You might have told yourself that there’s no way that you can fit in time for relaxing, exercise, or anything else that’s just for you. But you might find that if you break up those activities or get creative with them, you could get more time for you than you think.
Meditate or Do Deep Breathing.
Mediation and deep breathing exercises are both excellent for clearing your mind, bringing your blood pressure down, and allowing you to have a few moments when you’re not in demand. One of the ways to do this regularly is to set aside time either at the beginning or the end of your day. Five minutes at either time can be beneficial for you. You might even consider working this into your morning and your evening routine.
Do Micro Workouts.
Exercise is something that a lot of caregivers say they don’t have time to do. If you focus on doing micro workouts, or smaller bits of exercise, you can get a lot more exercise in than you think possible. Take a few minutes to stretch or to walk in place while you return a phone call. You can also find tons of short workout ideas on social media sites like YouTube or Instagram.
Use “Car Time” for You.
If you spend a lot of time in the car, you might want to consider making some of that car time about you. Listen to favorite podcasts or audiobooks. Make phone calls to friends or relatives via hands-free devices. Or spend that time quietly if a little bit of peace and quiet is what you truly need.
Brainstorm What Gives You Joy.
If none of these ideas feel like something that works for you, take some time to brainstorm activities that give you joy. You might find that specific crafts recharge you or that a bubble bath a few times a week gives you a boost. No matter what it is that gives you that happy feeling, put it on your list.
Start Scheduling Yourself into Your Day.
Where many caregivers fall down with taking time for themselves is that other things take priority. When you have some ideas about what to do, schedule those activities into your day. If you have a few minutes you could knit between dinner and heading to bed, set that time aside for yourself. For some caregivers that means literally blocking that time out in your planner or calendar. Look at this as an appointment with yourself.
Whatever you choose to do, remember to keep consistency in mind. The more consistent that you are with making sure you’re taking time for yourself, the easier it’s going to be to stick with it. That’s going to help you to be a more effective caregiver.