Firefighters approach to Caregiving

While watching one of my favorite shows, NCIS, the medical examiner, Ducky, uses firefighters_01the analogy of a firefighter when discussing the approach to finding a kidnapped girl with Special Agent Gibbs.  “Firefighters never run into a burning building, they walk lest their haste create errors.

The minute I heard this I applied it to family caregiving. You see, as a caregiver you are the firefighters and the person you are caring for is the burning building.

Because of the feeling of chaos associated with meeting the needs of an elderly loved one, running seems to be the only way to keep up with work, family and caregiving responsibilities.  If we don’t run we can’t get it all done.  Just like firefighters being called to a fire, there are times when a critical situation arises and decisions must be made in a short period of time.  In reality, this sense of continuous crisis is just our perception of the situation and not the reality of the challenges we face.

Tips to help you walk:

  • Before Sounding the Alarm – Breathe!  When faced with what seems to be a burning building, stop yourself and inhale.
  • Call for backup – ask friends for their opinion about the situation.  An outside perspective can help to clarify next steps.
  • Watch out for the back draft – when multiple people are involved in caregiving decisions there is usually one person who can take a bonfire and turn it into a 5-alarm fire just by walking into the room.  Stay calm, rational and focus on the facts of the situation not their emotional response to it.
  • Pro-Actively find the nearest Fire-Escape – when you find your stress-o-meter  hitting the boiling point, remove yourself from the situation and re-group.
  • Document all of the choices – Writing things down can also help to clarify available options.

Walking through the situation can shed light on available options, therefore creating more contemplative decisions.

For more resources visit AlongComesGrandpa.com

Advertisements

About Sue Salach

Sue has a Master's degree in Gerontology and has worked in the geriatric healthcare field for over 25 years and is the Author of "Along Comes Grandpa", a caregiving resource guide, and the novel "If I Walked in Her Shoes" (http://www.AlongComesGrandpa.com). As a Keynote Speaker and Corporate Trainer, Sue employs her comprehensive experience and enthusiasm to assist corporations in finding solutions to work/life balance challenges and pro-actively educate and empower their employees.
This entry was posted in boomers, caregiving, eldercare, work/life/flex, working caregiver and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Firefighters approach to Caregiving

  1. Jerrell Piurkowski says:

    I simply want to say I am newbie to blogging and truly enjoyed this web page. More than likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You actually have wonderful well written articles. Thank you for revealing your website.

    Like

  2. Epson Tusze says:

    I must show some appreciation to you just for bailing me out of this setting. As a result of researching throughout the world-wide-web and getting methods which are not powerful, I thought my life was over. Existing without the answers to the problems you have fixed all through your good website is a serious case, as well as ones which might have negatively affected my entire career if I had not noticed your blog. Your main ability and kindness in taking care of all the details was priceless. I don’t know what I would’ve done if I hadn’t come across such a stuff like this. It’s possible to at this point look ahead to my future. Thanks a lot so much for your high quality and result oriented help. I will not be reluctant to recommend your web page to anybody who needs and wants assistance about this situation.

    Like

  3. Canon Tonery says:

    hello!,I love your writing so a lot! percentage we keep up a correspondence extra about your article on AOL? I need a specialist on this space to solve my problem. May be that is you! Having a look ahead to see you.

    Like

  4. Tonery i tusze says:

    Thanks a lot for sharing this with all of us you really know what you’re talking about! Bookmarked. Please also visit my website =). We could have a link exchange arrangement between us!

    Like

  5. Tusze Epson says:

    I want to express some thanks to this writer just for rescuing me from this type of difficulty. Right after surfing throughout the online world and finding methods which were not productive, I thought my life was well over. Existing minus the approaches to the difficulties you have fixed as a result of your good guideline is a serious case, and the ones that could have badly damaged my entire career if I had not discovered your web site. Your actual mastery and kindness in controlling all things was very useful. I am not sure what I would’ve done if I had not come upon such a point like this. It’s possible to at this moment relish my future. Thanks a lot so much for your expert and result oriented help. I will not think twice to endorse your web sites to anyone who needs to have counselling on this topic.

    Like

  6. Lexmark Tusze says:

    I am so happy to read this. This is the kind of manual that needs to be given and not the random misinformation that’s at the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this best doc.

    Like

  7. how to treat anxiety says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on stress and anxiety.
    Regards

    Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s