Balancing Self-Care and Seeking Support: A Guide for Caregivers

It’s crucial to strike a balance between attending to your own needs and seeking help when necessary. Use this guide to help.

Balancing Self-Care and Seeking Support: A Guide for Caregivers

Taking on the role of a caregiver comes with its unique challenges, often leaving very little time for self-care. And if you’ve ever been a caregiver or even are familiar with their challenges in passing, you know how important self-care is.

It’s crucial to strike a balance between attending to your own needs and seeking help when necessary. The below guidance will provide insights into both aspects, offering practical tips for self-care and guidance on overcoming the hurdles of asking for assistance.


How do you prioritize self-care when you already feel behind otherwise?

It can be fairly easy to overlook your well-being in the midst of daily responsibilities. Here are some practical tips to prioritize self-care:

1. Check in with Yourself

Start by regularly assessing your physical, emotional, and nutritional well-being. Ask yourself questions like:
– How do I feel physically and emotionally?
– When did I last have a nutritious meal?
– How am I sleeping?
– Am I carrying stress in my muscles? Can I relax my shoulders or jaw right now?
– Can I do something simple, like set a timer, to check in with myself throughout the day?
– What’s working or not working for me right now?

By understanding your needs, you can pinpoint the type of care you require and make it a priority.

2. Set Boundaries

We all have limited time. What can you outsource, or outright remove from your schedule? Learn to say no, even to loved ones. Protecting your time and energy through clear boundaries helps prevent burnout and resentment. This may involve scheduling alone time, declining social invitations, or setting time limits on activities.

3. Engage in Activities You Love

While daily tasks are important, it’s equally vital to dedicate time to activities you love. Whether it’s spending time with friends or indulging in a hobby, these moments contribute to emotional and mental well-being.

4. Recognize Self-Care as Essential

Challenge the notion that self-care is indulgent. Understand its critical role in your overall well-being and acknowledge that taking care of yourself positively impacts your ability to care for others.

5. Seek Support

Asking for help can be a daunting task, but it’s essential for maintaining balance and preserving your mental health. Take a look at the below tips for navigating this challenge.


How do you overcome the challenge of asking for help?

1. Pushing Past Discomfort

Acknowledge the discomfort associated with asking for help and take action despite it. Visualize the positive outcomes of seeking assistance and use that motivation to move forward.

2. Deciding Who to Ask

Seek help from trusted individuals, such as family, friends, or colleagues. Establishing emotional closeness and reciprocity in helping each other can make the process smoother.

3. Making the Request

Simplify the process of asking for help with these steps:
– Be specific about what you need and why.
– Be flexible and accept variations in how tasks are done.
– Tap into others’ unique skills.
– Be prepared for the possibility of rejection.
– Express gratitude for the support received.

4. Handling Rejection

Understand that rejection is normal and often unrelated to your relationship. Adjust your request based on the reasons for rejection, maintaining a positive and forward-looking approach.

5. Expressing Appreciation

Show gratitude for the assistance you receive, whether through a simple thank-you or a thoughtful gesture. Cultivate a culture of mutual support, knowing that expressing appreciation strengthens relationships.

Achieving balance as a caregiver involves prioritizing self-care and recognizing the importance of seeking help when needed. By implementing these strategies, you can foster a healthier and more sustainable caregiving journey.


Learn more about both Cleo’s adult caregiving and self-care offerings.