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By: Presbyterian Senior Living on

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Discover the Upside to Downsizing

Finance & Planning

UpsideDownsizingFor many people, the idea of downsizing seems daunting because of all the physical “stuff” they’ve collected over the years. Often, seniors continue to live in the family home where they’ve been for decades, and the sheer mass of items to sort through is enough to make anyone want to crawl back into bed and put the whole thing off until another day.

But dealing with the physical aspects of a move is just one part of downsizing. In fact, worrying about how to stop the influx of clutter and manage what’s already there can distract from even harder work involved in downsizing: the emotional aspects.

Finding the Best Part of Downsizing

The truth is, there’s a significant upside to downsizing: discovering a new, lighter way of living that lets you focus on relationships and experiences rather than possessions. Home truly is where your heart is, and your heart will be with your loved ones and dear friends, wherever you are. And by moving to smaller, lower-maintenance digs, you just may learn that there were some things you were ready to leave behind.

Discarding the Baggage

Your large house likely requires a significant investment of your time and energy. Would you really miss yard work, cleaning and climbing into the attic on a regular basis?

No resource is more valuable than your time. By downsizing, you free yourself from the time-sucking commitments that come with owning a large home. Instead, you can use that time for things that you enjoy, whether it’s learning a new language, socializing, traveling, dining out or getting fit.

Discovering Financial Freedom

Downsizing can free up considerable financial resources, which can provide you with more options for spending your time. When you downsize, you no longer pay to heat and cool rooms you never use. You may eliminate the need to pay for landscaping, maintenance, homeowners’ dues and property taxes. Those funds instead can go toward travel, continuing your education or even helping out your kids and grandkids.

Focusing on Relationships and Experiences

Social interaction and maintaining relationships are critically important for seniors. Once you’ve retired, socializing may become less frequent, and you may spend more time at home alone. Interacting with people is good for your health, as the University of Rochester Medical Center notes. Social interaction can provide a number of health benefits, including decreasing the risk for:

  • Some cancers, heart problems, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Mental health issues, including depression.

Getting out and doing things is also good for you. For instance, participating in lifelong learning activities — whether it’s learning how to dance, discovering Russian literature or improving your golf swing — can help improve your memory, keep your brain sharp and boost your self-confidence.

In all the years of caring for your family and maintaining your home, it’s likely that you didn’t give yourself much attention. You may find that by downsizing, you discover much more: the satisfaction and joy you can unearth by nurturing relationships and relishing new experiences.

Not sure where to start? We can help.

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About Presbyterian Senior Living

Presbyterian Senior Living is a not-for-profit organization, fulfilling its charitable purpose and mission by providing high quality retirement choices, healthcare services and affordable residential living options for people 55 and older for more than 85 years. Headquartered in Dillsburg, Pennsylvania, Presbyterian Senior Living provides services to approximately 6,000 seniors in 30 locations in the mid-Atlantic region of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Ohio and Delaware.

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