The Family Caregiver and Time Management
Caregivers in Minneapolis MN
Time management is big business. On any Saturday, you can find lecture rooms filled with people wanting to know the same thing: how can I make most of my time and why is 24 hours in a day not enough? As a family caregiver, you have undoubtedly wondered the same thing. There are a few tricks to managing time in the caregiving world.
This is top priority. This schedule needs to contain the following for each day: tasks that need to be completed, appointments that need to be met, errands that need to be run, shopping that needs to be completed, social engagements that need to be filled. It’s easy in the busy world of a caregiver to leave out social interaction. Your parent can certainly live without it, but they won’t thrive without it. Now, for every item on you agenda—schedule a person to fulfill it. If you notice your name is practically the only one on the list, something needs to change. You cannot be everything to every person. If there are not enough family and friends to go around, consider obtaining the services of a home care provider. Not only can they fill in the missing gaps in the schedule, they can offer companionship to your parent.
It may be surprising to see this at the top of a time management discussion. Most times, that’s the last item to appear. But in this case scenario, it really needs to be near the top, right up there with number one. Again, back to the schedule. If you notice that your name is listed every day, something, once again, needs to change. A caregiver is caring and giving for large chunks of the day—a blessing in many ways, but also energy depleting. You need to fill the vessel, recharge, regroup, revitalize. A home care provider can give you the day or days off that you need. They are professionals who have cared for countless seniors.
This category can be surprising. One would think it’s easy—first priority: cleanliness, second priority: medications, third priority: safety. But then we look at the list and realize they are all priorities. How do you decide where to start? Routine is key, but routine with awareness is the ultimate goal. You can start the day with personal hygiene and find half-way through the bath your mind has been in a million other places than where you are…with your parent. And what has it accomplished? A wandering mind usually accomplishes one of two things: stress or worry. Stop. Be still. Be present.
“Don’t sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff.”–Richard Carlson
Here’s a priority: laughter. Be sure to pencil that into the schedule as well. It’s the playful, heartfelt moments with your parent that you’ll remember, not the meal preparation or medicinal reminders.
If you or an aging loved one are considering caregivers in Minnesota, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.