Although long term caregiving creates a comparison to a marathon, I find it is more like an Indianapolis road race. Except….. there is NO established distance and finish line. Caregiver Pit Stops- Refuel/Refresh suggests ways to stay on course with scheduled breaks.
And….there are other deviations from the Indianapolis race. For example, there is no speed limit, only an occasional need for speed and no predictable collisions.
And yet, there will be collisions, urgent needs that require speed and a predictability as to what caregiving entails.
Caregiver Pit Stops- Refuel/Refresh
Regardless of your ability to stay on the caregiving track, you will require routine caregiver pit stops. Even if you recognize your need for a break, there is no one to flag you down.Actually, they make attempt to flag you down.
Sure, there are friends or family who recognize your approaching burn out. They see it, you know it and yet you continue to slog around the track.
As with caregiving itself, there are not clear markers or warning flags demanding you pull off the track. And yet, the burnout potential is enormous. Actually, caregivers can count on it!
Caregiver pit stops- Refuel/Refresh requires that you, the caregiver, STOP. Only you, the caregiver, can steer yourself away from the impending crash.
Care to Compare?
Those of us serving as caregivers are responsible.We represent selfless devotion in many other life arenas.
For example, we plan our days around caregiving needs. In addition,we schedule regular health appointments. Also, we manage car maintenance, grocery shopping, laundry and housekeeping routinely and predictably. And, our calendars are synced with phones, alerts and reminders.
Most of the time,these important logistics are performed admirably. As a result,we can check off the lists and cross off the performed duties.
BUT…here’s the rub: these are things we do and tasks we perform.
While tasks are necessary to support our “cared for”, they do not address OUR core needs. Regardless of our efficiency, it is when we get off the track and refuel that matters the most.
YOU, the caregiver hold the critical component in self maintenance. Therefore:
- Red flag yourself off the course regularly. If only for 15 minute intervals, your pit stops are essential.Elderly parent caregiver exhaustion- long term effects ,from this website, adds additional information on this topic.
- Establish non- negotiable habits and activities. For example, you WILL spend at least 15 minutes each day outside.
- Reach out to avoid burnout. Network community services, neighbors and family to allow yourself time off the track.
Would you like support with establishing and maintaining your time off? Email or call today to schedule complimentary session.