I stumbled across this question in the coaching world, and decided to try it out on a few residents in the community. You see, no matter what stage someone is experiencing, a question like this – completely in the present tense – is one that connects.
First I asked this question to a resident who was in a bad mood.
Immediately she said “Nothing!”
So I prompted. “What about your grandchildren?”
“My grandchildren. (A smile creeps in) They are always happy. I feel very happy when they smile, and they play. Thank you.”
I loved seeing the transformation that took place in her demeanor once she thought about those two precious bundles of energy that visit here at The Kensington. She went from ‘go away’ to ‘thank you’– with a smile.
Other answers I got around the community are below (unedited). Maybe you see the same theme that I see?
What’s great about your life right now?
- “My children. They’re great. I love them.”
- “The grandkids. They’re good kids and they don’t cause any trouble.”
- “I’ve got a place to live. I get three meals a day. I’m clean. The help here is very nice. What else is there? My kids can’t take care of me, so I’m here.”
- “Just people.”
- “I have wonderful children. I’m happy living here.”
- “Me!” (Lots of laughter follows)
- “Having a clear mind. Being able to walk.”
- “The Republicans are coming back. That gives me hope for the future.”
When I step back from their answers, I see that at any age, we value relationships. People being with people. Family caring about each other. Love being shared.
I encourage you to try this one out sometime when you visit with a loved one or a senior. The smiles you’ll see are genuine, from a deep place within. What an honor it is to be able to bring those moments to the surface with those we love. What an honor.
– Susie Sarkisian, Director of Family Services