Welcome to Hope for the Caregiver. This is Peter Rosenberger. This is the program for you as a family caregiver.
We're so glad that you are with us. More than 65 million Americans care for a vulnerable loved one with some type of chronic impairment. Maybe it's age-related. Maybe it's disease or trauma. Maybe it's a special needs care. Maybe it's alcohol or addiction.
Maybe it's mental illness. Whatever the impairment, there's always a caregiver. And if that is your journey, you're in the right place. And we're happy to have you along with us. Hopeforthecaregiver.com.
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It's just whatever's on your mind as a caregiver, I want to have a way for you to be able to vent that out and share it because isolation is one of the most crippling things that we deal with as caregivers. This is why we do the program. Grateful to have you along with us. Thanks to AFR for hosting this program, American Family Radio, and the Truth Network and His Radio for picking it up and all our other affiliates across the country. Also, by the way, when you go to our website, there's the podcast. And it's a free podcast. Please subscribe to it, share it with others.
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Hey, I want to share something with you in our opening block here. As caregivers, we regularly feel intense pressure to fix or achieve. Do you feel that way? Do you look at your loved ones' circumstances or other circumstances and just always feel like it's up to you to kind of fix this or achieve it? Yet, despite our best efforts, many of the circumstances we face seem unyielding.
It just doesn't change. Our self-judgment over these things beyond our control often leads us, though, to a incorrect verdict, a failure. We keep thinking that it's all up to us. We get it wrong or it doesn't work.
It doesn't change. And then we assume that we're failures. Does that sound familiar at all to you as a caregiver? Well, I tell you what, let's take a step away from the caregiving world. All right, let's talk about the slap heard around the world with the 2022 Academy Awards. I know this has been talked about to death when Will Smith got up on stage and assaulted Chris Rock in front of, wow, global audience. All right, we've talked about that part ad nauseum. Everybody's talked about that. But let me talk about something, a principle here that we saw modeled that affects us as caregivers. I think that has a teachable moment for us as caregivers. Chris Rock responded with extraordinary restraint.
Did you notice that? He didn't strike back. It didn't fall apart. He was stunned, regained his composure, and went on with the show. And, you know, because he did that, he walked away with nearly universal approval because he didn't worsen an already awful situation. And not only did he handle himself well on stage, but, you know, there's been a media frenzy afterwards and there will be for some time, I'm sure. But he's remained quiet about the event. He's hardly said anything about it.
He had a couple of shows that he did. He said, I'll talk about when I'm ready. He's chosen to address this incident on his own timing when the temperatures are cool and when he's in control of the message. Now, what can we learn from that as caregivers? Well, we regularly face situations that often tempt or provoke us to intense emotional reactions.
You ever felt that way? I mean that you're ready to absolutely lose your cookies over this thing. I don't know if that's a technical term, but, you know, taking a page from Chris Rock, we can incorporate a simple strategy into an often uncontrollable experience. And here it is.
You ready? You can write this down if you want to. If you don't make it worse, it counts as a win. I'm gonna say that one more time. If you don't make it worse, that counts as a win.
Put that one in the win column. You didn't make it worse. Now, why is that important to us? Because we as caregivers regularly come up against things that are beyond our control, things that are often spiraling out of control as a result of our control, as a result of someone else's behavior or choices. What happened to Chris Rock, for example, there's no way he could have anticipated this.
It's unprecedented. And when Will Smith did what he did, it was like, wow, this came out of nowhere. Well, show me a caregiver that doesn't understand that, something that just comes out of nowhere. When you have people with particularly cognitive impairments, things are going to come at you from all kinds of places.
It could be an altercation like what you saw with Chris Rock and Will Smith. It could be a financial thing that hits you. It could be a medical thing that erupts. The list of things that we face as caregivers is a rather lengthy one. And we're not powerful enough to fix all these things. We're not astute enough to be able to delve into all these things and take control of it and make it better. But we have the power to make it worse.
By overreacting, by losing our temper, by making it all about us, we end up distracting from the root issue or the real issue. If we could just stand back and, again, look at what Chris Rock did. The real issue was not Chris Rock. The real issue was Will Smith. But if Chris Rock had acted out and responded in kind, then it would have been his reputation that is sullied as well.
He walked away from that thing with a lot of admiration and a lot of applause because he handled himself well in a really impossible situation. And we understand that as caregivers, we find ourselves in impossible situations regularly. And so are we handling ourselves well? Do we feel calmer? Do we feel a little bit more healthier no matter what's going on around us?
Would we restrain our emotions and master our response to any given circumstance? We live a bit calmer and can add more victories to the win column. Do you need some victories in your win column today? Would you be willing to accept my premise that if you don't make it worse, that's a win?
I know it doesn't seem like it'd be much of a win. But what is the goal here? Is your goal really to fix someone else, another human being? Is your goal to alter their behavior so that it doesn't cause any more flare-ups or drama points? Do you have that kind of power?
No. The goal for us is not to fix it. The goal for us is to live more peacefully in it so that no matter what comes our way, or to be more specific to the topic we're talking about today with this example, no matter what assaults us, that we are prepared to think a little clearer and not make it worse. If you don't make it worse, that counts as a win.
Again, it doesn't necessarily feel like a win. And that's why we have to retrain our minds in this to be able to look at this in the bigger picture. Daniel Webster, you've heard of Daniel Webster, wrote a dictionary. He said, liberty, you substitute the word freedom if that helps you, liberty, freedom, exists in proportion to wholesome restraint.
Can we master our own responses? And by the way, we don't need to use examples of movie stars and comedians. There's another example of someone who was assaulted, who used enormous restraint, and that was our savior. He's our model. He's the standard. And the same spirit that gave him restraint is available to you and me. This is Peter Rosenberger. This is Hope for the Caregiver.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-18 11:37:43 / 2023-04-18 11:41:25 / 4