Prioritize your time at home and at work. Keep a calendar of activities to help you identify priorities and conflicts. Keep a calendar for your loved one so that they understand your tight schedule. Get them to help you plan your time between work and caregiving. If they can see how stretched you are, they will be less likely to make consistently unreasonable demands.
Learn to delegate. Share your responsibilities with others. Don't be afraid to ask for help, and don't feel guilty because you need help. It's not a sign of weakness to admit you can't do it alone. It's a sign of maturity, and it will help your loved one to gain a "team" of caregivers instead of just you.
Help your company recognize your needs and the needs of other employed caregivers. Be a leader in helping employers recognize that caregiving is a growing issue that needs to be recognized.
Keep communication channels open with everyone you work with, especially your supervisors. Do your best to stay in touch, even when you're away from the office.
Use your company's resources. Remember that businesses want to keep good employees. If you give your best effort, they'll be more willing to appreciate your situation and help you find flexibility to work.
Use your vacation time to actually take a vacation and nurture yourself. Even if it's only a day trip away, you need the time to rest, get your thoughts together and remember that life goes on.
Make time for you every day. Do what works for you. Spend time with friends and family members, or participate in a group. Spend time alone. Plant a garden, go for long walks, read, take a hot aromatherapy bath, listen to music or go shopping for something that makes you feel good about yourself. Do whatever makes you feel better. Don't let a day go by that you don't include things that are important to you. If you are completely stressed out, you'll be no good at work or at caregiving.
This content was last reviewed on 12/28/2011.