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4 Spring-Inspired Stress Relievers for Caregivers

This is a sponsored post for Vive Health. I have been compensated for sharing it with you. All opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company.

Don’t worry, this post isn’t an ambiguous guide to caregiver stress relief with vague tips like “Try not to stress so much.” Caregivers know that fighting stress and anxiety is key to maintaining mental and physical health – so you can stay in tip-top shape to take care of your loved one. It’s easier said than done, however. Get inspired with these 4 real-world, practical ideas that can truly get your spring off to a bright and stress-free start:

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Routines

Routines

Routine is the foundation upon which you can direct your family’s chaotic energy into a safe direction. Having an established routine allows your children to go through the necessary motions of their day without worrying about what’s next. Some of the common hurdles are inconsistent nap times and unexpected activities. Of course, these are all more pronounced when you have more than one child. Fortunately, there are tricks to handle even the most frustrating situations.

Quiet time is a great way to handle nap time, especially for your children who no longer take naps. Set aside a two-hour window and enforce quiet activities for all of your children. You get less noise, your napping child gets to rest, and your remaining children get time to do quiet activities like coloring or homework. All of your children may not agree, but everyone wins.

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Managing Your Stress, Part Two: Crisis

OK, so what do we do when we’re in a crisis situation? We need to have a plan ahead of time, because there isn’t any time for planning after the emergency begins. No one sits in the back of an ambulance, or in the ER thinking, “OK, lets make a crisis management plan!” First, we need a support person. Ideally this would be someone you trust completely and is competent enough in the basics of your child’s care to take care of them for an hour or two. At minimum, it can be a friend who would be willing to take the time to call you once a day, see how you’re doing, and remind you to eat. Ideally you would have a backup that’s probably closer to the latter than the former. It’s unlikely that your support person would become laid up at the same time your child is going through an emergency situation. Unfortunately, depending how many emergencies your child has on a regular basis it’s far from impossible.

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Managing Your Stress, Part One: Crisis vs. New Normal

This post is part of a three day series about how to handle stress when you’re bouncing back and forth between crisis and calm. I hope you find it helpful. I would love to hear about things YOU are doing to manage your stress.

There are two situations mothers of special needs children find themselves in more often than we would like to admit. The first is crisis situations. Many, although not all, of these land us in the hospital with our already struggling child. Once there, we fight fiercely to protect them from catching something even worse than what brought them in in the first place and engage in a constant power struggle with the hospital staff to let our children sleep. The second is what I call the, “new normal.” This frequently, though not always, comes after a crisis. Something has changed in our child’s condition and it’s changed the way that they and we have to live our lives. Identifying which of these two situations you’re in is key to properly handling your stress level.

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