Creating Structure: The Importance of Daily Schedules
A daily schedule can at once organize our time and provides meaning to daily tasks. We visualize a goal in our mind, we write it down, and we do it. Schedules can benefit everybody regardless of age. If you are family caregiver, creating a schedule for your loved one can help them structure their day and find meaning in daily tasks however difficult or easy they may be. Looking forward to activities and planning on accomplishing tasks can be affirming and provide security for aging individuals.
Today, we go over how to create a schedule for your loved one. We begin by explaining what a daily or weekly routine is, the benefits of creating such a plan, and some tips to make the process easier. Not only can this be a great way to help your loved one structure their day, but it can be beneficial for you insofar as it can allow you to spend more time with them.
What does a daily schedule look like?
A schedule is an organized list, often on a daily or weekly basis, in which you record your plans, goals, and activities. For example, setting a wake-up time for Saturday, exercising at 7:00 a.m., making breakfast at 8:30 a.m., and taking the kids to soccer practice by 10 a.m. is an example of a detailed schedule. Having such a schedule or list of tasks to accomplish can help start your day on the right note and provide a clear structure for the rest of your day. Schedules are not just for running errands but can serve as useful flag posts to remind you to care for yourself and others. For example, some people schedule doing one nice thing for another person during the day, or some people use schedules to remind their loved one to take their medications. In sum, keeping a schedule can be a convenient way to make your life easier, as well as help you and others maintain healthy habits.
If you are a family caregiver, then you might recognize that your aging loved one may be less independent than before. But this does not mean they should not structure their day. They just need a little help. As a caregiver, you can work with them to figure out how best to structure their day.
Where to start?
As a starting point, try dividing the day into morning, afternoon, and night. Then, work with your loved one to come up with the list of activities best suitable to them, their abilities, and their lifestyle. Here’s an example:
- Wake up and get dressed (7:00 a.m.)
- Prepare breakfast (7:30 a.m.)
- Take Medications (8:30 a.m.)
- Go for a walk (10:00 a.m.)
- Call Family (11:00 a.m.)
- Eat lunch (Noon)
- Rest (1:00 p.m.)
- Go to grocery store (3:00 p.m.)
- Eat dinner (6:00 p.m.)
- Load dishwasher (7:00 p.m.)
- Take a shower (8:00 p.m.)
- Watch TV/Talk to family (8:30 p.m.)
This example is just a template, and it can be formatted very differently. With the proliferation of technological devices, planning and setting reminders has never been easier. Sometimes, however, it can be more convenient just to write it down in a notebook. Ultimately, scheduling these small tasks throughout the day can feel good, knowing that you and your loved one can look back at the day having accomplished a lot.
If you have any questions, plea call ElderCare at Home at 888-285-0093 or visit our website.