Let’s see if this sounds at all familiar. Somewhere around 2 PM, your eyes feel like they’re as heavy as can be, and you’re not sure how you’ll get through the next hour of your day. You begin to realize this happens more often than not, but you just can’t put your finger on ‘why’?
Are you so exhausted that you don’t even notice it? When you wake up, you do you go straight into the tasks of the day? And repeat this over and over and over again?
You may have reach burnout, an overlooked stage, and a critical one. A state of being that will crumble your immune system, blur your thinking, and irregulate your emotions.
As a caregiver, you may feel ashamed to share how you are feeling with others. After all, your responsibilities are important, and you wouldn’t want others to think you cannot handle the tasks. ‘Less than’ – ‘weak’ – ‘unable’ who wants to carry those labels around????
So, you keep on keeping on, because it’s your role, it’s your duty, you’re willing to make the sacrifice.
You cannot keep up this pace. Sorry. You can’t. If you are not a caregiver and reading this, perhaps you know someone that is? I ask that you pay attention to these signs for them. Caregivers can be a tricky bunch and don’t always speak up for help.
Signs to watch for in others and yourself:
Moods seem to be one of the biggest clues. Someone who is ordinarily lighthearted is snappy or anxious more often than not.
Cognitive problems can sneak in. You become so focused on the issue at hand; you lose sight of other things going on. Your memory may be affected, which stirs up another round of ‘oh no’s….’—adding to your overall anxiety.
You’re not fully present at your job, or day to day tasks that were once easy for you to do are frustrating. Putting together an everyday meal feels like one of the biggest hurdles in your life at the moment.
So, what’s the answer? Perhaps surprisingly enough, the simplest of things put into practice can help.
Organizing can be one of the most effective solutions. Having everything in its place, making a list of things to do, and checking it off, all can be a lifesaver. Piles create anxiety, and you’ll never find items. Searching endlessly for that one thing you KNOW you put in a particular spot – will drive you crazy. But you put that one thing away in the middle of a frantic day. Stop. Make an hour on your calendar 2x a week for just organizing.
Adding something positive to your day, easy to do, but you have to do it. Procrastinating and repeatedly saying, “I can’t because…..”. Stop. Start and end your day with something positive. It doesn’t have to take hours – truly! Even a 20-minute walk, a long bath, a cup of tea, long deep breaths while closing your eyes and imagining peace.
You’re an amazing human being; you can change your thinking and change your life. It may not solve everything, but the power within you is tremendous. Just head it in the right direction.