There are so many career lines you can pursue one of this is caregiving. Not all of them will work for you. That’s because the level of commitment required varies. Caregiving is one career line that is full of challenges. People who volunteer to pursue it are seen as volunteers. In caregiving, you can expect exhaustion and burnout. Taking care of people who barely can help themselves is like living inside two bodies. At least one body is healthy but your client requires more of your attention that you forget to take care of your own body. What follows is stress and isolation.
Caregivers are seen as people who have to sacrifice over 80% of their lifestyles for the sake of the sick or disabled person. It’s a calling with a very expensive price tag. Even if you are very much willing to help, continued helping will come with haunting you with health issues, exhaustion, and high stress.
It starts perfectly on your first day. With time, you can start experiencing signs such as withdrawal, feeling hopeless, regular sickness, losing interest in your hobbies, sleeping disorders, gaining/losing weight, urge to hurt someone and such signs. If you are already experiencing some of these, you need to act fast. Here are some tips to keep caregiver burnout at bay.
Everybody requires assistance no matter what career line he/she is in. well, caregiving is largely seen as a solo job. Everybody in the family sees you as the right person to take care of the client. However, this is a human being and the burden can never fall on one person at all. People have a wide range of needs that you cannot satisfy all of them. The best way to proceed is to engage all family members including the children and let them know of ways they can help you.
It is true that most of the caregivers quit the job for the simple reason of exhaustion. They complain of overloaded work. Most of the caregivers also say that taking care of the elderly or the sick people is something shared very unequally by members of the family. Women at least try to do something in helping caregivers. Men are most likely to give financial assistance. You can request that the money is used to pay another caregiver on a temporal basis as you take leave for a few weeks. You need a break to catch up with the world.
Keep in mind caregiving has value
As always, people rank careers depending on the income and how fun it is. If you are to go with earnings, caregiving is probably not the best career. There is not much fun taking care of those who have no strength. If you keep on comparing what you do and what your friends are doing, it will make you feel like a dwarf. Always remember that you deliver value to those who require them. Even if you don’t get the equal measure, your heart should rejoice. Giving feels better than receiving.
Bring on board a mentor
Caregiving can be compared to the jungle. If you don’t know what to expect, the lions might eat you up or you could lose your path. You need someone who has adventured in caregiving before. These are people who have offered their services for a long time. They will advise you on how to respond to situations and how to ensure that emotions don’t step in. many caregivers burnout because they tend to use their friends as mentors. Your friend should be someone you have fun with. Don’t ruin the fun moments by offloading all your caregiving stresses. That’s why you need both a mentor and friends.
- Mass communication
When you are taking care of a person, the family, friends, and well-wishers see you as their eyes and ears. They expect you to update them regularly on how the client is doing. Many are times you will be receiving calls and text messages that require your response. Some will keep you on the phone for hours. As a caregiver, time is of the essence. You may not have time to respond to each call. To ensure that you don’t appear rude, invent some form of mass communication to keep everyone at per with how the elder or the sick person is doing. It could be a Whats App group, a site or any other.
Learn to learn
Let it not be that you appear to be forced to take care of an elder. To ensure that you don’t get exhausted, you need to be prepared. We all do examinations. When you are well prepared, you flow. In the event when you are not prepared, you are faced with a mountain. It’s the same thing. If you clearly understand the condition your client is going through, then it will be easy taking care of him/her. At least you will have a clue of what to do every time he/she requires your input. Whether it’s a certain disease or gaining, make sure you educate yourself well enough.
- Stay healthy
Even if keeping the client comfortable is your top priority, don’t forget to comfort your body as well. You need to ensure that you continue taking balanced diet, get enough sleep and exercise regularly. Once you are fit, it will be easier to take care of the client. Problems arise when you are in a position where you also require assistance. Research shows that about 13% of caregivers will die even before the clients they serve to pass on. Chronic stress is seen as a major contributor here. How can you give a loan when you need a loan first? Think of that.
Put yourself in the position of the client
It is obvious that you would not wish things to be the other way round; the client serving you at your time of need. This thinking alone will keep you motivated. Also, think of if the client was in good state. They would probably applaud what you are doing for them. Just take pride in what you do because tomorrow, it could be you next.
Passion is the solution to everything. If you believe you can do it, and you love to do it, it will come to be. Cherish your caregiving moments.