The Benefits of Retirement Living

It’s a fact of life that every single one of us would inevitably grow up and become retired citizens. There are more elders who opt to live in a retirement community where they choose to be with people in the same age group and who share the same interests and living conditions as them. People in a retirement community have a certain kind of relationship similar to those who belong to a fraternity or sorority where camaraderie and companionship usually exist.

There are different kinds of retirement communities that can cater to the needs and interests of various senior citizens. Some communities offer facilities and amenities that other communities don’t provide. Despite the diversity of interests, financial capabilities and personal preferences of senior citizens, there is still a definite living arrangement out there that would suit their tastes and needs, for different retirement communities also vary from one another.

Choosing to live in a retirement community definitely has its advantages and benefits. One approach to expound on these benefits is by linking them to the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, a theory in psychology by Abraham Maslow that tries to explain the needs that every one of us has.

Physiological needs
Physiological needs are those things that are essential for a person to be able to live. These needs are obviously supplied in retirement communities. Shelter is provided for the residents and more often than not, the management or the authorities of the community are the ones who make sure that these shelters are well-built and well-maintained. Likewise, some communities provide food and drinks to their residents. It is obvious that at times, old people tend to be unable to prepare and cook their food properly thus making it beneficial for the seniors to stay in these communities. Moreover, they wouldn’t have to worry about the utility payments for water, gas, and electricity and the likes for the fees for these are usually already included in the rent.

Safety needs
Safety and security needs include personal security, financial security, health and well-being. For the most part, retirement communities have their own security in the premises to ensure that every resident is safe and free from harm that may come from the outside.

As for financial security, though one has to shed a big amount of money at the start, the investment in the long run would be worth it. The residents don’t need to worry about financial matters when they are already in the community. As mentioned in the first level of the hierarchy (Physiological Needs), the management and the authorities are the ones responsible in maintaining the area and providing utility services hence the residents need not bother about those financial matters. Moreover, if they are in some kind of insurance, the costs that they have to pay would be less since they are already in a safe community, making the occurrences of dangerous incidents less likely to happen.
The residents are still the one responsible for their own medical and health needs, however, to some extent, these communities still address health and well-being needs by having the access to nurses and other medical assistance.

Love and belonging, esteem, and self-actualization
These three are the topmost levels in the hierarchy of needs. They are relatively similar and living in a retirement community addresses these needs in one way or another. One basic characteristic of retirement communities is the socialization and interaction among the residents. Since retirement communities are designed for such purposes, it is foreseeable that everyone would be able to create bonds with one another, consequently, friendships and companionships are formed. This formation of close relationships with one another caters to the love and belongingness needs of a person.

As established, retirement communities have various facilities that can provide the residents a training ground to further hone their skills such as athletic or cooking skills. Through the social activities organized by the management, the residents could feel that they belong and that they are accepted in the group of people. This is especially seen when the activities prepared have the nature wherein one’s skills or talents can be showcased, like athletic activities or performing gigs. Furthermore, these facilities and social activities can give way for a person to satisfy the highest level of need in the hierarchy which is self-actualization. Self-actualization of one’s self is very subjective that’s why it is solely up to that person’s verdict on whether or not he/she has already fully addressed the need or not. Nevertheless, retirement communities offer services that can help the residents achieve their self-actualization.