This is part of our Faith In Caregiving Series
A caregiver daily journal entry is being shared with you by, Veronica Badowski.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
If we take Paul’s advice, what benefits will we enjoy?
One day I felt trapped, tired, and overwhelmed by the job of caring for my elderly parents. After visiting George, my stepfather, in the hospital, I had to go home and take care of my mother who had dementia. I was thinking, I don’t want to do this anymore. God spoke to my heart, saying stop thinking about it. I listened, switched my thoughts to something more pleasant and immediately felt better.
Close your eyes and image yourself someplace beautiful on God’s earth. Open up your bible, and read your favorite book. Talk to your most optimistic friend. Peruse a cookbook for recipes, and plan a dinner for a few friends. These are just a few suggestions of ways you can shift your thoughts to something more pleasant. You’ll discover your blue mood vanishes, and you’ll feel happier.
Write about something you look forward to each day.
Learn the Benefits of Journaling
Lord Jesus, please remind me to keep my thoughts light and right as I work as a home caregiver. Thank you for Your love and the many blessings You provide each day. Amen.
Books By Veronica Badowski are:
Discover Yourself Again: The Power of Journaling for Caregivers
Caring for a loved one can often lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation. However, journaling can be a life-changing practice for family caregivers. It offers a safe space to express emotions, provides a non-judgmental listener, and helps make sense of complex feelings.
By putting your thoughts on paper, you create a companion who never interrupts or judges. Just ask Sarah, who found solace in her journal during the six years she cared for her mother. She described it as having a best friend who never talked back.
Journaling doesn't just offer emotional support; it also has practical benefits. It helps caregivers avoid the negative consequences of burying their emotions and gain a better understanding of their reactions. Moreover, it provides an opportunity for personal growth and creativity. Through writing prompts, you can tap into your creative side and let your thoughts flow freely.
Consistency in journaling is important, even if you feel pressed for time. Setting aside a few minutes each day to write can help you remain consistent. And remember, the unpredictability of caregiving shouldn't discourage you. As Goodwin suggests, "It's always morning somewhere."
Journaling requires a commitment, but the rewards are worth it. It's a therapeutic practice that allows you to access your own thoughts and emotions. Just like online forums, where people find solace in sharing their stories, journaling is a way to enlighten yourself. It's an investment in your own well-being.
Give journaling a try and see how it grows on you. If you don't find it valuable, there's no harm in quitting. At least you can credit yourself for trying something new to better yourself.
Two Journals for Two Essential Roles: A Caregiver's Guide to Organization and Venting
As family caregivers, we constantly juggle multiple responsibilities. Keeping all that information organized can be overwhelming. That's why we suggest using two separate journals for two specific purposes: an organization journal and a venting journal.
The organization journal is a practical tool for compiling all the important details related to your loved one's health and wellness. It includes any concerning symptoms, changes in their condition, prescriptions and possible side effects, questions for the doctor, and contact information for healthcare providers. Take this journal to doctor's appointments for easy reference.
Taking care of your mental health is equally important. That's where the venting journal comes in. It's a personal space for you to release your feelings and find emotional release. Studies have shown that documenting experiences reduces the risk of depression. Use this journal to pour out your thoughts without any self-judgment or concern for grammar. Feel free to include drawings or doodles.
Journaling is more than just writing notes; it's a way to take control of your caregiving journey while also prioritizing your own well-being.
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