Does a long line of annoyed shoppers make your blood boil while waiting to a check out at a grocery store? Or when you arrive five minutes early for a doctor’s appointment, only to need to wait 45 minutes to be seen? Many people just appear to project an innate sense of patience, whatever the circumstances. Wouldn’t you love to know their secret, particularly when it comes to caregiving patience?
Thankfully, it’s possible to improve your patience in the same way you build your endurance in exercising – through practice. Try these strategies to bolster your caregiving patience muscles:
How Can I Become More Patient?
- Be at peace with your current circumstances. Maybe the aging adult you are caring for is taking much longer to get dressed than you’d like. Remind yourself that your job is to provide care but to also enable the individual to stay as autonomous as possible, and often that may necessitate allowing some extra time and a good measure of patience.
- Pause for a moment to focus on your breathing and to be in the moment. As soon as your thoughts begin to wander, acknowledge the distraction, but gently guide your thinking back to your breathing.
- Try to focus on really listening when others are speaking. It’s very easy to begin formulating your response before the person has finished talking, but strive to place all of your focus instead on everything they are saying.
- Resist the urge to automatically fix or problem-solve. Allow something that is broken to remain broken for some time as opposed to pressuring yourself to immediately deal with it.
- Purposely put yourself in situations that call for patience. Let someone go ahead of you next time you’re standing in line. Make yourself wait a few moments (or more!) prior to checking your phone. Strike up a conversation with somebody who tests your patience.
- Try to channel your inner child. Let yourself laugh more, be silly, and remind yourself not to permit the small things that irritate you to become big things. A little lightening up and letting go can go a long way towards reducing stress.
When time is of the essence, however, it becomes all the harder to practice caregiving patience. Let a caregiver from JFS Care, the trusted provider of in-home care services in Santa Monica and the nearby areas help. We can provide a complete range of services that will help you free up the time you need. Call us at 213-383-2273 for additional information and to request a complimentary in-home consultation.