Pause. Breathe. Be Mindful as a Caregiver.

As a woman we are bred to be caregivers.  As daughters we provide care to our aging parents; as wives to our husbands; as mothers to our children and as professionals, to our career and our personal success.  Over the years experts have encouraged us to have a ‘work-life balance’ but have not been successful in telling us how to achieve this balance.  Learning to pause, to breathe, and to truly see our role will help us understand where we fit into the mix of events that make up our lives. 

We must become fully aware of the environment and the circumstances surrounding the challenges faced when giving of ourselves. The art of mindfulness is described as a moment to moment nonjudgmental, compassionate, awareness.  It allows us to take a second look at our first thought, impulse, or reaction.  Once you have learned the art of mindfulness the boundaries of your inner strength are limitless.  An inner strength that will heal us and allow us to continue to provide care to those we love.  

Journaling is a powerful tool to help us pause; allow your journaling to flow from your emotions.  Don’t sensor it.  Don’t downplay the intensity of emotion you are feeling.  

In our daughter role, watching parents’ age is not always accepting that they are aging.  We have to accept our own biases towards the process of aging and recognize our fears before we can properly care for our parents in need.  Aging is a gift and sharing the wisdom that comes with aging is the icing on the cake!  Allow yourself to learn from them!  

As wives and mothers we nurture each relationship with unconditional love.  Our role as a caregiver has an end goal of being in a relationship that is emotionally sound and strengthened through commitment and shared experiences.  Without the ability to properly breathe, to feel our lungs expand and contract, to feel our heart beating, we neglect a key factor within the relationship, us. 

As professionals we work diligently on our careers.  This diligence needs to include compassion towards our imperfections.  We must achieve an awareness that will hold us upright, moving us forward in a positive light. We cannot allow the choices of others to define who we are. Once we embrace these imperfections, our passion will lead the way up the career ladder of success.  

So, learn to pause.  Learn to breathe.  Learn to be mindful as a caregiver not only to others but to yourself.

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