many introverted adults thrive at Brightview Senior Living. Learn more about how Brightview offers amenities for every personality by requesting a visit today.