Check Your Pride at the Door

man with help signWe all want to think that we can keep our house in order (both literally and figuratively) while juggling the demands of work, marriage, and children and for over 65 million Americans caring for an elderly loved one. Any of these things individually can lead to stress, combined they can contribute to internal and external chaos and disorder.

Recently a friend of mine was struggling with this very issue. She despairingly shared how overwhelmed she was and how the internal chaos had manifested into physical disorder in her home. She shared how embarrassed she was to even share this with me and when I offered to assist her in getting organized out-right refused stating, “No it’s ok, and I’m going to get it organized this weekend”. Knowing two things 1) my friend was overwhelmed and 2) when you are living into your internal chaos even the smallest tasks can become overwhelming.

I insisted I should help as being outside of the chaos I could help her manage and organize things in a much simpler way. I know from personal experience that when I am experiencing internal chaos and even the smallest things can overwhelm me I have very little ability to actually manage my situation without some time of intervention.
Finally after several days of circular conversations, I got her past her “shame” of me seeing just how messy her home had become and allowed me to help.

Here are some tips that might help.

  • Ask for help! This is the hardest part, but I can assure you that there are people in your life who are willing to help and would show up for you (without judgement) and get to work.
  • Create a plan of attack – create different tasks and work them one at a time until that task is finished, then proceed to the next.
  • Allow others to implement the tasks – hand over the reins to someone else to take charge of certain tasks, even allowing them to manage the task list and assign/supervise tasks as they are not personally connected to the situation.
  • Create a maintenance plan to assist in keeping order in your surroundings – finding ways to keep the disorder to a minimum will be helpful in the long run.

The reality is that disorder can happen to the best of us. It is easy for the chaos of life to become overwhelming . The key is leaving your pride at the door and asking for help.

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About Sue Salach

Sue has a Master's degree in Gerontology and has worked with the elderly and their families for over 30 years and is the Author of "Along Comes Grandpa", a caregiving resource guide, and the novel "If I Walked in Her Shoes". As an ElderCare Expert and Keynote Speaker, Sue employs her comprehensive experience and passion, to educate and promote self-care values to family caregivers and the community at large.
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