Meditation for CaregiversSeptember 25, 2023
If we’ve said it once, we’ll say it a thousand times: self-care is essential not only to a caregiver’s mental health, but to their ability to provide quality care. Though many caregivers have the misconception that taking care of themselves is selfish, it is far from that. With self-care, your mental and physical health is a priority. One great way to prioritize your mental health is through meditation.
Meditation for caregivers is the practice of focusing on the present moment to ground oneself– an extension of practicing mindfulness. It is a fantastic tool for reducing stress, anxiety, depression, and high blood pressure. If you’ve been curious about incorporating a meditation practice into your life, start with these simple applications.
When practicing meditation, remember…
Though it may feel strange at first, even a five or 10-minute meditation can have a substantial impact on your mental health. As you practice, remember that the point is to focus on your breath, body, and thoughts. You should maintain even breathing throughout your meditation. Your body should be intentionally relaxed. Your thoughts should not wander, but instead focus on the present moment or a particular mantra.
Start with guided meditations
If you’ve never meditated before, it’s daunting to know exactly where to start. Thankfully, there is a wide variety of easily accessible guided meditations for caregivers to follow. Some can be found on fitness apps, others through meditation websites, and others for free on YouTube. Start with shorter options, and as you grow more comfortable you can increase your time.
When you’re ready to start meditating without guidance, breathing meditations are some of the easiest practices. All you do is observe your inhalations and exhalations. You can do so simply by being mindful of your natural breathing, or by utilizing certain breathing techniques. A few examples include:
- Box breaths
- Alternate nostril breathing
- Ocean sound breath
Perform a body scan
A body scan is a similar form of meditation, but instead encourages you to focus on your whole self. Settle into a comfortable position, then pay attention to the feelings in your toes. Note how they are—tense, or at ease? What are they touching?—and move onto your calves. Complete this process with every segment of your body. This shifts your thoughts away from your thoughts and instead roots you in the present moment.
Support your wellness with Home Care Powered by AUAF
No matter all you do to tend to your needs, there may be times when all the responsibilities of caregiving are overwhelming. Handling the care for your elderly loved one doesn’t have to be done all on your own. An at-home caregiver from Home Care Powered by AUAF can take over some of your care responsibilities so you can tend to your own needs.
For more information on our services, or to learn how to become a caregiver for a family member, give us a call at 773-274-9262.
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