If you are currently serving as an informal caregiver for an aging in place spouse, relative or friend you’re not alone. According to the latest figures, over 50 million Americans provide care to a loved one every year. One of the keys to staying refreshed as a caregiver is organization. If your organizational skills could use a little fine-tuning, the perfect time to make changes is at the start of a new year. Here are five organizational tips that will help you improve your caregiving efficiency.
Poor Time Management Feeds Caregiver Stress
Although being an informal caregiver is highly rewarding, it comes with daily challenges that can trigger caregiver stress, like:
- Social isolation
- Sleep deprivation
- Anxiety and depression
- Substance abuse
- Feelings of guilt or hopelessness
- Depressed immune system
- Financial difficulties
- Marital/relational problems
Poor time management can worsen these problems and, if they persist, caregiver burnout is possible- which ultimately affects the quality of life for both you and your care recipient.
Organizational Tips for Informal Caregivers
As a caregiver, staying more organized starts with these five tips:
1. Keep a digital calendar
Most professional caregivers use electronic calendars for keeping track of client appointments, activities and medications- so why not you? There are even