Caregiving Monday: 10 Ways to Care for the Caregiver

Caregiving can be very stressful on the caregiver.

Caregivers need time to relax, unwind and have some “me” time.   Balancing self-care is important.

Pamper yourself
Pamper yourself

What are some ways to do this?

  1. Exercise—exercise is good for the body and also helps the mind. Exercise also helps to relieve stress.   Take a walk, go to an exercise class, put in an exercise video, ride a bicycle, take a dance class, etc.  Find something you enjoy doing and can do on a regular basis.
  2. Pamper yourself—take time to pamper yourself whether it is a facial, massage, or mani/pedi.
  3. Create personal space—if your loved one lives with you, find an area in your home that is just for you. An area where you can just rest and relax without the added worries and stress of caring for a household and family.
  4. Make a list—write a list of things you would enjoy doing if you had the time. At least once a month try to pick one item to mark off your list.

    Enjoy some music and go dancing
    Enjoy some music and go dancing
  5. Schedule the time—schedule the time, make sure you have the time off and take the time for yourself. Even if it is an hour or few hours we all need time for ourselves.
  6. Mini Vacations—arrange for a mini vacation. Take a weekend and get away with your husband or by yourself.  Arrange to have someone cover the shift and go somewhere for a break.  You can stay in town, go to a nearby retreat, or go a few hours away.  If possible try to get away on a quarterly or bi-annually place to rejuvenate yourself.
  7. Enjoy a hobby—find a hobby you enjoy and take time for the hobby. This can be anything from reading to gardening to knitting/crocheting to DIY projects to anything else you enjoy.
  8. Music is always good to relax and unwind with. Put on some soothing music or go out dancing.
  9. Develop a routine—find a routine that is best for your needs and circumstances. Find ways to implement time saving techniques into your day.
  10. Journal—journaling your feelings, thoughts and emotions is a great way to express your feelings and be honest with yourself. You can also keep a thanksgiving or gratitude journal to remind yourself of what you are thankful for.  On the more stressful days look back over the journal for a reminder.

How do you find me time amidst your caregiving obligations?

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