Hope for Living, Loving, and Caring with No Regrets! A Season of Caring Podcast is a place to find hope for your caring season. I want you to know that I see you and I know what you are doing is not only difficult, and often overwhelming but it's also important and one of the most rewarding things you can do. I feature both everyday family members who are caregiver survivors and those who are still in the middle of their caring season. I also bring you professionals who bring their experience and compassion for you and your parent to our conversations. My goal is for you to walk away from our time together feeling encouraged and hopeful that you can spend this season living, loving, and caring with no regrets!
Overcoming Compassion Fatigue
Rayna Neises, your host, speaks with Dr. Edward M. Smink, Ph.D. Dr. Ed is a speaker, coach, and author of The Soul of Caregiving: A Caregiver’s Guide to Healing and Transformation. He holds multiple degrees including two M.A.s and a Ph. D in Psychology. In addition, Dr. Ed holds a title as a Board Certified Chaplain and an Associate Coach. He attributes his skills to his experience at the bedside as well as to overcoming severe compassion fatigue and burnout. Dr. Ed offers hope now to caregivers suffering from similar issues. He provides the following insights:
(3:34) Often times caregivers feel guilty when they ask for help.(6:33) Compassion Fatigue is not a mental illness, but instead something we all experience when we care to the point of exhaustion.(10:23) Three cultural taboos that prevent caregivers from seeking help:(10:26) If you just keep trying harder, you can get it done.(11:23) Don’t talk to anyone about your experiences.(12:35) Don’t show emotion.(16:40) Compassion Resilience means you are able to absorb a situation and not have it take you off-balance.(20:18) It is important to be able to find the boundary to take on what you need to, but allow the rest to come off.(22:38) Self-care is the ability to reflect and take care of yourself.(25:04) Contact Dr. Ed at his website soulofcaregiving.com and order his book there or on Amazon.(25:33) When you find yourself overwhelmed, do the easiest thing.(27:11) This episode is brought to you by the Encouragement Series: Hope Over Regrets. This free faith-based series will be coming in November. If you would like to receive updates, visit EncouragementSeries.com.
More Caregiver Tools: Routines and Faith
Rayna Neises, ACC, host, reflects on her interview last week with Deb Kelsey-Davis (Episode 125). Deb shared how technology impacted her caregiving season and helped her with self-care. Rayna continues the conversation with tips on how creating routines can be a helpful tool for caregivers. In addition, she explores how faith can impact caregiving:
[1:00] The key to self-care is that it is not a one-time event but instead an ongoing routine or habit.[2:25] When we make time for things we love and schedule in fun, we have a happier life overall. [4:13] Think about the routines you have in place and then add to them.[6:00] Using a habit tracker can help you add healthy habits into your life and it will help with consistency.[7:25] Give yourself grace as you can always start again tomorrow.[9:00] Nourish for Caregivers (www.nourishforcaregivers.com) provides an
effective faith-based program to minister to the practical, emotional, and spiritual needs of caregivers.[10:20] Caregivers are invited to attend the weekly support group, House Calls, every Tuesday at 10:00 AM CST via Zoom. Join at: House Calls Registration.[13:13] Spirituality can provide relief from the endless routines of caregiving and also life-changing crises.[14:16] Make sure that you continue to include the faith journey in your caregiving.[17:21] Consider the person you are caring for and their spiritual growth.[19:00] This episode is brought to you by the Encouragement Series: Hope Over Regrets. Visit www.EncouragementSeries.com for more details.
Technology to Help Family Caregivers
This week, Rayna Neises, your host, speaks with Deb Kelsey-Davis. Deb is the Co-Founder of Sagacity.care, Co-Founder of Nourish for Caregivers, a clinician, speaker, and bestselling author. Her passion is supporting caregivers with practical, emotional, and spiritual resources necessary to maintain their financial, mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. She draws on her experience of over 40 years in healthcare and her personal experience caring for her aging parents. She provides the following support:
(3:06) Remote caregiving is not lesser of a job and it can be done.(7:23) ) Sagacity.care is an app that can help caregivers organize and store important pieces of information.(9:33) Technology can help fill in the gaps.(13:08) Step one is to identify and create your Care Circle.(13:35) The second is to get organized.(14:00) Then, connect with others in the group.(14:19) The last piece is to share.(17:23) One self-care habit that helps Deb the most is starting the day with a cup of coffee, her Bible app, and prayer.(18:48) This episode was brought to you by the 5-Day Self-Care Challenge. This really simple 5-Day Challenge will help you consider your self-care (Sept. 19-24) Sign up at aseasonofcaring.com/selfcarechallenge
Benefits of Pity Parties and Understanding the Dying Process
Rayna Neises, ACC, host, reflects on her interview last week with Betsy Wurzel Sloan who was a caregiver for her husband who had Early Onset Alzheimer’s. Betsy shared her experiences with her caregiving journey and explained that she gave herself permission to have Pity Parties. She also talked about the dying process. Rayna shares more on both important subjects:
[1:30] Pity Parties are helpful and provide the opportunity to vent your feelings.[2:18] Self-Pity can lead to Self-Compassion.[3:40] There are many euphemisms for death and dying.[6:34] When you hear some of the key phrases, ask for an explanation and more questions.[7:15] The process of dying happens over an extended period.[11:25] One to three months before death, there are both emotional and physical changes. [12:37] One to two weeks before, things move faster.[13:37] Hospice can offer comfort through the dying process with medications for air hunger, pain, and anxiety.[15:42] Many physical changes happen in the final weeks of life.[17:20] Join the simple 5-Day Challenge to help you consider your self-care (September 19th – 24th). Sign up at www.aseasonofcaring.com/selfcarechallenge
Caregiver Tips: Self-Care is not an Option and ‘Pity Parties’ are Okay!
This week, Rayna Neises, your host, speaks with Betsy Wurzel Sloan. Betsy is a retired nurse and teacher’s aide who now has her own talk show. She is the caregiver for her special needs adult son, and she has helped her mother-in-law, father, and husband as they experienced Alzheimer’s. Through the journey with her husband, Betsy feels that she found her gifts, power, and voice. She now works to raise awareness of Early Onset Alzheimer’s with her mission to help no one walk the journey alone during caregiving or after. Betsy provides the following insights:
(5:00) Live your life and enjoy it while taking your loved one out as much as possible.(5:41) It can be easy to sit in a heap and feel sorry for yourself, but that is not going to do you or anyone else any good.(7:11) With Alzheimer’s, know that today is the best day you have, so go ahead and take advantage of that.(9:26) Self-care is not an option.(12:59) We need to validate and acknowledge our feelings and have a ‘pity party.’(14:19) Remember that it does not matter what other people think.(16:55) Knowledge is power.(18:25) You know your loved one so go with your gut instinct.(21:19) We all need to learn about the dying process.(25:13) Find Betsy’s show, ‘Chatting with Betsy’ on Spotify, Streaker, Apple, Pod Chasers, and join her Facebook group #KickAlzheimersAssMovement | Facebook(26:07) This episode was brought to you by ‘No Regrets: Hope for Your Caregiving Season.’ Check out the special bundle, including a signed copy of the book, available for purchase at No Regrets: Hope for Your Caregiving Season - Rayna Neises: A Season of Caring.
The Caregiver Toolbox- Two Stress Management Tools
Rayna Neises, ACC, host, shares two important tools to help caregivers manage the stress that can be experienced while caring for a loved one. She shares examples and insight on reframing and “Both/And” Thinking:
[2:21] When we frame our experience with good in mind, it is easier to see the good[4:26] Reframing helps you to see all of the picture, not just one little part.[5:15] Take a deep breath and notice if ‘your camera is zoomed in’ or your perspective is distorted.[5:39] Reframing will help you strengthen your mental resolve.[6:36] “Both/And” Thinking vs. “Either/Or” Thinking[7:50] Unlike compromise which requires giving up something to agree, “Both/And” Thinking let’s both exist together.[9:37] Read more at: “Both/And” Thinking, Say What? – Undaunted [10:34] “Both/And” Thinking creates breathing room and helps you to appreciate what you have lost and to appreciate what you have now.This episode has been brought to you by No Regrets: Hope for Your Caregiving Season. Purchase your signed copy and special bundle by visiting www.NoRegrets-book.com. Once you have read it, please consider leaving a review at any major retailer or Goodreads.
A Valuable & Much Needed Podcast
Rayna, Thank you for having me as a guest on your show! I enjoyed talking with you! I appreciate you helping to spread the word about the work that I do to support others with cancer. Your podcast is serving a great need by providing a lot of valuable information! You are a engaging host with a heart of gold!
A caregiver’s essential resource!
If you are a caregiver, you will quickly discover that this podcast is a must. It’s a lifeline for every situation from setting your own boundaries, to understanding how Alzheimer’s presents, to practical tips on the daily challenges caregivers face.
Rayna offers a voice of compassion, experience, and expertise. Her guests are uniquely qualified to speak into various areas of eldercare. It all comes together to help us caregivers feel less isolated and more equipped. Highly recommend!
A MUST Listen!
Rayna hits the podcast trifecta…she’s a phenomenal host, brings in incredible guests, and covers great topics that are relevant to her listeners. I’d highly recommend!