Having Patience Takes Practice for Family Caregivers


Having patience can be a challenge for family caregivers.

Does your blood pressure soar when you finally finish filling your cart with groceries, only to find just one checkout lane open and a line of annoyed shoppers ahead of you? Or when you arrive five minutes early for a doctor’s appointment, only to wait 45 minutes to be seen? Having patience is a skill that many people seem to come by naturally, no matter what the circumstances. Wouldn’t you love to know their secret, specifically when it comes to finding extra patience when caring for a loved one?

Thankfully, it is possible to increase your level of patience in much the same manner in which you increase your endurance in exercising – through practice. Try the following tips to bolster your caregiving patience muscles:

How Can I Practice Having Patience as a Caregiver?
  • Make a conscious effort to truly listen when others are speaking. It’s very easy to begin formulating your response before the person has finished talking, but make an effort to place all of your concentration instead on everything they are saying.
  • Accept your current situation. Perhaps the person you are caring for is taking considerably longer to get dressed than you would like. Remind yourself that your job is not only to provide care, but to also allow the person to remain as autonomous as possible, and often, that will require allowing some additional time and a good measure of patience.
  • Intentionally put yourself in circumstances that require patience. Let someone go ahead of you next time you are standing in line. Make yourself wait a few moments (or more!) before checking your phone. Strike up a conversation with somebody who tests your patience.
  • Try to channel your inner child. Let yourself be silly, laugh more, and remind yourself not to permit the little things that aggravate you to become big things. A little lightening up and letting go can go a considerable way toward reducing stress.
  • Resist the urge to quickly fix or problem-solve. Allow something that is broken to remain broken for some time rather than pressuring yourself to immediately take care of it.
  • Take some time to simply focus on your breathing and to be in the moment. As soon as your thoughts start to wander, recognize the distraction, but gently guide your thinking back to your breathing.

When time is of the essence, however, having patience becomes much more challenging. Let a caregiver from CareWorks Health Services help. We are available to provide a complete range of in-home care services that will help you free up the time you need. Call us at (949) 859-4700 to find out more about our Huntington Beach senior care and to ask about a complimentary in-home consultation. For a full list of all of the communities where we provide care, please visit our Service Area page.