Routines are Key to Success!
We get it. Caregivers are busy, exhausted, and often overwhelmed. If you're spending lots of time caring for your loved one, the last thing you need is more frustration or struggles, like when they eat or get dressed.
A routine simply means doing the same things around the same time daily. This provides structure and flow to the day. A good morning routine may include waking up at 9 am, use the bathroom, brush teeth, groom hair, get dressed, then sit down to breakfast.
Ways Routines Help
Older adults don't like being bossed around. A daily routine gives structure and purpose throughout the day. It becomes something you simply do at this time of the day. Your loved one is much more likely to 'go with the flow'.
No one likes to be thrown for a loop or confused. When you know what's coming, stressful reactions are less likely to occur. Routines help us anticipate the next activity and mentally prepare. We're more likely to go along with things and willing to participate in the activity.
Less decisions for you to make
Being in charge and making tough decisions that affect your loved one(s) is tiring. Routines reduce the number of decisions you have to make, so why not save your energy for something else - like selfcare!
Improve your sleep
Good quality sleep is crucial for overall wellbeing, and especially for cognitive well-being. When the body is in rhythm with a routine sleep time, it is easier to fall asleep. This benefits both you and your loved one's sleep!
Experience more joy
It's easy to get wrapped up in busy caregiving tasks and forget to enjoy spending time with loved one. Find ways to incorporate moments of joy in your day by cheduling special time with your loved one. For instance, you could share a cup of coffee together each morning, share aloud a morning devotional, go for a stroll around the block, or sing a favorite song of your loved one.
Consistent routines can be a life saver for a caregiver! Conserve your energy and help manage stress by being intentional with your time.