How to Balance Life as a Caregiver
Balancing Life as a Caregiver
Taking care of an elderly parent can be rewarding because you know you’re giving back to someone who helped raise you, but it also comes with its share of challenges. You’re trying to balance your own life, career, and family with meeting the needs of your parent. It’s a difficult job.
November is National Family Caregivers Month and wonderful time to remind yourself that you don’t have to go through this journey alone. Many others face similar situations, and there are plenty of resources to help you along the way. Here are a few things to keep in mind when trying to find balance in your own life as a caregiver:
- Take time for yourself
You are not going to be any help to your aging parent if you are burnt out and running on empty. Don’t forget to schedule time to do things for yourself and that you enjoy. That may mean getting your hair or nails done, get a massage, meet friends to watch the big game, or simply enjoy some quiet time alone with a good book or movie. Give yourself a chance to recharge so you can be the best caregiver possible.
- Ask for help
Don’t feel like you have to do everything on your own. Calling family or even friends for help and support helps you divide responsibilities and lessen your own.
Ask a friend if they could stay with your parent while you run some errands or take a break. See if a neighbor would help. People often want to do something but don’t always know how or what you need, so speak up.
- Find local resources
Consider local resources as well such as community centers that provide activities or transportation. This can allow your loved one to stay busy in a safe environment with their peers. Organizations like Always Best Care Senior Services provide non-medical in-home care to assist with everything from light housekeeping, meal preparation, and managing mail to companionship, medication reminders, and morning/evening routines. Your senior can get as much or as little support as they need to maintain their independence and quality of life.
- Stay organized
Another way to help reduce stress and make things run more smoothly is to stay organized. Keep all of your loved one’s important documents in one location. You can work with a financial planner to manage expenses and a lawyer to draw up legal forms related to care. Maintain all paperwork in one central location so it is available to all family members when they need it.
- Join a support group
Connect with other caregivers by joining a local support group. You will automatically have something in common and you may find that others are great resources for information as well as support and motivation. It can be helpful to spend time with others who know exactly what you are going through because they are going through it too.
Do what is best for you and your family so that everyone can make the most of each day and the opportunities available. If your loved one could benefit from in-home care, contact Always Best Care today at (267) 217-7059 to learn more about available services and schedule a free consultation.