Remaining independent: Tips & tricks for creating good habits

Posted by fiesty76 @fiesty76, Jan 8 8:49am

Concerned because a neighbor has called three times in recent months to tell me my garage door had been standing open for several hours and was checking to see if I was ok. While very grateful for the calls and after the 1st call immediately posted a sign on my utility door as a reminder to “close door”, two more calls followed that 1st one.

I’ve lived alone in my home for decades. I’m 76 and still maintain my home and do my own yard work. While I’ve laughed for years that I have always been a bit scatter brained, I am also fiercely independent and not yet ready to relocate out of state near my daughter and into a sr living establishment.

I’m looking into installing a locking system for my automatic garage door but if I continue to fail to press whatever buttons required to close or engage the system, I will not be able to live alone in this house. Any suggestions or tips on how I can “train” myself to be Sure that garage is firmly down?

When you open the utility door to enter the house the garage should be dark as the door should be closed. Even if you are working in the yard and are in and out ~when you enter the house through the utility door close the garage door each time. It can be opened again and you have to form a habit. Good luck and God bless.

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Thank you, for this idea jo54. I have been standing in the utility doorway "most times" until the door closes all the way. It is those unaccounted times that I am worrying about. Maybe not paying attention to stand in the doorway or leaving it open thinking I'll be going out again but then don't go back out. I appreciate this tip. Just stand still until the door is down and light is off. If I can get in the habit to stand until the light goes each and every time, going back out later and hitting the button is a slam dunk. New Habit: I think I can…I think I …. Smiles

I did retrain myself a yr or two ago to put my key chain on a key link that fastens to my purse. Now before leaving the car, it goes on that key fastener…saves it dropping to the bottom of the purse and I always Know where it is. This is doable. Many thanks.

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Hi @fiesty76 — I'm forgetful sometimes too. We have a Liftmaster garage door opener with MyQ wi-fi technology so that I can open and close the garage doors with an app on my phone as well as the normal garage door opener in the house or car. One of the benefits is a small remote opener/hub/switch that is connected to my wireless router. It has a red or green light on it – when it's red it means a garage door is open and when it's green they're both closed. It's nice because I have it sitting in living room next to my bedroom and see it when I go to bed which lets me know if I forgot to close the garage.
https://www.liftmaster.com/myq

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@fiesty76 You have a good neighbor who does that, and keeps an eye on your well-being! We share two things in common. I have a neighbor like that, also. And I have left my garage door open 3 times in the nine months I have been here. It is a standalone garage. No problem if I use the manway door. The large rollup door, another issue. I mounted a remote next to the front door, to use. But sometimes I forget to hit the button as I come in [gotta greet the cat, an armload of groceries, etc.]. I cannot see the door from my front door, instead need to look through side of north-facing window. So I have tried to make that my habit, to look through that window late each afternoon. I can check to see the door is down, give the pretty flowers another glance, and admire the mountain in the distance.
You have had some great suggestions here. Looking forward to seeing what will work for you.
Ginger

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Install a light in your bedroom which will show if your garage door is open or close

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@tep

Install a light in your bedroom which will show if your garage door is open or close

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Hi @tep, Welcome to Connect. Thanks for the great suggestion. Have you done this? Just wondering if you bought a kit somewhere with instructions in case someone wants to try it themselves.

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@fiesty76

Thank you, for this idea jo54. I have been standing in the utility doorway "most times" until the door closes all the way. It is those unaccounted times that I am worrying about. Maybe not paying attention to stand in the doorway or leaving it open thinking I'll be going out again but then don't go back out. I appreciate this tip. Just stand still until the door is down and light is off. If I can get in the habit to stand until the light goes each and every time, going back out later and hitting the button is a slam dunk. New Habit: I think I can…I think I …. Smiles

I did retrain myself a yr or two ago to put my key chain on a key link that fastens to my purse. Now before leaving the car, it goes on that key fastener…saves it dropping to the bottom of the purse and I always Know where it is. This is doable. Many thanks.

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Hi fiesty! It’s these sharings that reenforce my belief that we are all so similar and interwoven. I just left MY garage door open (more than once😳) ) too. Which is a big safety issue. Thanks to both of you for your story and good advice. Getting older is definitely an adventure…….

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Wow, I am guilty of this ALL the time – I need to find a trick that really works. Keeping the door shut at all times doesn't work because it's a long way around from the security door in the back to the front of the garage and house where all the action is, and I am in and out of the yard and garden all day long. @tep Thanks for the suggestion @johnbishop Unless someone is accustomed to doing their own electrical wiring, it would be best to find an electrician for this. At our house, a security light outside our bedroom window stays on if the door is open, and I see it when preparing for bed – of course, that's at 11pm, and the open door has been an invitation to bad guys and critters for 12 or more hours…
I'm going to "ask a friend" – someone in our little park has undoubtedly dealt with this, and it will make a new topic for walk-by patio chats.
Sue

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I have a motion detector light too. It seems to like to go on when there are any critters out there. (Shines right into the bedroom). Those, I’m not so concerned about. Like you, we have bad guys and make it a habit to try to keep the garage door always closed. It’s a pain, but leaving it open when working around our house is an enticement for them. If you come upon a good idea, please share. Thanks

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@virgo1952

Hi fiesty! It’s these sharings that reenforce my belief that we are all so similar and interwoven. I just left MY garage door open (more than once😳) ) too. Which is a big safety issue. Thanks to both of you for your story and good advice. Getting older is definitely an adventure…….

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Thanks for letting me know I am not the only one! I so agree that most of share more in common than we usually ever suppose. While many may agree that aging is not for sissies, I like your thought of approaching and accepting it as an adventure…thanks for this great approach!

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Sue, that is usually the culprit for me as well. Once the garage door is open, I am in and out of the front, side and backyards throughout gardening times. Glad to welcome another to this "preoccupied"? elite group. vbg My front motion detector, like Virgo's, is often triggered by wind or critters too so isn't really a reliable signal. I've mounted neon orange "reminders" on my computer…often the last activity before bedtime; on the lamp table that fronts my back door; and on my pillow each morning to see before crawling into bed at night. And although a real pain, I am starting to train myself to close the garage door after taking anything needed for the yard and then entering the house again from the back. I've also started keeping a house key on a bright key chain inserted in the utility/garage door to remind me to check the garage and keep the that door locked as well.

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HAVE SOME OF THE SAME REMEMBRANCE PROBLEMS. A STRING TIED ON MY FINGER, SEEMS TO DO THE TRICK. Hugh

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My first thought and I'm trying to do this myself is to do a walk around the house before bed to check all the doors and windows. Usually if I see a door still unlocked it means that probably I left the garage door open too. I only.store my cars in the garage so typically I close it on the way into the house but I have been known to leave it open when it's gots hot out and let it air out.

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@burfordhugh8102

HAVE SOME OF THE SAME REMEMBRANCE PROBLEMS. A STRING TIED ON MY FINGER, SEEMS TO DO THE TRICK. Hugh

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Hi, @burfordhugh8102 A string around the finger is a good idea. Thank you. Toward retirement, I sometimes used a rubber band around my wrist to remind me of a meeting or campus appointment.

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Hello,

I have been doing that lately….it always happens when I bring in groceries from the front door….what happens is this: when my wife and I get back from grocery shopping, we back the second car (SUV) up into the driveway to unload groceries….we engage the automatic door opener so we can judge how close we come to the garage without hitting the sides that jut out…we then unlock the front door and take them in that way….(we do it like this because there is very little room with the sedan parked in the garage….) unfortunately by doing this, we have recently forgotten to check the garage and close the door again…so, what I’ve been doing is to visually check the front door and open the utility door of the garage and check that the garage door is down also, not just when we go to the store….that way, I can train myself …..I hope my story helps….

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