It’s that time of year again! We’ve all made our new year’s resolutions and now we’re breaking them. We bet yours were all of the usual ones just like ours were. Lose weight. Eat better. Sleep more. Spend more time with family. Read more books.
But we made some extra ones this year. We decided to dedicate our lives to helping the elderly and vulnerable receive better care, but we wanted to take this one step further in 2018 by adding some extra New Year’s Resolutions to our care work. We thought we would write some of them out for you in case you were thinking about doing the same. If you’re dumping the ones you made on new year’s eve already, why not take up some of these instead.
- Take the time to listen
We know how busy you are. You probably spend all day running from task to task trying to get everything done. This might seem an impossible task, but could you take more time to listen to the people you are caring for? You might be one of the only people they get to see and speak to all day. Could you add listening to your priority list above some of the other more menial things you need to do and spend a few minutes just sitting with the person you are caring for and talking to them? Aside from making them happy, it might actually help you at work, because they might tell you that they need or desire something that they otherwise wouldn’t have told you about.
- Ask for extra training
How long have you been sitting in the same position hoping for a role change or promotion without increasing your worth by anything other than the length of time you have been working in care. Be proactive. Ask your employers to pay for training in an area you have always been interested in, or save up the money and pay for it yourself. Not only will this continue your professional development, but it will increase the quality of the care you’re providing to individuals.
- Consider going self-employed
Are you tired of being told what hours you have to work and that you need to give a week’s notice for a dentist appointment? Do you wish you could spend more time with the people that you love? Why not think about going self-employed? CareBIG connect carers with care seekers. You’ll be able to set your own hours and control your own workload, freeing you up to pick your kids up from school or take them to their after-school clubs. Self-employment can transform your life and give you a renewed sense of value within your role. You’ll most certainly pass this happiness on through your care work.
- Read more care related books
There aren’t an awful lot of books out there about care, but there are some. Search Amazon for books about Dementia and Alzheimers. There are also some great books to help individuals talk to others about dying, such as ‘The D Word’ by Sue Brayne. You can also try ‘Confused, Angry, Anxious?’, which is about working with older people in care and how difficult this can be. Books will help you increase your knowledge around working with older people on a theoretical level, which can only enhance your practical capabilities.
- Take advantage of the free stuff you can get to increase your knowledge
Make no mistake, everyone is well aware that we have a social care crisis on our hands. There are loads of organisations out there who will give you free stuff to help you develop yourself as an individual or help your organisation become a better care provider. Skills For Care provide booklets and care cards to help social care employers and their staff. Many of them are free. They also have loads of information on their website about best care practises. Take advantage of opportunities like these, because they will definitely make you a better carer.