Managing Caregiver Stress
Posted by Gloria May, CNA
I’ve been employed as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) for the past 25 years. I never thought I would work as a CNA for this long, but when you have passion for what you do, it’s easy to find comfort in your work. It gives me great pleasure to serve the people within my community. If I can put a smile on someone’s face each day, that makes my life worth living.
But at times, there are occasions when being a caregiver can be stressful. To reduce stress when caring for others, I first take the time to take care of my own well-being.
Whether you are a CNA or a caregiver of a loved one, take time to take care of yourself. Manage your stress with exercise and meditation, and definitely take time off from your responsibilities for rejuvenation.
I manage daily stress with exercise. Most of the time I use exercise equipment, such as the treadmill or the elliptical. When the weather is nice I take walks for 30 to 60 minutes outside.
Meditation and Rest
When meditating I find a quiet place inside or outside to relax, and free my mind from all of the stressors of the day. I make sure to get six to eight hours of sleep each night. With proper rest, I am energized to make it through another day.
Taking Time Off
Although exercise and getting the proper rest helps manage everyday stress, taking vacations periodically to spend time with my family and friends is also very uplifting. I work hard, but I play hard too! Vacation time is important to me. It is the time for me to relax, and leave all of my worries behind.
When you take care of yourself, you’ll be more productive physically and mentally ̶ so that you can give the best care to the people who need you.