Could your time as a caregiver be a little easier and possibly more enjoyable? You might think that’s either impossible or a selfish idea, but making that happen can have ripple effects for everyone else in your life, too.
Get Your Self-care Plan Together
You’re doing a lot as a caregiver, but you need to be taking care of yourself, too. If you’re not focusing on self-care at all, you’re less likely to be able to keep running and doing. This feels selfish for many caregivers, but it isn’t. Change your perspective a bit. If you’re not able to keep being your senior’s caregiver, who can step in?
Work through Your Emotions
What are you feeling on a daily basis? If you’re just stuffing your emotions, even the ones you don’t like, you’re not actually dealing with them. What happens then is that you wind up dealing with them when you can least afford to do so. You don’t have to wallow in your emotions, but you should acknowledge them and let them go.
Cherish Your Accomplishments
Spend a little bit of time on a regular basis patting yourself on the back. Few other people are going to even notice when you pull off a miracle, so it’s important that you acknowledge those accomplishments to yourself. It can help if you keep a running list of all the stuff you’re proud of so that you can toot your own horn, even if you’re just doing that for yourself.
Live for More Than Just Caregiving
You’re a caregiver, but that’s only one of your roles. You’re a multifaceted human being and you have a lot going on. Remember that and remember to spend time and energy on your other roles to support them. Stay in touch with the people that you love and reach out when you need to.
Remember to Ask for Help
There are going to be times when you need some extra help. You might ask for help from home care providers, from other family members, or from your employer to deal with work issues. Wherever you need help, don’t be afraid or shy about asking for it. Few people are able to do absolutely everything on their own. If you try to force yourself to do that, you’re going to run yourself ragged for no good reason.
Your senior’s quality of life matters a lot, but so does yours. When you’re making your own life easier as a caregiver, that factors into the other areas of your life, too. You’ll be a better caregiver because you’re supporting your own needs.