Articles > Caregiving > Coping > Caregiver911


Published by Chapster on 2005/3/18 (2751 reads)
Current Top Ten Brakes for Caregivers

So, here's the deal... You just walked in the door of your home. You're exhausted, your heart is breaking, and there are twelve messages on your answering machine. Only an hour ago your were visiting your father at the nursing home. He yelled at you, cussed you out, actually. Of course, he didn't know you. But, instead of making you feel better that only makes you feel worse. So, we've provided this page in hopes of shedding some light in your darkness. It'll be growing! So please, watch, enjoy, and keep us posted on your ideas for this page...

1. Eat a comfort food (Mike's comfort foods are Macaroni and Cheese and Meatloaf; Barb's are: gourmet, dark, semisweet chocolate and Ben & Jerry's vanilla ice-cream) and drink a comfort drink (for instance, chamomile tea before sleeping). While small amounts of alcohol may be appropriate in some circumstances, it also often dulls the soul work that is part of difficult life situations.

2. Fill the tub with appropriately warmed water, necessary oils, herbs and spices, and luxuriate with a good book. Better yet, request a loved one to pour the bath for you (make sure you do nothing more than bathe!

3. Pray (and yes, you can be angry with God).

4. Call someone who will listen thoroughly, non-judgmentally, and without trying to fix the problem. If necessary, tell them this is exactly what you need.

5. A massage, especially from a loving spouse.

6. Hugs, lots of hugs.

7. A long walk in a park. Try and combine this with some of the other suggestions.

8. Take a "mental health day" off from work!

9. Read a book, something you've wanted to read but put off. Perhaps, poetry, or a novel - for distraction. (Check out the Humor and Hope section below for a website that offers books to read on-line for free!)

10. Watch some mindful television. Or, do the opposite. When was the last time you watched a Marx Brother's or "Pink Panther" movie? I (Barb) watch I Love Lucy for comfort. I also watch Frank Capra movies for soul-nourishment. This kind of thing is "soul food"!

11. Okay, I know we said "Top Ten" but ideas 1 - 10 won't matter at all unless you promise yourself to do them and then follow through. YOU NEED THIS TIME! Please take it.

P.S. As with all pages on our site, the information on this page is for informational purposes only. We want to emphasize the sometimes dangerous effects of long term chronic stress on the body and the soul. If you are in a situation where you find yourself encountering high levels of chronic stress, PLEASE speak to a health care, religious, or counseling professional. You should practice self-care routinely, and with caring deliberation.

Tags: caregiver   stress   burnout  

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