What Happens to Your Mission-Critical Tasks?
Have you ever fallen into an unexpected state of mind where you were mad, depressed and frustrated – all at the same time? What a strange combination! There are so many things that can happen in our daily lives, over which we have no control – yet these unplanned things can negatively impact our daily life. When these things happen, we sometimes feel all of the emotions listed above – at the same time! We may be mad at life while we’re depressed that this is happening to us. At the same time, we may be frustrated that we can do little or nothing to change our current situation.
One example of this that you may be familiar with is when a parent suddenly declines in health. You are already terribly busy with your job and your family and you felt like that you literally could not do one more thing. Suddenly you get the phone call. Mom has fallen and broken a hip. OR maybe the caller says that Mom was found wandering around aimlessly in her local grocery store and doesn’t know her way home.
The Unexpected Needs
Either of these occurrences may require your immediate attention and assistance. You may have already thought your plate was completely full and that you couldn’t even fit one more thing. Now, suddenly your schedule has been totally rearranged. Your short-term focus is getting Mom back to status quo. If this is not possible, then your focus may be getting her the care that she needs. Your busy agenda has been rearranged. Your previously mission-critical daily tasks may have been shoved to the back of your agenda.
Refocus & Reprioritize
You might be able to focus 100% of your time on Mom’s health for a short period of time – but then the other stuff starts creeping back in. What do you do? How do you cope? The sheer weight of all the unexpected tasks can seem almost overwhelming.
One of the first tasks is to determine exactly what needs to be done to return your Mom to status quo. If this cannot be done in short order, then determine what type of care she needs to allow her to recover or at least maintain her life in the least restrictive environment. Is it safe for her to return home? Can local family members assist with her care? Does she need outside caregiver assistance for a short period of time? OR does she need some type of facility care?
Switching from Unexpected to Normalcy
What do you need to maintain your status quo? In the most severe cases, your previously important schedule may have been totally disrupted by the unexpected. There may be some things that you planned to do or even felt like that you needed to do that will not be done. What steps can you take to stabilize your situation? To determine this, you may need some quiet time away from the action where the only thing that you have with you is your journal and an ink pen. A short quiet time away can help you reprioritize and re-engineer your new critical task list.
Take a Moment to Reflect
It’s helpful in times like these to take a few minutes to reflect on the things you are grateful for. Simple reflection can help you reset your priorities and focus on the most important things in your life. In the hustle bustle of daily life, it’s easy to take many things for granted. At times like these when we are often forced to refocus and reprioritize. We may later realize that this forced requirement was actually a gift in disguise!
Best wishes to you as you work to reprioritize your tasks so you can be enabled to focus on the most important things in your life. If you need help planning for healthcare costs, facility payments, or estate planning, schedule your FREE 10-minute phone consultation with one of our Elder Law professionals today
You’re Not Alone!
As you seek to balance life as Family Caregiver or advocate for your Loved One, you will face many challenges. Without preparation, the unexpected can quickly become the new normal. Speaking from experience, I can say that one struggle that many caregivers face is feeling alone. Many caregivers feel isolated from everyone, including their closest friends and family members. Do not let this lie drag you down!
One of the first success steps is to join a community. We offer a newsletter filled with Caregiver support, expert advice, and special offers just for fellow Caregivers. We strongly encourage you to join Caregiver Connection today!