We focus on Caregiver wellness in this episode of the Sage Aging podcast. I was joined by author Susanne White to discuss the four key areas of caregiver wellness and the importance of caregiver self-care. Susanne’s approach is light-hearted and relatable. A former family caregiver herself, Susanne White is also known as the “Caregiver Warrior” and she actively works to empower family caregivers along their caregiving journey. Check the links section below for a link to Susanne’s new book and her connection points.
Click the player above to listen in or head over to our YouTube channel to watch the episode.
4 Key Areas of Caregiver Wellness
In her new book Self-Care for Caregivers, Susanne breaks caregiver wellness down into four key areas and provides tips and guidance for caring for yourself while you care for others. If we can pay attention to our own wellness, it will empower us to be better caregivers for others. The four key areas of wellness are:
Emotional: It’s important to take your “emotional temperature” every single day. Are you feeling upset, angry, guilty, composed, happy, or content? Identify where you are and do something about it, if necessary.
Physical: Are YOUR physical needs being met? If you are hungry, thirsty, tired, sick, etc…, take care of it. The other “things” will wait. Your loved one’s wellness depends on yours!
Spiritual: This looks different for everyone. For some, it is faith and prayer, for others, meditation or journaling. Whether you find your inner peace through a walk or in a book, it’s about tapping into that inner you. To the place from which you draw strength.
Practical: Caregivers have lots of “to dos.” Creating a circle of support and a system for the day-to-day makes all the difference in the world. Do you have an overnight bag ready in case of an emergency? Is paperwork in order and accessible? Perhaps prepping meds ahead for a week or two would be helpful. Find ways to simplify your tasks.
Liz Craven, along with her husband Wes, owns Pro-Ad Media, publisher of Sage Aging ElderCare Guide, serving the local community for over 28 years. Liz lives in Lakeland and is very active in the local community, specifically in the area of aging. Liz serves on a number of local boards and committees including the Lakeland Vision and Age Friendly Lakeland.