Filling Our Own Tanks When We Are Taking Care Of Others

Automobile gas gauge indicating that the tank is empty

A compassionate self-assessment

The word “should” can dominate the day for many caregivers. And although our “shoulds” may include self-care, sometimes our attitudes and habits can marginalize its importance and become roadblocks.

Create movement of these roadblocks with a compassionate self-assessment. Reflecting on the following questions and considering the importance of holding space for ourselves, giving ourselves permission to focus on personal health and wellness, and seeking the support we need.

  • Do I believe I deserve self-care?
  • Can I take time for myself without feeling guilty?
  • Am I okay with slowing down sometimes?
  • Do I have a routine that includes doing something every week that replenishes me?
  • Am I willing to seek and accept help from others?
  • Do I have a small group of people I can call on for support?
  • Have I been setting appropriate limits in my work and personal life?
  • Do I have opportunities to talk through my dilemmas and concerns with a trusted friend or relative?
  • Do I have a spiritual practice and/or use stress reduction techniques, such as deep breathing or meditation?
  • Am I including exercise in my schedule?
  • Do I generally nourish my body with nutritious food?
  • Am I resting when I am tired?
  • Do I attend to my health care needs, such as getting preventative care and regular checkups?

From our Summer 2017 magazine

Caring for a loved one with dementia: You’re not alone. For caregivers in the Monadnock Region, help and support are available through a network of resources.