Breathe Believe Receive
By Leeza Gibbons
This is for all those courageous caregivers out there. The ones who take care of a loved one around the clock and are probably not taking care of themselves. You already know your life has changed, but have YOU? It’s time to let go of that carefully constructed (and false) image of yourself as being a rock…when you unclench your fist, you can let in the energy you need to see you through. It’s time to BREATHE BELIEVE RECEIVE and learn to take your oxygen first.
Basically, it’s all about change. It’s inevitable. Change either breaks into your life or you open the door and invite it in to sit down and have a cup of tea. It’s coming. You can either react or respond. Your ability to manage change is what will make a difference. In a game of sameness vs. change – change always wins; it cancels out the stagnant, the static and the complacent. When you are a caregivers it’s time to become a master of change. We all know CPR can change a life and I think BBR can too! I found my transformation into the world of caregiving was made easier when I remembered BBR – Breathe, Believe and Receive.
Take 10 purposeful breaths, breathing in sheer certainty that you are doing your best. Breathe out all the negativity that weighs heavy in your head and on your heart. This can change your physical and emotional state – slowing down your heart rate, aiding your digestion, reducing your stress so you can cope with the very challenging journey you are walking.
You can’t take good care of others unless you take care of yourself. Caregivers sometimes need to slow down and prioritize their own needs in order to be in the best possible condition to care for their loved ones.
How come some of us get buried by the circumstances in our lives and some of us are buoyant? I think there is a way of looking at things that make a difference. Your frame, the lens through which you create your world affects everything. No matter where you go, there you are…. YOU with your approach, your temperament, your expectation. This is where those glass half full kind of people have the advantage. So this is when you want to:
Now is the time to be an optimist. Optimists really do fare better in warding off everything from the common cold to gastro intestinal problems and sleeplessness. Know that you can do it – and that your efforts will be enough. Believe that you can get empowered by others who have achieved this before you. Get strength from them and know that what you learn on your journey will also lift those who come next.
Everyone has limits, and there will be days when you feel that you just can’t do it anymore. That’s why it is so important to be surrounded by an encouraging community and explore resources around you. Sometimes you need to stop achieving and start receiving. Know that real strength comes from knowing your limits and asking for help. When someone says YES, be prepared to provide a list! It can include everything from walk the dog to bring dinner and listen to me vent – don’t be afraid to let people know what it helpful to you.
I wish you strength and support on your journey knowing you will find the courage you never knew you had and hope you can count on help to take you to the next step.