Finding Balance in Life as a Caregiver
They say you can't pour from an empty cup, and that's definitely true in my life as a caregiver. It's so important to find the balance and give yourself grace when feeling a little overwhelmed by life! That's why today, I want to tell you the 3 ways I find balance in my life as a caregiver.
I let go of guilt
Life is too short not to enjoy it fully! A lot of caregivers put their own needs second because they don't want to let anyone down or cause problems (yes that is me with my hand up in the back).
However, putting your needs first is healthy and important for keeping a balance within your own life. It may sound selfish at first when you are used to putting your needs second, but it is necessary for balance.
If you don't hold on to anything else, remember this: it is okay to let yourself off the hook if you need to - balance is key!
I set boundaries
This might be hard for someone who wants to do it all (clearing my throat here cause again that is me) but there is strength in balance.
Because you are a caregiver, sometimes it can be easy for you to overdo things. Whether it is household chores or obligations with friends and family, learn when to say "no" and set boundaries. This will help balance your life out so that there is enough time left over for the things that are important to you and that you enjoy.
This is up to you. When I do balance check-ins with myself, I take some time on a regular basis to take stock of how balance might be eluding me.
These check-ins can vary depending upon what works best for me; it may be through subconscious cues like feeling more tired than usual or physically taking note of symptoms like digestive issues, headaches, and the like.
All in all, what's most helpful for me is to listen to my body and examine how I feel.
Why balance is needed
At the end of the day, it's easy to lose yourself in the world of caregiving. Believe it or not, taking time for yourself actually helps your loved one!
Making sure that there is a balance between "you" and everyone else in your life will help with managing stress, burnout, and tension that comes with caregiver roles. It's important to balance your life with time, care, and energy.
While it might be easy to feel guilty for taking time away from the person you are caring for or others that rely on you, just remember that everyone needs their own personal time. Some people find balance through exercise, meditation, writing, being around friends - anything that makes them happy!
You can also consider different ways of scheduling care so there is an adequate time each day for both yourself and your loved one. Make sure these scheduled times are consistent so nothing is missed or forgotten. If additional help is needed because your balance is off-kilter, maybe look at hiring an extra caregiver.
Find balance in life as a caregiver
Keeping yourself aware of these 3 things can help you find the balance in your life as a caregiver! I hope this article was helpful and offered some tips on how to find the balance.
Remember: balance in life is important! You may struggle some days, but keep trying! By practicing and understanding the importance of balance, you will be on your way to filling your cup in no time.
Comment below which one will you try first, or share your story with the community.
Does humor help you cope?