FINDING BALANCE AS A CAREGIVER


Ask For Help

Taking on all of the responsibilities of caregiving without regular breaks or assistance is a surefire recipe for burnout. Don’t try to do it all alone. Look into respite care or enlist friends and family who live near you to lend a hand where you need the extra help. This could include running errands, preparing meals, or look after the care receiver so you can take a well-deserved break. [1]


Don’t Ignore the Signs of Caregiver Stress

Caregiver stress builds up gradually over time and can lead to anxiety, depression, irritability and difficulty sleeping. You may have less energy, get sick more often and develop resentful feelings. If you develop these symptoms, it’s important to take some time and get away, even if it’s just for an afternoon out with friends. [2]


Get Organized

Your to-do list is likely growing as you're reading this, so now is the time to start taking notes. Create a calendar of different commitments like work, time at home, doctors' appointments and more that can be shared with your family or even with work so that everyone is on the same page. If possible, ask other loved ones or coworkers to help out if needed.


Your calendar and to-do list will help everyone else stay on the same page but will also serve as a universal truth for you if you ever feel scatterbrained or like you're forgetting something (assuming you use your calendar). [3]


Take Time to Reflect Along the Journey

The days can be long but the time could be short. It’s important to reflect and remember throughout the caregiving journey. Each day you may learn something new about your role or loved one. You’ll likely develop new strengths. Hear the compliments you may receive, they may be exactly what you need to lift you up and help you get through your day. [4]