How do you keep your bucket full?!

I posted Friday to look for a post on Monday about taking care of the care giver….

I went to write it about 10 times yesterday and I just couldn’t. I couldn’t think of anything to say. Mostly it was because I was completely exhausted and burned out myself and it was only Monday. I felt like I had no advice to give when I was drowning myself. Know what I mean?

Like I said Monday, as women we are usually the caregivers in our families for our children, parents, siblings and friends. Most of us don’t have the luxury of hiring help for everything that we dont’ want to do or have time to do. On TV we see stressed stars exclaim they need a break and head off for some “girl time” or a manicure and facial on a regular basis. Not in my house is that going to happen! That would require a babysitter, time and money. None of which I have much of, or am willing to spend on a manicure :) Now a 5 hour nap I would consider selling my soul for but trying to catch up after that 5 hours just isn’t worth it!

How can you keep your buckets full so that you can continue being the caregiver? 

A very wise friend of mine called yesterday, a little unexpected, but just at the right time (amazing how that happens huh?) and very matter of fact said, “YOU need to figure out how to keep YOUR bucket full.” It was great advice and I was happy I answered the phone… because if you have called me in the past 3 years you might have noticed I don’t answer the phone anymore. One way I have tried to deal with stress.

Here are some comments from the Friday post:

From Lindsay C – Only tip I have is to breathe. (not a very good tip) I guess I just try to come up with the conclusion that THIS is how it’s going to be. So I might as well try to live with it the best I can. I also try to realize that their are others far off worse than myself. I only have my husband and our 2 toddlers to take care of. So it’s not like I’m a caregiver of 7 KIDS :)
I quit smoking last July, got bronchitis which turned to pnuemonia, so it’s been harder to release my stress.

From Allyson – I care for my husband, who has several serious conditions. I do best when we can spend time together doing things that have nothing to do with his health. It creates a balance when I can interact with him as a person and not think about the illness.

From Janelle55 Ways to take care of yourself

First, Lindsay, I was more stressed and a mess when I had 2 kids. It doesn’t matter how many kids you have, your life, fatigue, stress etc. is just as real as if you had 10 kids. Having 7 kids is much easier than having 2 I promise! Allyson, I can’t imagine having to care for a spouse, how difficult that must be. That last sentence you wrote is beautiful.

I am also one to just breath. When things get hard, I am most likely to put my head down and press on. But at some point you will hit a wall if you are not looking where you are going and slow down. It might be years down the road but you will.

What are some frugal ways you can recharge your batteries?

  • Join a gym (use the 30 day free trials most offer)
  • Take a walk (* I do this a LOT when I have a new baby)
  • Make cookies ( My hips suggested this one, apparently it works)
  • Read a magazine ( I have done this with screaming and complaining children hanging on me, I just ignored them for 20 minutes and felt better)
  • Take a shower
  • Call a friend
  • Get out of the house (go ANYWHERE!)
  • Take a drive
  • Make a list of your blessings
  • Read your scriputers
  • Sign up for a class
  • Hire someone to help clean your home
  • Learn to say “no” to things that take up time that cause more stress
  • Keep a journal or start a blog so you can write

If we can’t keep our “buckets full” we can’t take care of those who are counting on us. I would love to hear what YOU do and would love some advice as well!


  1. margaret says

    Pray for joy–the joy of having three little blessings, the joy of having a husband (even if he is not around much), the joy of having a Faithful God no matter what else!

    I also actively try to never dwell on how life was like before all of my little blessings (3 age 4 and under). It only causes discontentment or longing for something that I can’t have and don’t really want either. (this is particularly hard since we were married for 8 years before our first).

  2. carrie says

    I go for a drive with my the music up loud! I know i’m too old for that lol BUT it sure does help take my mind off the bad things in life,stress!! The past few years have been extremely challenging for our family!

  3. Debbie says

    I have 3 children, one of whom has pretty severe special needs, so life gets very busy and overwhelming. For the past 6 years, I have been running 3 days a week with 3 other friends. We call it talk therapy. It’s often the only time of day I do something just for me, even if I can only fit it in at 5 AM. I’m so much healthier and happier when I run, and having an hour of uninterrupted talk time with friends is wonderful. Talking with friends the whole time is even better than listening to headphones while exercising.

  4. says

    God bless you for all you do. Your website has helped our family stay above water or shall I say the poverty line.

    All I can say is that my goal this year is to buy only things of color. No more blacks or drab tans. I’m going for joyful bright colors because life is hard. It’s helpful to know I’m not in this challenging boat of life alone. Hang in there, this too shall pass. Seek God.

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