Maybe you lost your job during the pandemic, or perhaps the fear that you might have you reconsidering your career options. Whatever your motivation, you’re seeking to switch gears or maybe choose a professional path for the first time. Have you considered elder care?
Elder care is the ideal occupation for many people who find life’s meaning in caring for others. You don’t necessarily need to return to school for a pricey degree, either. Here are just seven of the benefits to consider as you plan your future career.
1. You Have Many Options
Did you shy away from looking at elder care because you thought you had to be a registered nurse? Forget that silly idea! You have a ton of options. If you’re a fitness enthusiast, you can become a licensed Silver Sneakers instructor — your class members often grow as close as family. Other non-medical careers in elder care include:
- Activities Director: Nursing homes and residential care facilities often provide residents with activities, and they need folks to coordinate arts and crafts and bingo nights.
- At-home aide: Some adults prefer to age-in-place, but they need someone to check in on them and sometimes handle tasks like running them to the grocery store. You don’t need a degree, and this field always needs caring workers.
- Food preparation and delivery: Older adults deserve better than microwaved ramen. If you’re a chef, you can head the kitchen in a residential setting, or work for Meals on Wheels.
- Social work: Older adults have mental health needs, too. You can often find this type of work with a bachelor’s degree, and if you enjoy it, you can further your education.
2. You Get to Work With People
If you are a social butterfly, you will adore working in elder care. Working in a residential facility is the ultimate people business, as is at-home care. If you have lingering concerns about COVID-19, despite popular misconceptions, working in a nursing home is relatively safe due to the precautions they take to protect vulnerable residents. It’s much less dangerous than working in a pub full of unpredictable revelers, and you still get to banish your feelings of isolation.
3. You’ll Have Job Security
No matter what happens, the world will always need people to care for older adults. Like food and health care, senior care is a basic human need — you can’t get more essential. There is also a high demand for some positions, meaning that you can shop around for the most competitive pay and benefits.
4. You’ll Learn New Things
Older adults have a wealth of knowledge to share, but today’s fast-paced, youthful generations hardly pay them heed. However, when you get to know a favorite patient or resident, they’ll give you an inside look at historical events that they survived. Did you ever wonder how the world reacted when JFK was shot, for example? Many of your patients have this event seared into their memories.
5. You Exercise Your Creative Skills
If you were looking for an assembly-line job where you do the same thing day in, and day out, you’re in for a surprise if you make a move to elder care. Any profession that involves working with people comes with a degree of unpredictability. As a home care aide, you might drive one patient to a doctor’s appointment and then help the next with food prep for the week. You need to identify areas of need and creative ways to fulfill them — engage that imagination!
6. You’ll Meet New Friends
Working with older adults is fantastic. Sadly, many seniors suffer from severe loneliness, which can have a host of adverse health effects. If you have longed for someone to talk to for several months, you will find ample conversations on the job. Maybe your spouse brushed off your excitement about the pepper plant you learned to grow from seed during quarantine, but you’ll be the talk of the retirement center gardening club.
Plus, because most members of this population have endured various hardships throughout their lives, they tend to offer spot-on advice. They also have brilliant insights into the ways of the world — listen up. Finally, some have the most entertaining tales to share, and they will welcome the chance to tell them.
7. You’ll Make a Difference
What gives meaning to your life? Is it a ton of money or material possessions? If you prefer to leave your mark on the world by impacting others, elder care is the ideal position for you. Every day, you will go home knowing that you brought joy to the heart of at least one other person. That’s a fantastic thought to congratulate yourself on as you drift off to sleep at night.
Consider a Career in Elder Care and Reap the Benefits
Consider elder care if you want an exciting new career that offers unparalleled security and the chance to help others. You’ll enhance your life and make a difference in the daily lives of countless older adults.