New year. New you. A sampling of New Year’s resolutions to help family caregivers stay happy, healthy and energized in 2019.
2019 is just days away and the beginning of a new year is a perfect time to evaluate our lives, address challenges and move forward with positivity. For caregivers, this is an especially important time, so we’ve put together a collection of family caregiver New Year’s resolutions just for you:
In 2019, grow your support circle so that you’re not doing everything by yourself. Create a support team of family, friends and/or local resources, like FirstLight Home Care, to help you be the best caregiver you can be.
Ask family or friends to help with the loved one you’re caring for to support you with specific tasks: providing companionship or hands-on care, managing finances, doing research, running errands or helping with household chores.
In 2019, block out break-times for yourself – every day. Even if you’re taking mini-breaks throughout the day, do something simple and positive to help reduce the stress of caregiving.
- Conduct a two-minute meditation, breathing or calming exercise.
- Take a minute or two to stretch and enjoy a quiet moment.
- Get up and walk outside.
- Connect with family and friends with a phone call or video chat.
In 2019, connect with the loved one in your care by doing an activity you both enjoy. Find fun activities you can do together – at home, or in the community – to make caregiving feel like less of a chore and more of a time to grow your relationship. Adding activities, such as doing a puzzle, going to the movies, playing a board game, or taking a stroll around the neighborhood will create a special time that you both can enjoy.
In 2019, schedule time off – weekly. Caregiver burnout is real. One way to prevent burnout is to set aside time for yourself. Find a family member, friend, volunteer or a professional caregiver to help manage the care of your loved one – even if just for a couple hours one morning a week – so that you can take time for yourself.
- Hire an in-home caregiver for a few hours each week to help with companion care and other personal care responsibilities
- Enroll your older adult in an adult day program
- Connect with professional organizations with respite care programs
In 2019, don’t just manage the symptoms, help improve them. Work with your loved one to lower blood pressure, get control of glucose levels, eat right, stop smoking and get more exercise. Seniors who are physically healthy tend to be happier, more energetic and easier to be around. Family caregivers should follow this same advice!
What resolutions have you set for 2019 that could benefit our community of family caregivers? Comment below or join our conversation over on Facebook.
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