When most of us think of the perfect Mother’s Day gift, we likely think of something like jewelry or clothing. But what about giving Mom something even more special—something that will enhance her well-being in a deeper way? Why not help her enjoy the rich benefits of downsizing her home? You’ll be helping her transition to a place in her life where she’ll enjoy less financial stress and less house-upkeep.
But helping Mom downsize can be easier said than done—both from a practical and emotional standpoint. Here are 5 ways to make it easier:
Reflect on the Emotional and Lifestyle Benefits
As you and your mom think about downsizing her home, it’s important to reflect on why it will be beneficial and to get in a positive mindset about it. Viewing downsizing as Mom’s pathway to a less expensive, less stressful life can be extremely liberating. So focus on the greater simplicity and freedom Mom soon will experience!
Proceed “One Gentle Step at a Time”
The practical steps of downsizing shouldn’t be rushed. So encourage your mom to take her time, and break down the downsizing process into “bite-size” pieces. Have her organize items into 5 distinct categories: (1.) Things to keep; (2.) Things to sell; (3.) Things to give to family members; (4.) Things to donate; and (5.) Things to throw away.
Embrace and Cherish the Memories
Downsizing—especially if your mom is leaving a long-time family home—can be a bit emotional. Many of her possessions undoubtedly will bring her cherished memories of family members, old friends, and favorite pets. So encourage her to strike the right balance as she sifts through possessions. Let her know that—if she really can’t bear to get rid of a few cherished items—it’s entirely okay to keep and enjoy them.
Tell Her “It’s Okay to Feel What You Feel”
As you and your mom move through downsizing, she may be surprised to discover the whirlwind of emotions she feels. She may even feel guilty about the RELIEF that downsizing brings! Just assure her that all her emotions are perfectly normal and valid.
Celebrate the Journey
Throughout the process, encourage your mom to keep reflecting on all the positive financial, emotional, and lifestyle benefits she is reaping by moving into a more perfect-sized home. Offer herself this wise advice: “Be good to yourself, celebrate the process, and offer yourself little rewards along the way.” For example, she might take some of the money she earns by selling items and buy herself something special, or perhaps donate to a favorite charity. This will make her downsizing journey even more enriching!