support programs

12 Steps To Self Care Activities

Self care activities are a must for your serenity when you’re caring for an aged parent.

As a family caregiver, the need for self care activities is essential to live a happy life.

One self care idea that comes to mind is The 12-Step Program for caregivers. Now we just need a self care plan. The care plan I put in place is keeping myself
involved with others who use this program actively in their life.

I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t want serenity in this troubled world.

The Twelve Steps and this miraculous program was developed by a bunch of drunks. It was years before people like them, who don’t drink or aren’t alcoholics can profit beyond belief by following the same self care steps.

The history of the Twelve Steps provides a sense of security and certainty is vital in many peoples lives. My hope is that as you read this post and discover the meaning and practice of the Twelve Steps, you’ll find many different viewpoints.

Each step of self care activities are equally important and will help keep you sane. This will help you create your own path on your journey to recovery no matter what it is.

We’re all recovery from something.

Some of us say we found self care thru the 12-step program.

Others say the 12-step program found them.  No matter which way it is, if you practice the Twelve Steps every day you have the blueprint for a good life. Most importantly, when you practice self care it can free you from many different things.

The Twelve Step program is not a human powered program.

God is the main source of our power and our growth. It’s a spiritual program but it’s not religious. God makes himself known to us through these Steps without religion.  As a matter of fact, it’s the best self care plan for me and it might be for you also once you study this post.

Here are the 12 original steps from AA Alcoholics Anonymous:

  1. Admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care and direction of God as we
    understood Him.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. Humbly, on our knees, asked Him to remove our shortcomings — holding nothing back.
  8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make complete amends to them all.
  9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our contact with God, praying only for
    knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of this course of action, we tried to carry
    this message to others, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

We learn thru chaos and pain and that’s where the self care comes in handy.

You can’t control the lives of your family or friends. Under your own strength you will fail. Step One we admit this understanding. Step One is about recognizing that we’re broken people. You can’t change or sometimes even recognize how broken you are by your self.

As Family Caregivers you are responsible for a loved one’s care. Over time you can become so broken that you can barely take care of your self much less your elderly parent. What I’ve learned thru the caregiving journey and also studying the Twelve Steps I want to share the knowledge, wisdom and love.

This has so freely been given to me over time from others working self care thru the 12 Step program also.

I’m grateful for being shown the way thru the doors of Al-anon around 12 years ago. I had no idea what I was getting myself into at that time because I did have an alcoholic in my life.

The main reason I entered those doors was to find help learning to cope with my aging mother. Not to mention there wasn’t many caregiver support groups and still aren’t.  Self care wasn’t even on my radar.

So it was recommended that I try the 12-step program and start taking care of my self.

One night in the meeting I was told I would learn to love the alcoholic and my mother in a new way. I thought they were downright crazy, but if it hadn’t been for my mom and the alcoholic, I would’ve never discovered the dear friends I’ve found within those rooms.

You don’t help each other just to deal with an alcoholics, you help each other with life itself. Without the encouragement of a counselor who steered me to the    al-anon meeting that night, I don’t know where I’d be today.  It’s not easy. Self Care usually is on the back burner for me.  I struggle with it.  I won’t lie to you.  But I’m working on it.

As you start on this journey of learning how to use the 12-Step Program you will learn to care for your self and your loved one, my prayer is that I can help one person and that’s you. You’re stronger than you think.

I’m writing this article for myself as much as I’m writing it for you, understand that.  I also need to be reminded daily of the chaos and craziness this world and caring for an elderly parent brings.

I’ve been a family caregiver for quite a few years caring for at least 4 family members.  For instance, to this day I’m caring for my 102-year-old mother.  Can you imagine the insanity that comes into my life? I’ve been deeply affected by friends I’ve met thru the years. The sharing of their stories comes wisdom.

We all have within us self care ideas…

The wisdom we need to make healthy and sane choices in the middle of all the challenges.

That come with the responsibilities we carry on our shoulders everyday caring for a loved one. Over the coming days my hope is to go thru each one of these
12-steps.  I’ll break them down for you. I invite you to share with others.

You’re looking for serenity and hope.  You can find peace of mind. Doesn’t mean the challenges will go away but at least you know you aren’t alone. For instance, there are many other Family Caregivers dealing with many of the very same issues you have.

You can strive to maintain your tranquility on this path you’ve taken.  Please join me next time as we delve into the First Step.

I promise you, self care will touch your life in a good way.

That is why I’ll share some of those self care ideas for caregivers that I’ve learned.  Keep your heart open.


See you then….

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Donna The Crazy Caregiver

Hi, I'm Donna!

I help people like you, an adult child, in reversing the role as a parent to your parent and learn how to live your own life even if you carry guilt around. I’ll show you how to stop that overwhelming feeling and start enjoying life with your elderly parent in their twilight years, as they say.

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