Resilience in Caregiving
What is Resilience?
Resilience is the ability to quickly adapt and recover from adversity.
Many of us find ourselves caring for children and elderly parents while still working full time. Thus, caregiving may present some challenges, but caregiving can also be an opportunity for growth; an opportunity to give back our time to a loved one or to serve as a positive role model for our children. Being resilient can help us to become stronger and gain confidence while helping to maintain the wellbeing of our families.
How to Manage Difficult Experiences
- Give yourself credit – Acknowledge that your achievement was the result of hard work.
- Access external social supports and resources – Join a support group; ask family and friends for help; access professional resources, e.g., respite care, compassion care program, etc. Remember to ask for assistance before you reach a crisis point
- Have a positive outlook – Replace negative thoughts with positive ones; believe that good things will happen; focus on only those things you have control over.
- Eat well and exercise – Keep fit and active for overall health and wellbeing.
- Remain cognitively and emotional flexible – Accept and anticipate change; don’t let fear win over thoughts and behaviours; let go of guilt; be flexible; look for meaning in hardship; learn from the experience.
- Improve your communication – Listen actively to your loved one being cared for, and communicate clearly, concisely, and respectfully with professional care providers so that you may advocate effectively on behalf of your loved one.
- Develop meaning and purpose – Nurture yourself – do something you love which gives you energy and hope – engage in spirituality, take up yoga, meditate, think of/share with others.
Start your Path to Resilient Living
Dr. Amit Sood explains that our brain operates in two functional modes:
- Focused mode, of undistracted presence, and
- Default mode, of mind wandering.
Learn how to find greater peace and happiness by engaging your brain’s focused mode so that you can better manage stress, reduce anxiety, increase resilience and achieve better quality of life. Learn more from http://stressfree.org/
The holidays can be especially difficult…small things can make a big difference.
Do you know a caregiver that could benefit from help during the holiday season? Why not extend your support in the following ways?
- Send notes of encouragement
- Offer to sit for an afternoon, so a caregiver can get out for a few hours
- Bake cookies or muffins
- Do yardwork or household chores
- Arrange for shoveling services
- Do they have a pet? Take the pet for a walk
- Set up a care circle – https://sharethecare.org/
PDF – Resilience in Caregiving