Caring for someone is a role that is often sprung upon us when that person goes through a health crisis, such as an injury or illness. Everything gets pushed to one side while we focus entirely on the wellbeing of the person we care for. But once the initial crisis has happened, it’s important for caregivers to organise and remember to care for themselves, because we can’t really look after someone else’s wellbeing when our own fails.
Being a caregiver is a huge responsibility, and takes an emotional as well as physical toll, so it can be hard to save time or energy for self care. Here are just three things that a caregiver needs to do for themselves every day:
- Say no. It’s important to know your limits and communicate them to others. If too much is being asked of you, get comfortable saying ‘no’. Taking on too much will lead to burnout.
- Ask for help. Caregivers are often isolated as they feel that they shouldn’t be allowed to ask for help, but the reality is that many want to help and just need you to ask – and accept it when offered. Let others assist you, and remember to take respite care for a break when you need one.
- Make time for yourself. Every day! Set aside some time that is just for you, doing something that helps you relax and regenerate. For some it may be hitting the gym, while others prefer to cook or have a quiet cup of tea. Whatever your Me Time is, make sure it happens by putting it in your schedule.
For help in finding the downtime you need as a caregiver, contact Serenity Home Care, the leading caregiver in Victoria and the surrounding areas.