Family Caregiving while Working
Caregiving consumes a lot of time. Many individuals who are caregiving for their loved ones are also working full-time jobs. According to the Family Caregiving Alliance, 1 in 6 North Americans working full-time or part-time jobs have also had to care for a loved one outside of work. What’s more? Their caregiving roles consumed at least 15 hours of the week, and people reported that their role as a caregiver impacts their work life.  On top of all this, caregivers may have other familial responsibilities, like being a mother, father, or a spouse.
If you are a family caregiver and find yourself having trouble balancing several responsibilities, how can you work through it? Consider these tips :
- Talk to your boss (if you feel safe doing so): This can be difficult for some people to do. But it can be extremely important to let your manager or boss know what is going on. If issues begin emerging at work, it could lead to problems if your manager does not have any contextual knowledge. Some managers may be unapproachable, and you have to navigate these situations carefully. If there is a human resources department at your job, perhaps you can confide in them and they may be able to relay information confidentially. But people can be very understanding during circumstances like this, and you might be surprised just how flexible some managers are willing to be to help you out. Be sure to let them know that you are still committed to your work, but that circumstances at home are making it very difficult to balance everything.
- Consider working part time AND see if you can be compensated: Some companies recognize personal crises and allow you take leave, or you can reduce your hours so you can commit more of your day to your loved one. Regardless of the arrangements, see what programs might be in place in your area. Doing some online research or talking to your employer may lead you to resources on how to get compensated.
- Take care of yourself: With everything that is going on, this is easier said than done. But if you can devote just a few minutes to an hour of your schedule to do some self-care, whether that is exercise, meditation, or venting to a friend, then you can avoid burning out.
- Don’t forget about other family members or friends: If you are caring for your parent, and if you have siblings, then team up! Organize a family meeting and talk about what everybody’s responsibility should be. This can lessen your load tremendously and lead to better outcomes for all parties concerned.
- If it’s affordable, hire help: There are agencies and nurse registries all over the U.S. that refer professional caregivers to you. If you are in a financial situation that can allow you to pay for assistance, then this can be a huge burden lifted from you. For instance, ElderCare at Home refers caregivers that are best suited to you and your loved one’s preferences (i.e. personality, experience levels, etc.). Professional caregivers can be life savers!
We really hope that these tips can be useful to you. Balancing all of these responsibilities can be stressful, but many people are able to make it through. If you have any questions, call ElderCare at Home at 888-285-0093 or visit our website.