Even though it may seem so, it’s not easy to remain positive when a loved one requires extensive care. It could be an elderly parent, grandparent, spouse, or even an adult child who is recovering following an accident. If you don’t maintain a positive attitude, the stress you feel as a caregiver is only going to become more exacerbated.
Below are five ways that people can help maintain a more positive attitude, not just when they take on the role of a family caregiver, but in other aspects of their life, too.
1. Learn to manage stress.
If you don’t know how to manage your own stress, it’s going to negatively affect almost every aspect of your life. First, you need to acknowledge stress. Just because you may feel this is your responsibility to look after this person, and you love them, doesn’t mean stress isn’t going to affect you as a result.
2. Eat healthy.
When we don’t eat healthy, our body isn’t getting the nourishment it needs. If it’s not getting the nourishment it needs, it’s not going to be healthy and it’s going to be much more difficult to remain positive, especially when you feel run down, fatigued, or are getting sick too frequently.
3. Get exercise.
Just as important as eating healthy, it’s also essential to exercise regularly. There are many ways to get exercise, even if you don’t have a lot of time. Doctors recommend at least 15 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every day. You can do this with a quick jog, running up and down stairs, or even doing jumping jacks or running in place.
4. Make time to relax.
Yes, this family member needs assistance, but you still need to make time for yourself. If you don’t relax, if you don’t unwind, if you don’t enjoy time with friends, reading if that’s your preference, or doing other things you enjoy, you may not see the value in many other things you try to do.
When you have time to relax, your mind and body have an opportunity to refresh and recharge, which provides a better opportunity for a more positive attitude.
5. Keep up with your interests.
When a person we love needs help and support, we often sacrifice our own things for their benefit. You still need to pursue your hobbies and other areas of interest. If you don’t, the stress you feel is simply going to get more intense and it’s going to be a greater challenge to remain positive.
If you don’t think you have time for your own interests, diet, and exercise, realize that a home care aide can be a valuable asset.
If you or an aging loved one are considering home care to reduce caregiver stress in Havertown, PA, please contact the caring staff at True Direct Home Health Care at 215-309-3119.
Doc, as he is called by everyone - staff, patients and clients - first experienced home health care and hospice care while as a colleg student at King's College as he cared for his mother every day as while she first battled COPD and then lung cancer. It was during this time that he came to understand that caring for a patient was more than just clinical expertise. "Admittedly, my strongest attribute is my communication skills and the simple fact that I love to help people. Even the smallest thing you can do for someone really can mean so much to them long term. In fact, it could change them forever. That's what providing quality personal home health care should be all about."
In his spare time, he cooks for homeless shelters and children's music and arts events. He also is highly involved in his local youth sports soccer academy as a coach and Board member.