Deciding to take care of a disabled or an aging loved one is incredibly brave and selfless, but you have to be sure that you take care of yourself while taking care of someone else. To strike a balance, you may need a bit of insight. 

The Family Caregiver Alliance offers guidance on the subject. See how to care for yourself just as well as you take care of your loved one. 

Create goals  

Rather than concentrate solely on tending to your loved one, make some time to create some goals for yourself. For instance, are there any caregiving skills that you would like to either learn or improve on? Maybe you need to start eating better or engaging in exercise to keep your spirits up and improve your physical health. Whatever goal you decide on, write it down and create a plan of action for reaching that goal. 

Keep your stress to a minimum 

Maybe you reduced your hours or quit your job entirely to be a caregiver. With either option, you have to learn how to both recognize and manage your stress. This is especially essential if a great deal of your stress comes from being a caregiver. You may need help taking care of your loved one to better manage your stress, or you may need to remind yourself of what is and is not under your control. 

Learn how to communicate  

As a caregiver, you have to learn how to properly communicate with the person in your care and anyone helping you. For instance, focus more on how you feel rather than how people make you feel. Also, remember that listening well is just as essential for effective communication as speaking in specific terms. 

This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.