Making Time For What Matters

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By Martie Cruz


Well, we're just about a week into the new year. Some people are well into their 2017 resolutions, while others might have chosen to wait until all the holiday decorations come down after the Epiphany before getting started. Either way, the time has officially come.

 

We recently heard someone say that resolutions are divided into two categories: consumer and creative. Consumer resolutions tend to be the ones people want to cut out or cut back on: sugar, for example, or Facebook. Creative resolutions, on the other hand, are promises that we make to enrich our lives. It could be journaling, knitting or drawing every day, spending more quality time with a loved one, praying or meditating more often, or getting more exercise.

 

Of course, what all of these things have in common is that they take time – something that very few people caring for an older loved one ever have. But they are just as important to our health and overall well-being as the consumer resolutions – maybe even more so.

 

Here are some ways that you can eke out a little time this year for your creative resolutions:

 

  • Multi-task: If you're caring for a senior loved one who is able to keep a creative resolution of their own, designate a little time each day or week to work on them together. Being able to spend time together in companionable silence, with each person accomplishing something that's important to them, is a win-win.

 

  • Make a trade: Often, we make consumer resolutions because the things we are consuming get in the way of us being or doing what we really want. This year, instead of saying "I'm giving up watching tv late at night" and leaving it at that, try "Instead of staying up late watching tv, I'm going to journal for fifteen minutes and then get a good night's sleep."

     
  • Ask for help: Many family caregivers do it all. But do you really have to? One trick is to write down everything you do for your older loved on in a day (or over the course of a week), and then see what you can delegate to other family members or friends. You may also consider using a professional CAREGiver for some of those tasks.

 

For more information about caring for yourself so you can better care for others, please contact us.

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