Being a caregiver is not easy. It demands a lot of patience, time, and compassion. It is difficult to carve out time for yourself when you feel responsible for another person’s well being. However, as important as your role is, it will be nearly impossible to fulfill it well if you are not at your best! Here are two general tips to keep in mind as you strive to be the best version of yourself as a caregiver for your loved one.
You are not alone. There are many who, like you, are doing their best to provide the best care for their loved one with dementia. Find solidarity with fellow caregivers and ask family or other friends to help with your older adult. Delegation is everything!
Take time for yourself every day.
Yes, that says “every day.” You do have the time! It may feel like there are not enough hours in the day to do everything, but your future self will thank you so much for taking short breaks throughout the day. You will be less on edge, more patient, and more capable of showing compassion if your stress has been reduced through personal activities. These can include things as simple as 2 minute meditations, 4 minute workouts, or short phone calls! Connecting with your support system and doing things that you love reminds you of who you are outside of your caregiving role: a unique individual with their own passions and hobbies.