When you’re out of balance, you’re likely to find it difficult to handle your regular daily tasks as a family caregiver. You might also just feel sort of “blah” and find it hard to enjoy caregiving as much as you could. Getting back in balance is important for you, but also for your relationship with your elderly loved one.
Check Your Physical and Emotional Health
If you’ve been ignoring your physical health, it’s time to get back to paying attention to that. You need the right foods, adequate sleep, and a healthy body in order to get back into balance. Your emotional health is just as important. If your emotions are all over the place, you might want to consider talking to a counselor to help you sort them out.
Get Help and Support
A common reason that family caregivers end up feeling overwhelmed is because they try to do too much on their own. You don’t have to do it all yourself. Talk to your other family members and figure out where they can pitch in. If they can’t help or you don’t have family in the area, hire elder care providers to help you. Don’t forget that you can also get help by going to support group meetings and learning more about caregiving.
Schedule Breaks into Every Day
You need time away from caregiving now and again so that you can spend a day or a weekend taking care of yourself. Almost every caregiver understands that, even if they find it difficult to do. What you might not think about as much is that you need breaks periodically every day, too. Take a few minutes here and there to just breathe.
Stop Feeling Guilty
As a family caregiver, you might find yourself feeling guilty no matter what you do and what choice you make. Sometimes it might feel as if you just can’t win, regardless of your decisions. Stop allowing guilt to run your life and know that you’re doing the best that you can with the resources that you have. Give yourself permission to let the guilt go.
If you can make checking in with yourself a regular activity, you can catch small imbalances before they knock you sideways.