4002 Spring Garden St, Suite A, Greensboro, NC 27407
There’s a lot of negativity in this old world. It’s hard to turn on the TV or read the news without becoming discouraged about our health, our finances, or world affairs. But our homes should be a refuge from negativity, even though it is so easy to become overwhelmed and slide into the dark side.
Negativity is contagious, but so are happy thoughts and a positive attitude. When we are caregivers, we have a huge impact on those around us. We are powerful, even though we often don’t feel that way. Keeping a good attitude and choosing to look at the good aspects of our lives, is so important to our own good health, but also to the ones we’re caring for.
When my kids were young, I slid into the dark side on a regular basis. I found myself screaming a lot in an effort to get my children to conform to my will. I often thought to myself, “These kids are out of control.” In reality, I was the one who was more to blame. One day, after yelling at my youngest son, I saw a look that seemed familiar to me. It was my son’s face filled with discouragement. Then I remembered when my own mother would raise her voice and how it made me feel. I vowed on that day to leave yelling and negativity behind. Now you know, it wasn’t quite that easy. There were many days where I nearly had to take a long walk just to keep the frustration at bay. It took time, but gradually, I did get control over my negative emotions. Our home became a much nicer place and my children began to treat each other better. As my daughter now tells her own sons, I learned to tell myself, “Use your words and don’t yell!”
Our elderly loved ones are often hurting – both physically and mentally. They can no longer do all the things they love and are trying to endure. Some older people become quite jaded and often respond with frustration. We can make it worse, or we can try to make it better. Sometimes it’s best to just walk away and give them some time to think it out on their own. Sometimes we just have to offer them a “detour” and change the subject. I know that isn’t always possible, but many times it can work. Other times, we probably should just let them have their way. Consequences have a way of converting the hardest hearts!
Here are some tips for caregivers:
We all need to remember that our own parents put up with us while we were children. They weren’t perfect disciplinarians, but they did their best. Now it’s time for us to give them our best.
So give yourself a positive attitude for just one day and see how it changes the way you feel and affects your loved one. Kindness is always the best policy. Remember, what goes around, comes around. Our own children are watching how we interact with our elders. Let’s set a good example that will bless us in the future!