|Is it just me or do you sometimes feel anxious too? Most of us are caregivers, which is an extremely stressful job by itself. Yet, many are working a regular job while caregiving, and raising kids!!
It’s called the sandwich generation, but I think at least at times, it could be called the pressure cooker generation! How can we manage the stress of all the events in our home, when added to the community, state, nation, and now the craziness of the world?I have some tips for you.
First, we must recognize we aren’t alone.
No situation is totally unique. Nearly 6 million people in the U.S. today are living with Alzheimer’s. There are nearly 16 million unpaid caregivers today. Someone else is going through the exact same thing as you. Others have been there and successfully made it through. (That should give us some hope.)
Can we try to focus on only the things that are in our control?
What benefit is there in worrying about something we cannot change or have no control over? Whether it’s your loved ones declining mental health or wars going on in the world. Our worry will not help either situation.
I saw a shirt with big, bold letters on it “IIWII” It stood for “It is what it is”. Whether good or bad, it is our reality. Being upset about it helps no one. Accepting this is our reality allows us to focus on possible solutions or ways to progress more smoothly.
Personally, I pray. I give my concerns to the creator of all things. He is infinitely wiser than me and has solutions he’s waiting to share if I only take a moment to ask. He has never let me down.
Live in the moment.
Much of our stress can be created by worrying about what tomorrow might bring. When we focus on how bad we are afraid things will get, we neglect to appreciate the good still in front of us.
An example of this is when we look at how a disease is expected to progress and begin worrying about how we will deal with it. While it’s great to be prepared, we need to reframe our focus back to today and be thankful for the abilities that are still present.
An attitude of gratitude relieves stress.
I challenge you to put it to the test. Start a gratitude journal or simply write down 3 things you are thankful for each day. They can be big or small things. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that you are training your mind to look for the positives instead of dwelling on all the negatives all around you.
You can actually form new neural pathways or tracks in your brain for your thoughts to follow!
If you’re not a journaling person and don’t want the pressure of a dated one, I feel ya! That’s me! That’s why I created a journal with no pre-printed dates, that also has some pictures, encouraging verses, and room for me to vent if I need to.
Here's a link if it sounds like something that might help you.