When you’re taking care of a family member, it can be really difficult to stay afloat. When you’re focusing all of your attention on one person, it’s easy to get burned out. Plus, if you don’t help out and stand as the family caregiver, you might feel a sense of guilt. It’s important to understand that if you don’t put yourself and your needs first, you can’t be there to serve anyone else. Remember that just as much as you want the person to feel cared for, you have to do the same with yourself. As long as you remember that and commit to the process, you’ll be able to get through this period without burning yourself out.

Exercise

Not only does exercising allow you to maintain a healthy weight, but it also serves as a great form of stress relief. So many people feel energized once they’re able to take a jog and release those endorphins. Even if it’s just to clear your mind, get outside and go for a brisk walk or jog.

Maintain a Healthy Diet with Water and Supplements

Your diet can make a major impact on how you think, feel, sleep and live. If there’s one thing you’ve got to be strict about, it’s your diet. Drink lots of water on a consistent basis. Take your vitamins and supplements. If you’re in need of energy, make sure that you have a B12 supplement you can take. Always make sure you have fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains in your diet. It’ll help you sustain a healthy body.

Solicit Assistance

Respite care is an option you and your family should consider. Find out if any respite care is covered under the family member’s health insurance policy. Whether the care covers a few hours each week or full-time help, it really is something to consider. No man is an island, and it is challenging to bear the responsibilities of taking care of another adult while maintaining your own life.

Schedule Breaks

Everyone has a least thirty minutes they can find in the day. Even the person with the busiest schedule can carve out time to unwind. Knowing this, it’s important to develop some ritual that allows you to mentally escape and unwind for a little bit. You might decide to go into another room and watch a thirty-minute sitcom while you drink some wine.

If you don’t help out and stand as the family caregiver, you might feel a strong sense of guilt. A person with a good heart naturally wants to help and serve those around them. However, it’s important to understand that if you don’t put yourself and your needs first, you can’t be there to serve anyone else. Remember that just as much as you want the person to feel cared for, you have to do the same with yourself. As long as you remember that and commit to the process, you’ll be able to get through this period without burning yourself out.

By Lizzie Weakley

Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and walks in the park with her three-year-old husky, Snowball.

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