The start of a new year is a great time to make life changes that can improve your physical and mental health. As a family caregiver, it's important that you focus on self-care as well as caring for your senior loved one, because if you aren't taking care of yourself, you won't be able to care for them, either. Here are 10 ideas for ways to improve your own well-being and state of mind in the new year.
1. Eat more produce
The American Heart Association recommends that we fill at least half of our plates with fruits and vegetables so that we can consume the proper amount our bodies need. All produce counts, which means that whether you use fresh vegetables and fruits, frozen, or canned versions, you are doing your part in reaching that goal.
2. Exercise more
Commit to finding a way that you can do something that you or your senior loves while getting physical exercise and body movement at the same time. Win-Win! This will make getting your daily exercise more enjoyable and also help you be more likely to commit to it.
3. Start a gratitude journal
Take a few minutes each day to write down the things in your life that you are grateful for. Even on days where everything seems to be going wrong, train yourself to always look for the things that are going right. This may help train your brain to look for the positive and boost your mood.
4. Drink more water
Did you know that water does more than quench thirst and keep you hydrated? Water lubricates the joints in your body, cushions the brain and spinal cord, regulates your body temperature, flushes bodily wastes, and helps maintain blood pressure. Bottoms-up!
5. Get better sleep
Make sure that you and the senior in your life are getting the proper amount of sleep. Cut back on caffeine, avoid day time naps, and make getting a good night’s rest a priority so that you can function as best as you can during the day.
6. Make your health a priority
When was the last time you had a doctor check-up? Put your health and the health of your senior receiving home care at the top of your list, and make sure that you and your loved ones are getting proper dental and health care so that you can stay healthy and live a long life.
7. Ask for help
Let this be the year where you aren’t afraid to ask for or hire help. Home care professionals are trained and ready to help you with the care of your senior parent or loved one. Quit trying to do everything yourself and allow others to help in areas that you need it. Your mental health will thank you!
8. Do what you love
Find time to do the things you love. Take a class, join a club, or pull out your old knitting materials. Just be sure to put yourself first every once in a while.
9. Get organized
Living in a big unorganized mess will add to your stress. Take time to get yourself and your senior organized this year and see how it affects your mood.
10. Pay it forward
Tell the people in your life how you feel about them and find little good deeds that you can do to make people smile. You’ll be amazed at how doing things for others makes you feel.
If you or an aging loved one is considering home care in Palmetto, FL, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers of Bradenton today at (941) 499-5946.