Caregiving is tough work.
Emotionally and physically.
It’s no surprise that caring for another human being takes ample amounts of both time and energy. However, because of this, caregivers often find themselves having dips of exhaustion and/or anxiety.
And when those moments come, caregivers need their friends and family to lift their spirits and get them back on track.
So, here are 3 easy things you can do to help your caregiver friends.
As the days get dark and the work feels long, spread some love this winter!
Give your caregiver friends a night off.
When we stretch ourselves thin, working long hours and never taking time to rest, we eventually hit a wall. And that wall-crash is often when we lose strength and find ourselves in funks.
Caregivers tend to be afraid to ask for help. And they tend to be afraid to take breaks. Because in their minds, taking a break is equivalent to leaving their beloved seniors all alone.
Although it is out of good intention, this behavior can be extremely dangerous to caregivers’ wellbeing. Mainly, because it results in caregivers pushing themselves to the brink of exhaustion.
That’s where you, the friend, come in.
If you have some extra time to spare, share your time with your caregiving friend. Offer to cover for your friend one night, and give him or her a night off. And don’t back down if they say no at first. Sometimes a pushy friend is a better friend.
Go on a caregiving visit.
If you’re worried about taking sole control for a night, or you simply don’t have the time, tagging along with your caregiving friends for an hour or two can help just as well.
Sometimes, the hardest part about a job is thinking that you’re in it alone. And that loneliness can snatch away even the toughest caregiver’s strength.
This season, show your caregiving friends that you’re there for them. Show your friends they are not alone in their endeavors and join them on one of their caregiving visits. Even if you aren’t able to help out technically, just being by your friend’s side can really make a difference in the atmosphere of caring.
Plus, it’s always nice to have a friend to chat with while you work.
Plan something fun.
If you notice your caregiver friends getting overwhelmed by their work, trying planning something fun for them.
Get them out of the house and out of their usual routine. Plan an event with friends, snacks, wine. Or plan something small and cozy with a bowl of popcorn and a heartwarming film.
It doesn’t matter what the specifics are, as long as you are creating a pleasant and relaxing time for your friends.
We always talk about the importance of creating set times to take breaks from caregiving. But often caregivers have trouble doing this on their own.
That’s when it takes a friend to step in and help.