Tips for carers, by carers
Scope community team
If you’ve just started caring for a friend or loved one, it can be a sudden and dramatic change, or it can happen very subtly and almost unnoticed. According to Carers UK, each day 6,000 people start caring and it can be a daunting prospect, but it can also become overwhelming for those of us who have been doing it for years. Today we’re sharing some tips and advice from carers for carers and hopefully some of them will make your days a little easier.
Implement structure: Having structure to each day helps give it purpose, promotes good habits and is vital for sleep patterns.
Stay calm: There are going to be hurdles. Things will rarely if ever go quite to plan, but keeping calm helps you be constructive and stay mindful of the important things.
Look after yourself: You’re just as important as the person you’re caring for. As @GoRowe said in his recent guest post, ‘…as a carer I spend so much time being aware of someone else’s needs, but for every week of every month from now on, I’m going to do my best to be aware of my own needs too.’ Take a page out of his book and take a moment for yourself.
Accept the role: You might not like the connotations of the word, but accepting the label of ‘carer’ means you can get the support you need. As @Katherine_OTMH said in her guest post, ‘Once I realised our lives would be different I always wanted to embrace it. To turn challenges into opportunities and to find happiness and fulfilment right where sadness or isolation could have easily set up camp.’
Find ways to make it easier: It can take a lot to get through each day, but simple things can make all the difference. In her recent guest post, @SerenaP said, ‘I purposefully and intentionally think of a minimum of three things to be grateful for each day.’
What advice would you give to a carer who is just starting out or has been a carer for years?