Tuesday Tips for Caregivers – Working While Caregiving
Millions of adults who are simultaneously caregiving and working will have great difficulty balancing various demands, e.g. caring for their loved one, succeeding at their job, managing a household, supporting their children, etc. Therefore, many caregivers burnout from exhaustion. Being a caregiver will challenge you to prioritize and manage your time like no other chapter in your life has before. But you are, fortunately, not alone, because there are techniques you can learn and resources available to help you manage your role as a caregiver.
How to Manage Time and Find Solutions
- Keep a schedule: Write down everything you have to do in an agenda or calendar. As stressful as it may be to keep track of chores this way, it ultimately saves you a lot of pain from having to remember all those details in your head, which can also save you from forgetfulness.
- Write down your weak points as a caregiver: This will help you stay attuned to areas where you need help. You can take this list and try to find resources to help you when things become overwhelming.
- Consider finances carefully: Look into what kind of insurance your loved one has. If long-term home care is covered, then you may be at an advantage. If not, you may have to schedule a meeting with your loved one and/or other family members to see how you can contribute financially. Additionally, talk to an attorney who can help you plan for your loved one’s long-term care. This last part is especially important if your loved one can no longer make decisions for him/herself.
- Explore community resources: Remember that list you made of your weaknesses? Explore resources in your surrounding area that can help cater to your needs. These resources can range from professional home care services to psychotherapy counseling to help you manage your stress.
- Don’t do it all on your own: Enlist the help of family members or find an adult day center to give you a break. Remember: you have your own life to manage and, perhaps, your family to care for, so try not to spread yourself out too thin.
- Don’t forget about Assisted Living Facilities and nursing homes: Deciding to place a loved one in one of these facilities is never an easy choice, but sometimes it is the best choice for everyone involved, even if your loved one is resistant at first.
- Rely on technology: There are now myriad of ways to plan, schedule, communicate, and problem solve, and that is all due to technology. If you are able, invest in a smart phone or a tablet that can easily download useful apps. You may find that you are better able to manage your caregiving responsibilities because of the usefulness of technology. Also, you can access the internet to find fast solutions to problems and you may even be able to install a camera system in your loved one’s house to check in on them if you are far away.
- Talk to your employer: If you find that caregiving is negatively impacting your career, you may need to have an honest talk with your employer about how you can organize your work schedule around your current demands. Some employers may be less flexible than others, but you may be surprised! Look to see if your company complies with the Family and Medical Leave Act, which can allow you some unpaid leave, or see if your company has paid family leave. It is worth seeing if your company offers any caregiving resources that can help you. All you can do is talk to your employer and be completely honest with them about your struggles.
If you would like to contact us here at ElderCare at Home, please call 888-285-0093 or visit our website!