In last month’s newsletter we discussed the signs, symptoms, and consequences of caregiver burnout. To help manage your stress, we offer tips and strategies that may improve your qualify of life:
- Accept offers of help.Prepare a list of ways that others can help you. For instance, a friend may pick up groceries for you or take a loved one for a walk a couple times a week.
- Focus on your own abilities. Keep in mind that no one is a “perfect” caregiver. Provide care to the best of your ability and be kind to yourself.
- Set realistic expectations. Not everything needs to be done at once! Break large tasks into smaller steps, make lists to help prioritize tasks. Establish a daily routine.
- Community resources. Search out educational programs specific to the disease or care needs of your loved one. Consider services such as transportation, meal delivery, or housekeeping.
- Join a support group. Not only can participants provide encouragement and validation, but they may also offer strategies and stress management tips that have been effective for them.
- Engage with others. Stay connected with family and friends. Isolation can lead to loneliness and depression.
- Set attainable health goals. Find time to be physically active on most days of the week. Eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of water, also establish a good sleep routine.
Visit www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/caregiver-stress/art-20044784 for more insight and guidance on caregiver burnout.