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0300 111 9000

Mon, Wed & Fri 9am-5pm, Tues & Thurs 8am-8pm

Being an unpaid Carer is a crucial but often demanding role, and taking care of your own wellbeing becomes even more important at the start of a new year. Here are some ideas to prioritise your wellbeing in 2024:

Rest and Recharge:

  • Schedule breaks: Even small, 10-minute breaks throughout the day can make a big difference. Use these to step away, de-stress, or do something you enjoy.
  • Prioritise sleep: Aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night. This can improve your mood, energy levels, and overall health.
  • Delegate tasks: Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family, friends, or professional care services. 
  • Say no: It’s okay to say no to additional commitments if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Prioritise your own needs and well-being first.

Connect and Share:

  • Call and speak to us: If you would like some support, or a listening ear from someone who is independent from the situation please contact us on 0300 111 9000 or email carers@peopleplus.co.uk
  • Talk to someone you trust: Sharing your feelings and challenges can be a huge weight off your shoulders. Talk to a friend, family member, therapist, or another Carer. Why not consider joining our Buddy Up Scheme click here to find out more.
  • Join a support group: Connecting with other Carers can be very helpful. They understand your challenges and can offer support and advice. Click here to find out where your local Carer café is.
  • Spend time with friends and family: Make time for activities you enjoy with people you care about. It can boost your mood and provide a sense of connection.

Nourish Body and Mind:

  • Eat a healthy diet: Eating nutritious foods gives you the energy you need to cope with demanding caregiving tasks.
  • Exercise regularly: Even moderate exercise can improve your mood, sleep, and overall health. Find activities you enjoy, like walking, swimming, or yoga. We have a number of free activities available online which you could join in with click here for more information.
  • Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness techniques like meditation or deep breathing can help you manage stress and anxiety. We run various sessions online which incorporate mindfulness click here to find out more.
  • Enjoy hobbies and activities: Make time for things you love to do, whether it’s reading, listening to music, or spending time outdoors. These activities can provide a much-needed escape from the pressures of caregiving.

Seek Support:

  • Gloucestershire Carers Hub: We are here to support you, if you need information advice or a listening ear please call us on 0300 111 9000.
  • Health professionals: Talk to your doctor or other healthcare professionals about your well-being and any concerns you have. They can offer advice and support.

Remember: Taking care of yourself is not selfish, it’s essential. By prioritising your own well-being, you’ll be better equipped to care for the people you love.

Setting goals and objectives for 2024

The concept of traditional New Year’s resolutions might not translate well for you as an unpaid Carer. The constant demands and uncertainties of supporting someone can make rigid goals feel unrealistic or overwhelming.

Here’s how we can reframe the idea of “no resolutions” in a way that’s empowering and supportive for you:

Shift focus from resolutions to intentions: Instead of concrete “to-do”s, think of guiding principles you wish to cultivate in the new year. These could be “compassion towards myself,” “finding moments of joy,” or “seeking support when needed.” These intentions provide direction without the pressure of specific targets.

Embrace small, achievable actions: Break down larger goals into bite-sized steps that fit within your caring routine. A 10-minute walk, a mindfulness practice during the person’s nap, or connecting with another Carer online can be meaningful steps towards your well-being without feeling like monumental tasks.

Prioritise self-care, not resolutions: Instead of aiming for self-improvement through resolutions, focus on nurturing your well-being in whatever way feels restorative. Taking a relaxing bath, reading a few pages of a book, or simply allowing yourself quiet time can be powerful acts of self-care that replenish your energy for your caring role.

Celebrate even the smallest victories: Acknowledge and celebrate even the tiniest wins, like getting through a challenging day, finding a moment of laughter with the person you support, or simply connecting with another Carer who understands your struggle. Recognising progress, however small, boosts your confidence and keeps you motivated. You may want to write down your small victories so you can reflect upon them when you may be having a less positive day.

Be kind to yourself: Remember, there’s no pressure to perform, achieve, or change dramatically. Being an unpaid Carer is demanding, and prioritising your own well-being is not selfish, it’s essential. Give yourself permission to rest, say no, and simply exist without the burden of resolutions.

Remember, your journey as an unpaid Carer is unique, and your approach to the new year should be too. There’s no one-size-fits-all formula. Listen to your needs, embrace flexibility, and prioritise self-compassion throughout your journey.

And if you ever feel the need for more specific goals, you can always set them at any point in the year. The key is to create a path that feels authentic and sustainable for you and your caring role.

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