Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Book Review: Coaching for Caregivers; How to Reach Out out before you Burn Out

I was sent another book to review. It's an excellent book that helps a caregiver manage her social, emotional and physical caretaking responsibilities. I quite liked it.
It is a comfortable read, not 'easy', as it requires you to become thoughtful about your caregiving habits and do some internal work. Also, this book will assist you whether you live in Canada, with universal healthcare, or in the US with convoluted insurance company plans. It will help those employed, those with money, or with limited means.

I found Yosaif August writes as if I was listening to an uncle, or a caring family member, or counsellor, who had wise words of wisdom, keeping my needs in mind, and providing words of comfort. I must admit that while I was caring for my late mother (who was having chemotherapy), while my brother was caring for my late father (who was having radiation treatments), I did not reach out. This was a huge mistake, but I was very depressed.

My late parents,
Joan & Ray
It is important for caregivers to learn how to ask for help, and reach out, as this book suggests. Sunk into a depressive state and unable to manage anything outside of my job, and my caregiving responsibilities, I could have used this guide. Living alone, next door to mom, while my brother took dad to Toronto for treatments, I was a mess. My senior relatives were no help, letting me know my faults, demanding visits, staying too long, or not visiting enough, and being less than supportive, which is another familiar theme amongst extended families.

In my situation, as with many, we aren't sure what we need, or what supports might help. This is an excellent workbook, that demands we make a plan, and think of ourselves, in order to be able reach out. There are some great charts, with spaces where we might check off some issues that may be jeopardizing our mental and physical health, as caregivers, such as boundary setting, sense of humour, toughness, perseverance, resilience. Another chart helps us plan and create a To Do list, and to become thoughtfully organized.
Dad in long-term care

I must point out that caregivers may or may not live with, or near, their care recipients. In the chat rooms, where I go to support caregivers, many are discouraged by living a distance away; Canadian Virtual Hospice, as well as Aging Care Caregiver Forum (USA), are places to go.
August outlines several resources where we can co-ordinate care, from afar, and finding solutions to the dilemmas that plague some caregivers. Caregiver stress, as many will attest, may be confounded by circumstances they may not have chosen, but this book will help you determine your strengths, weaknesses, and formulate strategies for sorting yourself out.

This book is a great resource for:
 • caregivers, especially anyone who may be at risk of burning out.
 • friends/family/lovers of caregivers.
 • professional caregivers – to support caregivers in making the best use of this valuable resource.

One of the best ideas from his book, are caresites where you can create blogs or pages to find support.

Yosaif August
is a life coach
Yosaif August is a life coach, award-winning healthcare innovator, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. His newest book is Coaching for Caregivers: How to Reach Out Before Your Burn Out.

August shares six coaching tips to help resilient caregivers, and can discuss:
-- How to transform your resistance to reaching out, and feel positive about it.
-- 13 of the smartest and dumbest things to do when reaching out.
-- How to ask for help and support without losing the family's privacy.
--Where to find the best resources for caregivers.

Click the icon for more book review blogs @Barrie Summy


Red said...

The complete care system is complicated. Both care giver and person needed care have their issues and challenges. At 74 I worry as my son is on the coast and my daughter is in Chicago. Yes, I will have to move some day.

Lucy said...

I'm not a self-help book kind of person but this sounds like a good resource to have because odds are you're likely to be a caregiver at some point in your life and life becomes overwhelming when that happens. I wish I'd had this book back when my mother was diagnosed with cancer 20 years ago.

Thanks for the review.

Ellen Booraem said...

Wow, you really had a double whammy in the caregiver department. Like you, I wish I'd had a book like this ten years ago. My partner and I were both only children of older parents a couple of whom had health issues. And I, too, wish I'd reached out more. This book sounds like a godsend--I hope it finds its way tot those who need it.

Sarah Laurence said...

What a wonderful resource for caregivers! Your parents were lucky to have devoted children. It is exhausting to care for ill loved ones, having been through several years of that myself. Sense of humor and breaks help. A kind friend took in my puppy for weeks without my having to ask. Little things add up and help.