Time is something that just about every family caregiver wishes to have more of in every day. There’s so much to do, always. Managing your time as efficiently as possible can help you feel as if you’ve added hours to your day.
Be Realistic about What You Can Do and the Time that You Have
It’s really easy to over commit yourself. There are all sorts of things that have to get done and if you’re the one who does them, you may see no choice. But there’s a point where reality intrudes. You have to have time to sleep. You have to have time to do things that you enjoy. You have to have time to eat. Factor those into your schedule when you’re looking at what you’re going to be doing for the day or the week.
Prioritize All of Your Tasks
Assign every task a priority. You can use an “A, B, C” priority system or you can number them in the order they need to be done. The big idea is to make sure that each task has a priority. The reason you do this is so that you can see at a glance what the next most important thing to do is. When you’re feeling overwhelmed and don’t know what to do, check the priority.
Break Bigger Tasks into Smaller Ones
“Clean the hall closet” is a big task. So is “go through Mom’s medical paperwork and file it.” So break those big tasks down into smaller ones that you can do quickly in between other tasks. Going through your loved one’s paperwork and file it might break down into collecting all of the paperwork, getting files labeled, sorting the paperwork, and then actually filing it. You wouldn’t have to do everything in one sitting and you could even start to delegate.
Delegate as Much as You Can
Delegation is something that too many family caregivers overlook completely. They worry that they have to do everything themselves and that’s where a lot of time issues come in. Break down your tasks and assign those smaller pieces to someone who can handle it for you.
Managing your time isn’t always easy, but it’s important to do it if you don’t want to find yourself wondering where the day or the week went.