Stress reduction is a critical component of self-care when we caregiving. Personally, I tried to dismiss negative feelings as unhelpful until I talked to my guest Scott Lavitt. Scott is helping his mother care for his Dad who is in the mid-stages of Alzheimer’s.
Scott taught me simple mindfulness techniques that surprised me by how easily they worked. Facing a situation for which I had no control I embraced the anger that I was feeling. By embracing that feeling I became aware of why I felt that way. That awareness gave me some peace.
Additionally, that feeling of peace allowed me to realize that I am doing my best in a really difficult situation. I wish that I could say this awareness and peace made making a tough decision easier, it did not. What I did gain was the self-understanding that I was handling things as well as they could be handled.
Everyone needs to learn how to be kinder to themselves, but it’s especially important for those of us caring for a loved one with memory loss.
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