Mitch of I’m Just Sharing is the inspiration for this blog post. Sometimes he stops by my blog and leaves a comment. He commented on Letting Go of What Longer ServesMe Pays Off which made me think about how people who are caretakers need to incorporate self-care rituals.
How can a caretaker take time for self-care when they have to be there for a parent or child who needs them the most? Mitch has shared that he is the Caretaker of his Mother and so I hope he does not mind me mentioning it.
But Mitch has been there for is Mother, while most people who have siblings would have put their Mom in a nursing home, Mitch chose to take on the responsibility of caring for his Mom.
She is in good hands with him, and I know he probably gets tired, but he continues because he knows his Mother needs him. I commend you Mitch for all that you do for your Mother.
Today, I give you four simple ways to incorporate self-care in your life when you are a Caretaker.
I am Also a Caretaker
But before I do that I want you to know that, I am the caretaker of my daughter, with the help of my husband, who has Trisomy 21. Although she can do a lot on her own, there are a few things for which she needs assistance.
A typical child her age would not need their parents as much, but she does, and I am here for her. There are times when I do not take time for self-care which effects my attitude and outlook on life.
My key to having a great attitude and outlook on life is prayer and trusting God, and incorporating self-care rituals.
4 Ways to Incorporate Self-Care When You are a Caretaker
Although I am not an expert in the self-care arena, I can only tell you what I do and hopefully, you will find these tips helpful.
#1 Make a concerted effort for some quiet time.
As a caretaker, it is sometimes impossible to have time alone, but it is a must that you do this. Quiet time is excellent for relaxing and reflecting. I squeeze quiet time in when the time presents itself, and you can do the same. Be creative.
#2 Do something special for yourself.
It may be a challenge getting away, but if you can get someone to sit with your loved one, do it. You may want a few hours of pampering from someone other than yourself. Go for it, get that facial, body massage, manicure, pedicure, or haircut that you been postponing. Or you may want to treat yourself to your favorite restaurant. Do something that gives you joy.
#3 Take a leisurely walk.
Walking has many benefits, but going for a walk helps with clearing your mind and managing stress. When I can go for leisurely walks in my neighborhood, it connects me with nature. I love it because I can see the environment in its splendor. The sounds of nature are enough to calm my spirit.
#4 Sleep more, not less.
As caretakers we think that we can run on little to no sleep, not getting an adequate amount of rest creeps on you in subtle ways. Sometimes you will be irritated, fatigued without realizing that you only got 4-5 hours of sleep. Sleep is not just beneficial for the body, but it is good for the mind too. Do what you can to ensure you are getting enough sleep.
Self-care is one of the most important acts of love to do for yourself. It is not a selfish act.
Take care of yourself, so you are the best Caretaker for your loved one.
Do not skimp on self-care. If you are not doing self-care rituals, start by doing one simple act at a time.
As long as you are doing something for yourself, it makes for a healthier, happier you.
You give your best to your loved one, but invest time in caring for yourself and in doing so, life is better for everyone.
Until next time,
Take care of you, and OWN IT
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