The Need to Feel Accomplished
Human beings have a need to feel accomplished in life.
Whether it’s a kid marveling at his or her Lego tower, a teen excelling at school or sports, or an adult taking pride in their children or successful business, we all get energy from feeling ‘I did it!’
What makes you feel accomplished as a child, though, doesn’t make the cut when you get older. Your sense of accomplishment goes hand-in-hand with your increased capabilities and society’s expectations.
So while you may feel on top of the world after braiding your doll’s hair as a child, as an adult you’ll need to be managing a line of designer doll outfits to get the same effect.
Accomplishment Later on in Life
This trajectory often works fine until you get ‘old.’ As you age, your physical capacity starts to diminish, and your roles often change.
Then there’s retirement.
All these changes mean that the great feats that allowed you to feel accomplished in earlier years are no longer in reach. You’ve reached the pinnacle and now it’s time to retreat.
Accomplishment in a Different Light
As a society, we tend to value outcomes over the process it took to get there. We’re impressed with net worth, lavish lifestyles and awards. And we laud the ‘accomplished’ individuals who reached these levels of success.
Sure, we’ll speak about the tough journey they had getting there but only to highlight the outcome that was achieved despite the hurdles.
If this is how we view accomplishment, understandably, the seniors among us won’t feel too accomplished.
Helping seniors feel accomplished requires a paradigm shift. We need to reevaluate what we value in life, aside from outcomes and financial statements.
At Elmwood Hills Healthcare Center, for example, we value the small details of healthcare services. For us, adding our personal touch is an accomplishment.
If you value community life, for example, think about the character and life some of the seniors invested in shaping and developing your community:
- How does their character shape the environment?
- In which way do they make the community a better place for you and your family?
- Which ideals do they strengthen?
- How can you look up to them as role models?
Notice that these questions don’t focus on material outcomes. Sure, they may have built, raised funds, etc., but their eternal accomplishments are themselves.
How can you take part in helping seniors feel accomplished?
Which of your values does your loved one embody?
How can you let them know how accomplished they are and how their accomplishments are having an effect on your life?
Please share in the comments below.