August 28, 2019
When you take care of a lot of different aspects of your senior’s life as well as your own, you’re going to occasionally feel overwhelmed. But if that’s happening more often, you need to get a handle on the situation.
Grab a Calendar or a Planner and Start Using It
Very often overwhelm is a sign that you’re missing some appointments, plans, or tasks. Using a planner or calendar regularly can take care of at least part of that problem. You might feel more comfortable with a paper planner or a digital one, but the format really doesn’t matter. What matters is that you use this tool every day to capture the information that keeps you on top of things. If you’re trying to hold everything in your memory, that’s going to let you down over and over again.
Figure out How a Routine Could Streamline Some Things
If you find that you’re spending a large part of your day on a regular basis dealing with issues that crop up, you might benefit from having some routines in place. Routines give you a way to move more effortlessly from one part of your day to another. For instance, you might find that having a wakeup routine allows you to get your senior dressed and through breakfast much more quickly. Then you can transition into the next part of the day. Without routines, everything feels more random.
Create Some Margin in Your Life
Something that caregivers often forget is that having buffer time or margin in between activities creates a natural breathing room. When your day is so packed that you can’t breathe, that is going to contribute greatly to overwhelm. Add in five minutes between activities and make sure that you take that time just to focus on what you need next. It can make a world of difference.
Reevaluate Your Self-care Plan
Something you’re likely to overlook as a caregiver is your own self-care. There’s a lot to focus on when it comes to caring for someone else and you’re likely to fall into the cracks. But if you’re not paying attention to your own needs, that’s going to put you in a position to easily become overwhelmed. Avoid that by looking a little more closely at what you need and how you can put it in place for yourself.
As you start to notice that you’re feeling overwhelmed, look at what’s contributing most at that moment. When you can stop and evaluate what’s working and what isn’t, you can start to put solutions in place more quickly. Gradually you might even find that you’re overwhelmed far less often than you used to be.