Your caregiving days can be filled with a variety of things to do. Your lists pile up, or perhaps you can’t even find them among the other papers anymore. Your days may include periods of “I just can’t do one more thing…” and I completely understand - I was there too. So I am here to encourage you to find new ways to reduce your anxiety by systemizing your life. Which does mean doing ‘one more thing.’
By keeping ideas or projects together and creating systems, you can ease the chaos and create a calmer state of being. While simultaneously helping to balance your emotions and keeping track of things to make your day-to-day living a little bit easier.
Writing things down can reduce anxiety and clear your mind at night so you can sleep. I use journals to help simplify my life, which has made a positive difference. Here are journals/notebooks that I have that you can adjust to your specific life/needs:
Business (one for each client and overall business planning strategy)
Inspiration (include ideas from articles or pictures from magazines)
Gardening/Design (I love keeping photos from magazines or ideas that I’ve thought of doing)
Travel (bucket list of places to go and things that I enjoyed from places I’ve been to)
Life (emotions to work through things or keep memories alive
Gratitude (this is a powerful tool to increase happiness in your life)
I suggest you start writing down shopping lists for groceries and important dates like meetings and birthdays. I am a big fan of an old-fashioned desk calendar to make planning more accessible, which can also include your weekly meal plans.
Binders can be your best friend for keeping track of recipes, adding new ideas, and making notes about things that did and didn’t work. Have you ever said to yourself after trying a new recipe that next time you want to add more butter in and then forget? Argh!
While we may not be able to have everything in our lives the way we want them to be, we do have the power to create systems for a more balanced life. Part of that is not forgetting to thank yourself and practice gratitude while making up your new journals.
Finding gratitude in the middle of darkness can inspire you and give you hope, and in the life of a caregiver, it is a lifeline.