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Helping Seniors Find Resiliency in a Time of Crisis

happy senior woman making heart shape with hands
Building resilience can help caregivers and seniors weather life’s storms.

Times of crisis may bring out both the best along with the worst in us. All through the coronavirus pandemic, we’ve come across stories of individuals hoarding products and selling them to make an outrageous profit, along with stories of wonderful people who selflessly met the needs of others despite their personal fears.

The secret to weathering the storms that are guaranteed to show up during our lives in a healthy and balanced way is resiliency. Mia Bartoletti, clinical psychologist for the Navy SEAL Foundation, works together with families of individuals serving in the military, and offers guidelines which can help build resilience through any time of crisis.

  1. Discuss your reactions. It is common to experience a variety of responses to a crisis: flashbacks to other overwhelming situations, dreams and nightmares, avoidance and withdrawal, issues with sleeping, irritability, issues with concentration and focus, and hypervigilance. What is important is to make sure these responses are temporary, and don’t progress into longer-term psychological problems. Acknowledge your feelings, and share them with a trusted friend, or write them in a journal.
  2. Continue to keep social connections. While your reaction may be to pull away from family and friends during a crisis, keeping in touch on a frequent basis with people you care about is very important. Finding a support group, whether in person or online, is yet another great way to ensure you’re developing and maintaining social ties, helping you to talk with other people in a similar circumstance.
  3. Take time for self-care. This means something different to every single individual, but ought to include enjoyable activities, engaging interests and hobbies, nourishing meals, lots of sleep, and exercise. If you discover it is hard to carve out self-care time for yourself as a result of caregiving duties, Relevar Home Care is always here to partner with you to provide trusted respite care. Taking care of yourself enables you to take better care of those you love.
  4. Realize what you are able to control – and that which you cannot. Letting go of what’s beyond your control and focusing instead on what you CAN control is one of the fundamentals of resilience. Psychologist Mary Alvord, who founded Resilience Across Borders, explains, “Depression is hopelessness and helplessness, and so resilience is the opposite. No, you’re not helpless; you do have control over many aspects of your life.”

It’s always a smart idea to seek professional counseling whenever your reactions to stressful conditions are impeding your ability to maintain a feeling of calm and to tend to the necessary day to day activities of living. And, watch for signs that older family members are going through undue amounts of stress so that you can obtain the help which they need also.

Realize that whatever life may bring, you can depend on Relevar Home Care to walk beside you with reliable, knowledgeable aging care services helping seniors to remain resilient and independent. Contact us at (888) 493-3513 for more information on our expert senior care in Rochester, MI and the surrounding area.