The mental and emotional well being of a caregiver is so important. Caregivers can ‘complain’ of burn out. You don’t need a brain of Einstein to tell you that if the caregiver themselves are drained, then there may be issues with the ones they are supporting!
Here are some quick tips to ponder on in order to avoid stress and burn out. We want you to ultimately keep on keeping on. We are cheering you on!
1. Do not be reluctant to ask for help. Accept help when it is given. Ask for help with errands and chores if possible.
2. Make sure you are also accountable to someone (for your health and well being, your needs, etc).
3. Do things together with your loved one. Don’t keep them excluded in everything.
4. Join a support group such as a church, mental health support group, and so on.
5. Engage in a hobby. You can learn a new language, keep a journal of good thoughts and experiences, for example.
6. Get plenty of rest and relaxation as much as possible to avoid burnout.
7. Watch your diet to ensure you are eating well. If not, speak to someone who can help.
8. If you are not eating well, in the meantime, take some vitamins supplement e.g. Vitamin B (stress vitamins), multi vitamins.
9. Stay hydrated. Ensure you maintain your fluid uptake.
10. Exercise or go for walks – take your loved one along too. Exercise will help you to sleep better too.
11. Don’t compare yourself to others. Be patient with your progress. The important thing is reaching your destination whether by giant or baby steps.
12. Look for the silver lining in the cloud. Celebrate milestones.
13. Be informed but not too absorbed by the details of the disease. Over-thinking is like shadows. They always look bigger than reality.
14. Think about what you are thinking about. Have 3 buckets for your thoughts – one to discard, the other to keep, and one to act on.
15. Guard your heart with diligence. Remember because things ended in a negative way for others does not mean that will be your story. Maintain your composure.
16. Speak what you want to see rather than what you currently see. This is the power of confession.
17. Meditate on some scriptures. There is power in meditation.
18. Plan your day as much as possible. You want to reduce stress as much as possible.
19. Read encouraging testimonies and materials (such as the ones on this site) that will make you less prone to anxiety.
20. Stay away from negative minded people especially the ones who are ‘realistic’. Most times they see the glass as half empty, if not empty!
21. Pray. Tell God how you feel.
22. Listen to uplifting music e.g. spiritual songs, praise and worship songs. There is a lot of power in music.
23. Don’t be hard on yourself. Reward yourself. Treat yourself now and again.
24. Remember you CAN defy the odds. It only takes one person each time to change the statistics.
25. Share your victory with us. Together we can help others to defy the odds!
If you are a caregiver, the next move is up to you. Take action with the points above. And share the love by sharing this post with other caregivers or anyone who will find this useful. Thank you.