Caregiving is a tiring, difficult and demanding role that often leaves little time for caring for yourself. Here are 6 quick ways to show yourself a little bit of daily love.
The Life of a Caregiver
There’s no time for you, demands are great, time is short, frustration faces you every day, anger occasionally, feelings of helplessness and hopelessness are common, and you’re just tired out, right? You haven’t worn make-up in months (or shaved in months), you feel defeated, lost, forgotten who you are, what you like to do, you can’t remember the last time you laughed.
More of the same, getting progressively more difficult. You love them with all your heart but it’s just so hard.
A recent comment by a dementia caregiver went something like this:
“I just wanted some time alone. I couldn’t escape the people everywhere in my house. There was nowhere to go and all I wanted was to be alone with my own thoughts, just for an hour. I went into the yard. She followed me…………….”
If you don’t take time out to love yourself, trust me, you WILL burn out. You will be of no use to anyone, least of all the person who is relying on you the most.
Whatever it takes you need to find your own space, stop and be free to do something you love to do.
Here’s 6 easy tips to a happier you:
- Look in the mirror each morning and recite this mantra: I am a beautiful, unique spirit. There is no one else quite like me.
- Pat yourself on the back every time you do something good (and I’m sure that is more often than you give yourself credit for)
- Steal time whenever you can to do something you love even just picking a flower or reading one page of a book.
- Put on some lipstick (for the ladies of course), it will make you feel a little bit brighter. Men, you could put on your favourite aftershave to make you feel brighter.
- Sing, even if you sound like a strangled alley cat. Music is good for the soul.
- Hug yourself, we should all have five hugs a day. If no-one else is around to give you a hug then hug yourself.
Remember to first love yourself!!
Being a dementia communication specialist working with the elderly, Vicki has learnt that understanding and connecting with elders can be just as rewarding for the giver as the receiver. By working others through the Ageless Grace and AGE-u-cate support programs she believes we can build more communities of compassion & kindness.