Self-care strategies for caregivers


I did a wonderful Time Out for Caregiver workshop with 51 amazing Parkinson’s caregivers, sponsored by the Parkinson Society BC on May 25th. We not only discussed  how to be a resilience caregiver (see post HERE), but also some self-care strategies.


• Find ways to sustain yourself. You are like lifesaving equipment… you don’t want it to burnout!
• While no one has the time or energy to do everything for everybody, find the time to do things that are most important to you. By establishing priorities, the most important needs are met and tasks are done.
• Set boundaries and decided what you are able and willing to do as a caregiver. By setting limits and standing behind them, you can help reduce guilt.
• Act from love, not debt. Think of caregiving as one person helping another out of love.
• Celebrate the small steps, accomplishments and victories!
• Take an active role. Develop  new skills/attitude – be assertive (or get an advocate)! Learn about PD, treatment options, ask questions, be involved! Ask for help, ask for second opinions, plan for your future, together. Know your options and make some decisions together.
• Take breaks. Do stuff that inspires you, excites you and truly de-stresses you.
• Talk, without judgment. No advice, feedback, just listening.
• Don’t let the disease define you. Remember that you are more than PD and are still the individuals you were before the diagnosis; but respect each others experience with PD… the PWP and CG have different experiences with PD and try and respect each others feeling/decisions etc.
… are there 1 or 2 of these you could put into action to help you live better as a Parkinson’s caregiver? much love.
—Parkinson Society Canada/British Columbia
—National Parkinson Foundation
—Parkinson’s Disease Foundation
—Kripalu Centre for Healthy Living
—Susan Impke FNP GNP
—Maria Sirios
—Alexis Abramson, PhD

2 thoughts on “Self-care strategies for caregivers

  1. I’m sure this was useful Kaitlyn. For a long time, we cared for GrannieBorders and it was very hard when we had to start accepting that we couldn’t do it all ourselves.

    One of the trickier aspects of having Parkie is the thought that one might have to become a care-receiver instead of a giver. Just hoping that the cure comes before I get to that stage!

    • Hi… and thanks for that perspective. I realize there may be guilt associated with being a ‘care receiver’ too, but hopefully you come to the conclusion that if the tables were reversed you would provide loving care. I’ve heard the perspective “Because in a relationship, you take care of each other”.

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