How can a caregiver equip themselves during the stressful holiday season?

Q: Being a caregiver is stressful on a daily basis. How can I equip myself this holiday season so I can remain a loving caregiver during the stressful holiday season?


A: Holidays are exciting and stressful. Being a caregiver adds additional stress. Expectations can lead to negative outcomes. Rather than continue to have unrealistic expectations, adjust your expectations to your current situation. First of all, find time for yourself. Meeting a friend for coffee or calling someone who makes you laugh can give you a needed boost. Family, friends and support groups can help to fill your tank. Decorating doesn’t have to be extensive and exhausting. Utilize the adage, less is more and set the holiday tone with meaningful decorations. Rather than shopping, take time to write a loving note to family and shop online to avoid the crowds. Be honest, hosting may not be an option, look to outside opportunities to lift your spirits. Plan an activity suitable for your loved one and have a friend, family member, or volunteer come spend time with your loved one. This could be as simple as listening to holiday music together. Free up an hour or two and just be. You may need to enlist the help of a companion for your loved one like Freedom Home Care respite services. When past traditions are no longer feasible, start a new one. This holiday season may find you in a different place, one that you are not used to – embrace the time and rewards of being a caregiver – set the tone with adjusting your expectations.


Ann Cesafsky

Licensed Social Worker