It’s the time of year for resolutions. I will be more patient. I will start a workout regimen. I will eat healthier food. You know the drill. Most of the time, the motivation for these changes lasts a few weeks and fizzles away.
But this year, let’s try something different. Let’s make some hearing loss resolutions and stick with them throughout the year. Together, we can keep each other focused and make our plans a reality. Are you on board?
The New Year is always a good excuse to take stock and refocus on your goals and priorities. For many years I made the same resolution over and over again. It didn’t get me anywhere. But then I started thinking about resolutions more tactically and began scheduling them on my calendar.
For example: This year I will get healthier — OK, add a weekly yoga class to my calendar. Or: This year I will attend the theater more often — OK, buy two tickets to a new show. Add a reminder to my calendar to do the same thing in a month or two.
What can we add to our calendar for hearing loss? Here are some options. Which ones will you choose?
1. Wear your hearing aids consistently. Resolve to keep them in, even when it gets challenging. You have to give your brain time to adapt to the new level of sound. Put a daily reminder in your phone to prompt you to put them in and keep them in.
3. Get your hearing tested. Are you still wondering if you have hearing loss? Call and make an appointment with an audiologist right now.
4. Help others with hearing loss. Find hearing loss advocacy efforts in your community. Is there a locally based non-profit? A school for the deaf? Reach out to a local house of worship or community theater about looping or captioning options. Make an appointment to help out.
5. Tell people about your hearing loss. Send an email to friends or share an informative hearing loss post on Facebook. Get the word out so people can support your journey. Or tell one person or group of people a month. Put a notation on your calendar so you don’t forget.
6. Meet other people with hearing loss. Find a local HLAA chapter and go to the meetings. Put the meeting dates on your calendar now.
7. Explore new technologies. In NYC, the Center for Hearing and Communication holds a weekly demonstration of assistive listening devices. Is there something like that in your area? Add the dates to your calendar. If not, maybe your audiologist would be interested in starting one.
9. Educate others about hearing loss. Volunteer to speak at a local senior center about tactics for coping with hearing loss or share your experiences online. You might learn some new things too.
10. Take a speechreading class. This can only help your communication skills and might even be fun. Add the dates to your calendar. I am looking for a class in my area to try this year.
Readers, are you making a hearing loss New Year’s resolution?