Serving the elderly requires energy and creative ideas to enhance stimulation in their every day life. When the caregiver shows up with a schedule of activities, it can bubble up a level of excitement within the elderly person. At first, the senior may resist but deep down most are bored and would love to be stimulated on something other than sugar. When an idea is presented with enthusiasm, who wouldn’t want to participate.
It is easy for a caregiver to get bored while serving the elderly if they are not motivated and inspired themselves. Each day is full of its own experiences, some good and some not so good. When we take the time to experience each part of the day, we become awakened to life itself and manifest joy even when the way may be difficult. We will never get to experience today again as it will be gone tomorrow, so let us strive to enjoy the brilliance of living every day.
Get excited as you plan your weekly set of activities for the elderly client you will be working with. Perhaps Monday is spa day, Tuesday is readers club, Wednesday is meditation time, Thursday is lunch out or picnic in the home if client is unable to travel, Friday is music day and the list grows and grows. Give each day a theme day and use your creativity to design the activity around the likes of the elderly home bound client.
Present with excitement in your voice the weekly schedule of activities and/or events to the elderly person you are helping. Be prepared to share with them how each activity will benefit them. The energy you present changes the atmosphere. You can change it with joy as well as sorrow. Have you ever been around happy people and found yourself feeling better ? How does it feel when you walk into a room where people are angry and complaining ? If you stay too long, you will soon find yourself upset about something.
Pro-active care-giving will change your life. We feel good when we live with a purpose. The better we feel, the better life gets. To be a joyful caregiver, it is important to take care of you first. Pay attention to your emotions and train your mind to think upon the things you do like and with consistent good feeling thoughts, you will have more and more good experiences.
Please use the chart attached for designing your week of fun.
By Shari Mercer, President
Heart Home Care
SAMPLE OF ACTIVITY / EVENT PLANNING FOR ONE WEEK
Saturday – Spa Day / Sunday – Meditation / Monday – Coupon Day
Tuesday – Game Day / Wednesday – Outing / Thursday – Music Day / Friday – Book Club
Spa Day – A time of pampering with soft music in the background, candles lit, fresh flowers on the table, hand and back massage, paint nails, Epsom foot bath, scalp massage, hair and make-up, present an inspirational quote, make this a day they look forward to
Supplies – CD or radio, candles, flowers, lotion, nail polish, Epsom salt, small tub, inspirational quote
Meditation – A one hour guided meditation to relax the mind / Silence the phone to avoid interruption / light candles and provide a comfortable space
Supplies – Guided meditation CD or make one up yourself, blanket to keep client warm while sitting still and candles
Coupon – Take the Sunday paper or current magazine and cut out recipes and coupons
Supplies – Sunday paper, current magazine, scissors
Games – Create an afternoon with giggles and games such as hang man, cards, painting, coloring, working a puzzle or doing something fun outdoors
Supplies – cards, paper, crayons, markers, pencil, pen, puzzle
Outing – Go out for lunch or to a site that interests the client / if client is unable to get out, make a picnic at home and pretend you are somewhere else
Supplies – Car, approved by agency to transport client, energetic attitude / if staying in, find pictures of an island, beach or mountains and talk about what it is like when you are there
Music – Get the number 1 hits from client’s era and sing along / put your dancing shoes on and let the chuckles be heard / get some facts about the artist and song to share
Supplies – A big smile, high energy, songs and facts
Book Club – Determine a good book the client will enjoy and read several chapters each week / at the end of reading time talk about the events in the book and characters
Supplies – book that clients likes