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Overcoming The Burdens You Experience As A Caregiver

Many of you have come to realize that you create many of the burdens you experience as a caregiver. You also are aware of the fact that each day you become stronger as you plunge deeper into the role of caregiving. Hope may rise from deep within and shatter in a matter of minutes, only to rise again. As you reflect on your past experiences in this role, you will most likely be able to review this exchange which transpires daily.

The most important issue you may all face is that of taking charge or control. You may succeed in taking charge but often fail at taking control. The truth is you cannot control anyone but yourselves. You are "powerless" in many situations that you face from day to day. You usually can come to terms with this so called feeling of powerlessness when you no longer can meet the needs of the individual you are caring for; when you no longer can live up to everyone's expectations; when you no longer receive approval from those you seek it from; when you no longer can keep on top of everything; or when you feel you are losing control or your mind. It is quite a harrowing realization and one is often left feeling frustrated, confused, angered, guilty and a myriad of other emotions to boot.

This awareness and feeling of powerless may leave you feeling as if you have failed to live up possibly even to your own expectations of yourself. It is when you reach this point that you can begin shifting from within yourself to making changes as well as accept that you are not "God". This loss of control or powerlessness may even reveal itself to you in your own life. This can show it self in terms of "trying to stop smoking," trying to diet and procrastination. Merely experiencing anything that has been mentioned may leave you with the feeling that you are about to give up and perhaps even that you can not go on any longer like this.

In many ways, you may have been denying the process that your loved one is going through. Wanting to save them and help them to live forever is a perfect example. However, when you come to the realization, that you are really powerless to control or change these situations that are outside yourself, you can then move inward and begin to take charge of making the necessary changes for yourself to free yourself up from the burdens. At this point, many of you begin to realize there is a "Higher Power" that you begin to give it all up to. In giving it over to this source, you begin to feel lighter and freer. Your heart opens more to love as well in doing so. Your attitude will shift and you will move through these experiences in a transformed fashion.

So take time to get comfortable. Begin breathing in love & light and good thoughts while you take in new found energy. On each exhale, breathe out all your worries, fears, doubts, negative feelings and thoughts. Give yourself approval to allow all parts of your physical body to relax and let go. If you feel stress in a particular area, breathe into the area. You can best accomplish this but inhaling and imaging the breath going into the part of your body that is hurting or feeling tight.With each inhalation allow yourself to breathe in only loving, positive thoughts that allow you to feel free and light. When your body has reached this state of being, allow yourself to slowly begin reflecting on all of the heavy burdens you have been carrying around with you daily. Envision your daily routines, the major events and all that comes to you. Observe those burdens that you do have control over and those you do not. From within, discern on those you can change. Allow yourself to experience this from five to fifteen minutes. When you are finished, gently guide yourself back into reality on the physical plane but rubbing the palms of your hands together and placing them over your closed eyes. Then slowly open your eyes and see how much clearer objects in the room look to you.

On a piece of paper, create three columns as shown below:

Things, People & Experiences Which Burden Me
What I Can't Change & Must Surrender
What I Can Change & How
, , ,
, , ,

With the clarity of your processing, fill in each column appropriately. Be as clear as you can. You will find that you are already feeling much freer and lighter. Notice how long your burden list is. You will probably chuckle when you surrender most of the burdens and delight in the experiences and things you can change. With a renewed focus, you will find strength to move forward, with more openess and love to overcome those burdens you cannot control, giving you strength and endurance to tackle the things, people and experiences, which you can change, and to live your life more fully and present in each moment.

Richest blessings to you on your journey.
Copyrighted by Gail R. Mitchell 06/22/00

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