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Managing Anger Related to Caregiving

The stresses of providing long-term elder care in Annapolis for a loved one are real.  This stress is unavoidable and is a normal response to such tremendous responsibility. However, we often ignore stress or brush things under the rug rather than finding a proactive solution to managing these challenges, which can lead to angry and hurtful outbursts. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are ten steps caregivers can take to keep anger under control.

  1. Think before you speak

    Avoid say something in the heat of the moment that you’ll soon regret, whether it’s directly to your loved one or to a spouse, child, or even a friend.

  2. Take a time-out

    This can be a proactive response rather than a reactive one. Recognize your triggers and step away before becoming too angry and return when in a better state of mind.  

  3. Express your anger

    Once you’re calm, speak in an assertive but non-confrontational way. Be clear and direct, and avoid hurtful and controlling language.

  4. Get some exercise

    A short fifteen-minute walk can reduce the stress that might be making you angry. Consider pair physical activity with your personal time-outs.  

  5. Identify possible solutions

    Don’t focus on what made you mad. Instead, try to focus on resolving the problem that triggered your anger, and proactively identify ways to prevent a problem from appearing or escalating in the first place.  

  6. Use “I” statements

    When addressing those who contributed to your anger, “I” statements will help you avoid criticizing or assigning blame on others, preventing the person you are speaking to from becoming defensive and escalating the situation.

  7. Don’t hold a grudge

    In other words, be forgiving. Do not let anger and other negative feelings fester. They will eventually come to a boiling point and explode out in unanticipated ways and often towards neutral parties who are simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

  8. Use humor to release tension

    Sometimes you just need to lighten up, especially if you provide dementia or stroke care in Annapolis and face additional challenges caring for a loved on. Joke with your loved one, fellow caregivers, and family members in a positive way or spend a few minutes here and there watching funny videos or reading humorous blogs.

  9. Practice relaxation skills

    Imagine a relaxing scene or recall a positive memory, practice deep breathing, pray or meditate, or listen to your favorite music. Do what it takes to relax and reset your mind and spirits on a regular basis.

  10. Know when to seek help

    Sometimes the stresses are so much we cannot control our response to them. Consider asking your doctor, therapist, spiritual leader, or trusted friends for help when things are getting too much for you.    

Being the primary caregiver for a senior isn’t an easy task, and taking time for you is essential for ensuring the quality of care your loved one receives remains high. If you’re concerned about your loved one’s wellbeing while you’re not present, consider respite care in Annapolis from Home Care Assistance. Our caregivers are experienced and trained and can offer your loved one support in the comfort of his or her home while you focus on your personal needs. For more information on how our care services can benefit both you and your loved one, call 443-302-2771 and speak with a dedicated Care Manager today.