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IRC Blog

IRC Blog
Posted: Wednesday, June 17, 2020
By: IRC Blog

The role Independent Living can play in our happiness

If you’re searching for how to be happy in retirement, the answer may be simpler than you think.

A study last year found that people who live in retirement communities are happier and sometimes healthier. Of those surveyed, over 50% of the residents said their quality of life was higher than a year ago. Of the nonresidents, only 19% said the same and more than one-third disagreed when asked if their quality of life had improved.

If you’re searching for how to be happy in retirement, the answer may be simpler than you think.

A study last year found that people who live in retirement communities are happier and sometimes healthier. Of those surveyed, over 50% of the residents said their quality of life was higher than a year ago. Of the nonresidents, only 19% said the same and more than one-third disagreed when asked if their quality of life had improved.

The study also found that residents were two-to-five times more likely than nonresidents to participate in activities, social events, spending time with friends and exercising.

How can retirement living make such a difference?

Most people consider the pathway to a great life to include having meaningful relationships and social activities to share, as well as maintaining a healthy diet and keeping physically fit. As we grow older, obstacles can get in the way of making this happen. But if you move to a retirement or Independent Living community, you’ll find all of those opportunities right outside your front door.

What research continues to find

Other studies have come to the same conclusions. Compared to those who remained living in their community at large, residents at a Life Plan community tended to show greater emotional, social, physical, intellectual and vocational wellness, according to the Mather Institute’s Age Well study.

The residents reported significantly more healthy behaviors and nearly 70% stated that moving to the community somewhat or greatly improved their social wellness. A sense of purpose was also significantly greater for the residents, as was their satisfaction with life.

What Independent Living offers

For those who continue to live at home in a traditional neighborhood, a happy life can also be found, of course. It just may be more difficult. Many people realize that as they grow older, their neighbors or friends have moved, they no longer have the social outlet from their career and if they no longer enjoy driving, it may not be easy to attend events or make it to the gym.

But if you’re looking at how you can fulfill your goal of living your best life possible, you might want to consider where this can more likely happen. Not all Independent Living communities are the same, but you’ll want to look for those who offer the following opportunities:

1. Create social connections

Making friends is almost guaranteed as you’ll be meeting your neighbors at community events or activities that are designed to be fun and gratifying but that also provides a natural setting for residents to get to know each other. Many lifelong friendships are formed as the residents share their similar experiences.

2. Participate in activities

It can even be more enjoyable when someone else takes on the responsibility to discover and create a full social calendar of things for you to do. The right community understands the diversity of their residents but also the common ground they all share. There will be something for everyone so all you have to do is pick and choose.

3. Easy options to exercise

The best communities offer a fitness or wellness center, complete with exercise equipment, weights, classes and a trainer who is there to make sure your workout is safe and effective. Whether you’re working on flexibility or strengthening your core, you’ll come to appreciate the opportunity, convenience and ease of staying physically fit.

4. Delight in delicious and nutritious dining

Imagine having the opportunity to take advantage of chef-prepared meals after a lifetime of making dinners. Or even for just those nights when you don’t feel like cooking but would still like to eat healthily. Your meals should be prepared by those who understand the benefits of nutrition but also know how to expertly combine that with the pleasure of eating delicious food.

5. Love your maintenance-free life

All of this and a maintenance-free life seals the deal for many retirees. If you’re tired of shoveling snow, mowing the grass, or arranging for all the repairs and upkeep for a home that always has a need, there is a solution. Moving to an Independent Living community can take care of everything so your time is truly your own to spend as you like.

Building a support system for life

It’s no wonder that those who take advantage of everything a retirement community has to offer will find themselves living a life that is full of fun, activity and meaningful moments, and that offers the extra security of knowing there is someone to reach out to if help is ever needed.

This is the time for life to be as free from worry as possible. It’s well-deserved freedom when you can let others take care of the day-to-day functions while you share a leisurely lunch with friends, go for a swim or attend a concert. After a long life of working, raising children and taking care of all the other responsibilities, it’s time for you to relax and enjoy.

Where and how we live matters

One of the reasons that people may grow happier as they grow older is because the years are incredible teachers. You understand what makes a truly meaningful life. You know how important relationships are. You know the benefits of taking care of your physical and emotional health. You are also much less likely to take things for granted and appreciate the value of having a good plan in place.

If you’re considering where you may best be able to enjoy your life, you might want to compare the options available at your current residence to what a retirement community has to offer. It’s a decision that only you can make but it can be fun to think of all the possibilities.

Ingleside at Rock Creek Independent Living

At our community, you’ll find many opportunities that provide the above fundamentals of an engaging and fulfilling retirement life. Focusing on the spiritual, emotional, social, vocational, environmental, intellectual and spiritual elements of your life, we support both the health of your body and mind.

Call (202) 905-0018 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a personalized tour today.



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