Today I Learned...

Key Takeaways:
  • Managing stress as a caregiver can look different for everyone. The main thing is to keep your wellbeing a priority
  • Keeping your health and wellbeing a priority will keep you feeling healthy and happy
  • Take some time each day to find joy. Whether that be reminiscing on something funny that happened or thinking of all that you are grateful for
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s a caregiver, you may feel overwhelmed, stressed out, and frustrated.

In order to maintain your health and happiness as well as that of the person you are caring for, it's important to stay positive. You don't have to be perfect at this. No one can make it through life without experiencing negativity sometimes!

Here are 10 tips to help keep your attitude up when things get tough:

1. Learn healthy ways to manage your stress

Stress is a normal part of life and it can be good or bad. Stress is a reaction to a situation that involves the body, mind, and emotions.

For more ideas to help manage your stress, check out our articles:

2. Think of challenges as opportunities to shine

Caregiving can be a challenge, and the most difficult part about it is the emotional toll it takes on you. Think of challenges as opportunities to shine.

Instead of seeing hardships as setbacks, see them as chances for you to show how capable and caring you are. You'll feel better about yourself if you focus on what you can do rather than dwelling on what has happened or what hasn't happened yet.

3. Eat right and get plenty of rest

In addition to eating right, you should also make sure you're getting enough rest.

It doesn't matter how much positive energy you have if it's being sapped by fatigue. In fact, lack of sleep can even cause depression in some people! So make sure that when the day is over and your loved one has gone down for the night, you take time for yourself.

Take a bath or read a book before bedtime. Do whatever helps relieve stress and relaxes your mind so that tomorrow morning comes around quicker so that you don't have to spend as much time worrying about things when all should be calm at home anyways because everyone's asleep!

Learn more about improving your sleep:

4. Exercise for 30 minutes or more on most days of the week

Exercise is good for you. It helps keep your weight in check, increases your energy, and decreases stress. It also gives you time to think about something other than the person you are caring for. Exercise can be challenging if you don't make it a part of your daily routine or if you have trouble finding time to fit it into your schedule.

But with a little creativity and determination, exercising can actually become easier:

  • If possible, find a local community center that offers exercise classes for seniors.
  • Find ways to make exercise fun by listening to music while walking outdoors
  • Taking a dog out on long walks
  • Dancing around the living room
  • Try a fitness class on GetSetUp!

5. Focus on the joys in life

Look for the joys in life. Even though caring for a loved one is difficult work, remember that there are still many things to be thankful for.

Focus on the positive!

6. Remember to laugh

Laughter is a wonderful release of positive energy, and it’s important for you to find humor in any situation. Whether it’s seeing the funny side of something or just laughing at yourself, laughter can help you keep your spirits up during hard times.

Find new ways to add laughter into your life:

7. Do something nice for someone

There are many ways of being kind to others. You can volunteer your time, donate money, or offer to help someone in need. When you do something nice for another person, it will make you feel good about yourself and spread positivity throughout the world. You may even discover that the world is full of kind people who want to do the same things you do!

8. Make time each day to relax

It’s important to take time each day to relax, but it can be difficult when you have a long list of tasks and responsibilities. You might think that if you don’t get everything done today, there will never be enough time to do it tomorrow or next week.

The truth is that taking breaks throughout the day can help reduce stress, improve your mood and make you more productive overall. The key is finding activities that recharge your batteries without adding more work to your plate.

For example, if someone else can watch your loved one while they nap or take a walk outside with them instead of watching TV during their waking hours (or even better—take them out on an adventure!). Try doing something fun together as well as something relaxing by yourself like reading a book or watching Netflix at night before bedtime so that everyone sleeps better at night!

Looking for a way to take a break? Respite care can be your answer. Learn more:

9. Surround yourself with upbeat people

One of the most important things that you can do to maintain a positive attitude as a caregiver is to surround yourself with upbeat people. It’s hard to be in a good mood when you’re surrounded by negativity, so it’s important to find friends and family members who are happy and optimistic for no other reason than their natural disposition.

10. Take pride in your work and your achievements

Take pride in your accomplishments as well. You may not be able to do everything on your own, but that doesn't mean you can't accomplish anything at all! Taking pride in these small victories shows the world how dedicated and motivated you are.

As a caregiver, it is important to take care of yourself first.

This means that you need to make sure that you are doing things for yourself and making time for the things that bring joy into your life. It's so easy to get caught up in caring for someone else and forget about ourselves, but this comes at a price.

If we don't take care of ourselves emotionally and physically, it will be harder for us to continue being there for others if we're feeling burnt out or stressed out all the time. We'll also have less energy left over after our shifts as caregivers are over because caring for others always drains us more than we realize at first glance!

The best way I've found myself taking better care of myself while being an active caregiver was by setting aside specific times throughout my day where I would do something purely "for me". Whether it's just 10 minutes reading a book before bed or 45 minutes going through Netflix shows (which sounds more fun than work does sometimes) - having these scheduled periods where I am completely focused on myself has helped keep my mental state from getting too low due to stressors related directly back home (or even just those caused by taking care of others).

You can’t keep going at full speed if you don’t take care of yourself.

Taking some time for yourself each day will help you to stay healthy and happy and provide the best care for your loved one. You are a caregiver because you want to help someone, but remember that caring for yourself is just as important!

Learn more ways you can practice self-care as a caregiver:

Additional Caregiver Resources:

Posted 
Nov 19, 2022
 in 
Care
 category