Support at difficult moments
The ideas in the first two sections can help safeguard your wellbeing over the long term, but there will be times when extra challenges come your way and your batteries are particularly low.
You might feel overwhelmed with feelings of frustration, sadness, anger, anxiety or hopelessness. At these times, right in the heat of the moment, it can be really helpful to have some additional strategies to hand - things that help keep you grounded and buy a little room to breathe.
Video: "What if looking after you feels really hard?"
Again, different people will find different things helpful at these times. The key is recognising how you are feeling and then doing something that helps to look after you. You might try:
counting slowly to yourself;
saying positive or calming things to yourself (e.g., ‘you can do this’; ‘it will get better’);
simple mindfulness, yoga or breathing exercises;
leaving the environment you are in for a short period (e.g., taking yourself into another room).
It has taken me many years to realise the importance of keeping my own batteries charged. I used to feel selfish taking time for myself, so I just didn’t bother. After a major burnout and being unable to care for my son, I now see it the other way round. Caring for myself is actually benefiting my son
The lives of family carers can change from one day to the next. Life can be very, very difficult and often it can be hard to see a way forward. Sometimes just focusing on looking after yourself in the here and now is the best and only thing you can do. With the right support things can get better. Just keep going.