TIP of the WEEK: Taking Care of the Caregiver

For the first week of PWS awareness month I would like to address the needs and challenges of professionals working with the PWS population. Personally I have never worked with a population that was more profoundly rewarding and also at times formidable and confounding; but always worth it. I have found that each time I have felt defeated or to the brink of throwing in the towel, I myself have not been at baseline. My state of peace and self awareness has had a direct impact on the situation at hand. When I was able to regroup and look objectively it was clear that my state of being had a direct effect on the outcome. It takes a special and dedicated person to work with people with PWS and on this first week of PWS awareness month I want to thank you for everything that you do everyday for our children and adults. Here are some ways to keep your approach positive and still have some energy left for you at the end of the day.

  • 1. Take a break from technology everyday. I am one of the biggest offenders of being glued to my phone and email but taking a break from the things that we plug into allows our minds and souls to recharge. Putting down the phone gives us a chance to make face to face connections instead of just screen to screen.
  • 2. When you’re at work, be at work and when you’re at home, be at home. Being in the moment is being the best of you. Practice mindfulness before and after each shift to help you make that transition.
  • 3. Take time off. Use your vacation time and be off when you are off. Try to avoid reading email or checking in when you are not working.
  • 4. Be as kind to yourself as you are to the people that you care for. Use the same level of patience and encouragement for yourself  as you do for others.
  • 5. Practice self care everyday. Eat well, get outside, do leisure activities that make you happy.

As rewarding as our jobs are they are equally as demanding and taking care of yourself is crucial to your overall success both at work and at home. Since I know that you do not hear these words enough- thank you! You are coaches, friends, surrogate parents, cheerleaders, nurses, therapists, referees, and confidants all in the matter of an 8 hour shift. If you have any doubt look at the faces of the kids when you come back after being off for a few days and you will know without question how loved you are. You are an essential part of their lives and the work that you are doing now will matter for a lifetime. So take good care of yourselves and keep up the good work!

Submitted by:
Patrice Carroll
Manager of PWS Services

Related Posts:
PWS Awareness Month 
Latham Attends National Organization for Rare Disease Gala
The Value of Specialized PWS Placement

“Gentleness towards self and others makes life a little lighter.” 
~Deborah Day

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