Caregiver’s Guide: Prioritizing Self-Care

Dec 13, 2023 | Moore Care

self care for caregivers

Holidays bring joy, but for caregivers of elderly family members, it can also bring stress and more responsibilities. When caring for elderly loved ones, it is crucial to prioritize self-care. This is because taking care of oneself ensures that there is enough energy and strength to provide the best care possible. 

Here are 8 essential tips to help you navigate this season while taking care of yourself:

1. Schedule “Me Time”

Set aside dedicated time for yourself every day, even if it’s just 15 minutes. Use this time to relax, meditate, read the bible, or engage in an activity you enjoy. Prioritizing yourself helps recharge your batteries and reduces burnout.

2. Accept Help

Don’t be afraid to ask for and accept help. Family and friends often want to support you, but they might not know how. Letting others help with caregiving, errands, meals, or emotional support can make things easier for you.

3. Practice Stress-Relieving Activities

Incorporate stress-relieving activities into your routine, such as yoga, deep breathing exercises, or even a short walk. These activities can help reduce stress levels and improve overall well-being.

4. Prioritize Healthy Eating and Exercise

Maintaining a balanced diet and getting regular exercise are crucial for your physical and mental health. We know caregiving for an aging parent is tiring, so avoid too much caffeine and try to sleep early.

Make time for physical activities. Walking and stretching can lower stress and boost well-being. Prioritize daily activities like these.

5. Set Realistic Expectations

Recognize that you can’t do everything. Read that sentence again. Set realistic expectations for yourself and accept that it’s okay to prioritize tasks over others. Don’t hesitate to delegate when necessary.

6. Find Moments of Joy

Amidst the responsibilities, find moments of joy and gratitude. Cherish the small moments by spending time with loved ones and create memories that will bring a smile to your face. Especially during the holiday season, moments of joy surround us. 

Philippians 4:4 says, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.” You may be thinking, “Easier said than done.” Choosing to find moments of joy in activities of daily living will help tend to your own self care.

7. Seek Professional Help if Needed

If you find yourself overwhelmed or struggling to cope, seeking professional help is not a sign of weakness. Therapists or counselors specializing in caregiver support can provide invaluable guidance. The Moore Care team understands the intensive needs that taking care of elderly individuals requires. You can turn to us for 24-hour live-in care and disability care services for your loved one in Baton Rouge, LA.

8. Plan Ahead and Simplify

Plan ahead for the holiday season by simplifying activities and tasks. Focus on what truly matters and consider scaling back on non-essential commitments.

Remember, taking care of yourself isn’t selfish; it’s necessary so you can better take care of your aging loved one. The holidays can be challenging, but by applying these self-care tips, they can also be a time of connection, love, and meaningful moments for both you and your loved one.

Taking on the responsibility of being a full time caregiver can be overwhelming. Maybe you didn’t choose to become a full time caregiver to your parent or you feel like there are no other options. Ask yourself, “Am I offering the level of care that’s best for my parent? What about what’s best for me?

If you’re considering a lifestyle change with the new year by bringing on professional help, Moore Care is here to help.

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