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Caring for Carers - Wellbeing and Self Care

Being a carer is often not a choice, it is a responsibility taken on to care for someone you love. One of the most important things to learn to do, is to be able to 'Ask for Help'.

One of the easiest ways to relief stress and clear the mind is to go for a walk.

Although some people think they do not want to be a burden to others, when we ask ourselves “would we want to be able to help a friend in the same situation?” The answer is often 'Yes, of course!'. .

Here are a few things to keep in mind to either support yourself, or to support a carer you know. Looking after the carer first, better enables them to look after their loved one:

Tip #1 - Self Care [Plan]

Managing your overall wellbeing by having a plan to put aside time for the things you enjoy and things to make your life easier. This includes looking after yourself physically, socially, emotionally, and financially.

Tip #2 - Gather your supports

As well as seeking formal supportive care to give you some breaks or respite, you can reach out to a group of friends and family to who want to assist, by making a roster. There are some great software programs for coordinating help like “Gather My Crew”

"For those who are chronically ill, most care giving is provided by family or friends in an informal way, usually unpaid." – Hall, et al 2022

Tip #3 - Financial support & your work

This can be a conversation with your employer to include flexible work options, which allows the carer to continue working, or it may require seeking funding or pooling resources.

Tip #4 - Access to Resources & Information

Knowing what to expect can give some relief and enable planning. However seeking assistance to seek out the right resources may be helpful, especially if you are not feeling up to it.

Tip #5 - Priorities for Carers

Research data shows: Orientation to the role of care giving, self-care, having breaks, having flexible healthcare, increasing supports, the need for information and resources and financial assistance.

Tip #6 - Emotional Support & Managing Stress

Learning on friends is OK, but often not enough. For some people, learning to regulate emotions can be a high priority. To do this, there are many resources that can be found online, or you may reach out and discuss with your counsellor: Someone like me, who knows lots of options to lower stress and feel calm. The Practical Cousellor

You may like to write below what types of self care you prefer to enjoy.

Reference: Hall, S., Rohatinsky, N., Holtslander, L., & Peacock, S. (2022). Caregivers to older adults require support: A scoping review of their priorities. Health & Social Care in the Community, 30(6), e3789–e3809.

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