Are you tired? How about utterly exhausted? Who isn’t in today’s world! And for caregivers, that’s especially true.
An article published earlier this month by Investopedia revealed that stay-at-home parents work roughly 98 hours per week, an average that only goes up for those balancing a career with family duties.
And when you’re putting in hours like that, it’s vital to have a strategy to combat stress and caregiver burnout.
Here are six tips to help you stay healthy, happy, and bring your best self to your interactions with others.
Tips to Combat Caregiver Burnout
Connect with others.
Social support is a must for parents! Studies show that when caregivers are connected and have an open dialogue on stress and burnout, it serves as a buffer against it. So, carve out time for friends, family, and build a tribe you can lean on.
Re-evaluate your stress.
Mindset is a critical component of navigating stress. The truth is, how we look at our circumstances directly affects how they impact us. So, explore areas of your life that make you grateful. And if you’re confronting parenting challenges, ask yourself, “how can I use these as opportunities to grow?”
Make small changes.
Do you feel trapped by your parenting responsibilities? If so, make small changes to help you manage stress over the long haul. For example, try delegating tasks among family members, cutting down on commitments, or scheduling carpools with other parents.
Let go of perfectionism.
No one’s perfect. And when we shoot for such an unrealistic mark, we put unnecessary pressure on ourselves—creating stress and fostering feelings of shame when we don’t live up to our expectations.
So, drop the “should” statements and swap them for “it would be great if I had more energy to…” instead. Reframing like this will help you deal with your current reality rather than what you think it should be.
Self-care is a critical component of managing stress and burnout recovery. Yet, being a caregiver is a full-time job, so taking long breaks or vacations for yourself isn’t always realistic. But you can take tiny moments throughout your day.
Try sitting in your car to listen to a guided meditation after grocery shopping or going into the bathroom for five minutes to practice deep breathing to enhance your resilience.
Has stress brought you to the point of detachment? If so, take the time to re-explore and connect to your values.
What are the meaningful aspects of parenting? Don’t get lost in the drudgery of your role. Instead, dive deep, and don’t forget the purpose behind your work.
Need more support?
We provide a wide range of wraparound mental health services that support caregivers and help kids heal. Contact us online or call 1-406-245-6539 to learn more about help available through Youth Dynamics.
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