Everyone needs a good laugh now and then. If that’s you today, check out these caregiver job jokes and surrender your stress to laughter.
Two elderly ladies had been friends for many decades. They’d done many exciting things together, but in their old age they’d started playing cards every week.
One day they were playing cards when one looked at the other and said, “Now don’t be upset with me . . . I know we’ve been friends for years, but suddenly I can’t remember your name. I’m so sorry! Will you please remind me.”
Her friend glared at her. For at least two minutes she just glared at her without saying a word. Finally she said, “How soon do you need to know?”
The nice thing about being senile is that you can hide your own Easter eggs.
Nurse 1: How is the patient doing who swallowed ten quarters?
Nurse 2: No change yet!
Caregiver jobs can get heavy and stressful fast. It’s important to maintain a healthy sense of humor and keep things light! Share some of these CNA job jokes with your coworkers and spread the joy.
Looking for another excuse to laugh? Watch this video from our blog, Friday Caregiver Job Funny.
We talk about caregiver burnout in these blogs pretty often. We say that things like unhealthy habits, lack of caregiver training, or grief can lead to it. But what does it mean for a caregiver to burnout? What are they symptoms of the sickness? Let’s take a look:
Caregiver burnout (definition): the state of being emotionally, physically, and mentally exhausted to the point that it becomes difficult to do one’s job. It may also be accompanied by a severe change in overall behavior and attitude.
Caregiver burnout can happen when a caregiver doesn’t get the proper help or support with their job, and they feel they’re doing it alone. This can cause extreme amounts of stress and anxiety, that when they go undealt with, can lead to burnout.
How do I know if I’m experiencing caregiver burnout?
Burnout symptoms are oftentimes similar to symptoms of depression and stress. Some common symptoms include:
-Withdrawal from family and friends
-Irritability and feeling hopeless
-Change in weight/appetite
-Change in sleep patterns
-Emotional and physical exhaustion
If you’re experiencing symptoms like these from your caregiver job, you need to get help! Talk to a supervisor, seek help from a support group, or consult a professional. Take care of yourself and you’ll be more able to care for others!
Interested in learning more about caregiver burnout? Check out our blog that discusses how to prevent burnout from setting in: The ABCS of Preventing Caregiver Burnout
Last week I wrote a blog on the challenges people with caregiver jobs face on a regular basis. We asked for caregiver input and got some great responses! This blog is dedicated to providing solutions to the most common CNA job challenges.
Challenge: Troublesome co-workers
Solution: This is a challenge with many nuances depending on the unique situation. Some general pieces of advice we received from caregivers were 1. Be the bigger person. Trump their rudeness with niceness. 2. Try to imagine the situation from their perspective. Understanding builds empathy. 3. When things get bad, use your supervisor as a third party to mediate the conflict.
Challenge: Difficult clients
Solution: Again, the specifics of this issue vary with the unique scenario, but here is some universal advice from someone working as a caregiver. 1. Take a walk in their shoes and understand the difficulty of aging. 2. Find things they like to do and surprise them! Then they won’t be as unhappy doing things they don’t love. 3. Don’t take it personally! That person isn’t angry with you, they’re angry with the situation they’re in.
Challenge: Tough shifts and schedules
Solution: We asked our caregivers how they deal with difficult shifts and here’s what we heard. 1. Get a good night’s sleep before a long shift. Start winding down early so that you can fall asleep when you need to. 2. Overnights are easiest when you work them regularly. You may want to consider trying to work all overnights, rather than one every week. 3. Eat healthy and exercise! You’ll have more energy no matter when shift you’re working.
You’ll never find a challenge-free caregiver job, but that’s good, because challenges are what cause us to grow. Meet these challenges head-on and use this advice along the way! If you think of another tip to share, please leave a comment! We love hearing from you!
Challenges feel like too much for you? You might be near to caregiver burnout! Check out our blog called The ABCs of Preventing Caregiver Burnout to learn how to avoid it.
Every caregiver job comes with a unique set of challenges that are specific to the setting, coworkers, clients, and company. However, there are some challenges that are just part and parcel of working a caregiver job. In this blog we will compile a list of challenges all caregivers face and ask for your feedback! How do you cope with these obstacles? What tips and tricks can you offer other caregivers? Then, next week, we’ll post a blog with some of the solutions we heard from caregivers like you!
Common Caregiver Job Challenges (You’re not alone!):
1. Troublesome co-workers – Everyone has at least ONE co-worker of whom you’re not the biggest fan. That’s fine – it’s normal. We can’t always be crazy about everyone we meet. The challenge is how to deal with that person who rubs you the wrong way. How do you manage?
2. Difficult clients – Similar to co-workers, but this time it’s the people you’re providing care to! Some clients will just push your buttons. They might be stubborn, mean, or rude, but it’s your job to see through that and rise above. How have you done this is your CNA job?
3. Tough shifts and schedules – If you’ve been working as a caregiver for any length of time, you’ve experienced some long, difficult shifts. Whether they’re 12 hour non-stop, or overnights, you’ve learned that though they can pose a challenge to your endurance, they’re doable! Share your tips and strategies with the rest of us!
Feel free to comment and leave your two cents on how to face these common caregiver job challenges. Keep your eyes peeled for Part 2, where we’ll give you solutions to these challenges!
Did you know that Mount Rushmore is in South Dakota?
It is. And I only learned that when a dear friend of mine from the state told me that her grandfather had helped to build it. Pretty cool, huh?
This week, we offer recognition to the great state of South Dakota and examine what its caregiver training looks like. For caregivers and CNAs, it’s important to understand your state’s specific rules and requirements for your employment in the industry. South Dakota Caregiver Training consists of the following standards:
Homemakers/Caregivers: For in-home workers, there are no formal state training requirements. An agency may ask you to complete certain company-specific caregiver training before starting your caregiver job, but there are no formal state mandates to follow.
CNAs (Certified Nurse Aides): CNAs must find and complete a state-certified CNA school where they’ll learn the basics of providing patient care assistance for an RN or LPN. Once the school is completed, Certified Nursing Assistants must complete 12 hours of CEUs annually in order to keep certification current and work CNA jobs.
That’s all for South Dakota Caregiver Training! Stay tuned for our next entry – Tennessee!
Recently, we posted a blog with affordable holiday gift suggestions for your co-workers at your caregiver job. This week, we’d like to give suggestions for your clients!
First thing to keep in mind – be careful not to create jealousy. If you have an assisted living job or a nursing home job where you deal with numerous clients every day, it might not be a great idea to single out just a few to give holiday gifts to. If you’re going to give gifts, make sure you cover all your bases!
But back to the topic – if you have decided to buy holiday gifts for your clients at your CNA job but don’t know what to get them, we have a list full of inexpensive and fun ideas! Check it out!
1. A customized mug. Shutterfly offers to customize many regular objects by adding a picture of your choosing. You can submit a picture of you and your client, or a picture of the client’s family, and have it printed on a mug, or magnet, or even a deck of cards. You client will love the personal touch!
2. A fun game. Does your client like to play games? You might want to get them a new set of checkers, or maybe a new game like Bananagrams! It’ll be a great gift that you can use again and again at your caregiver job!
3. Holiday socks. I know we used this for the co-worker gift list, but it’s great for clients too! Give a pair of funky holiday socks to get your elderly client in the holiday spirit. Trust me, they’ll love showing them off to people. This is a good option if you need to buy gifts for multiple clients.
4. Gift cards. If you have the freedom to take your client out and about, gift cards can be a fun idea! Give them a gift card to a nearby restaurant and then set a date to go out together. A gift card to get mani-pedis can be a great gift for a female client!
5. Cozy clothes. During the chilly holiday season, get your client a pair of new slippers, a bathrobe, or maybe just a cozy blanket to cuddle up with!
Be creative and customize your gift for your special client. It’ll add some holiday cheer to your caregiver job and touch the hearts of those you care for. Happy Holidays!
Looking for a way to bring holiday cheer to your caregiver job? What better way than with thoughtful gifts for your co-workers?! I know what you’re thinking – “That sounds expensive. Doesn’t this lady know that caregiver jobs pay rates aren’t much to write home about?” Well, yes I do know that, but this doesn’t have to be a bank-breaking venture. Let us help you out with a list of gifts that are free/cheap and that your work family will LOVE receiving!
1. Holiday socks. I know, sounds cheesy. Plus, really who wants more socks? But hear me out. Socks are a fun way to accessorize with scrubs. It’s especially fun if you can get everyone to wear crazy holiday socks one day. And trust me, clients will eat it up when you yank up your pant-leg and reveal your holiday spirit!
2. Baked goods. This is an obvious, yet timeless gift. What kind of grinch doesn’t want to receive delicious baked goods as a gift? So bring a plate of treats to your caregiver job and watch the faces of your co-workers light up.
3. Holiday tea. As we know, being a caregiver can be stressful. Give the gift of relaxation with a cup of hot tea. Mugs can be really cheap and obviously a box of tea bags doesn’t cost too much! Tie a few packets of your favorite tea to the handle of a cute mug and BAM! You have a cute and thoughtful holiday gift.
4. A stay-healthy kit. Caregivers can go through a LOT of hygiene supplies. Why not give a practical gift of a pocket-sized hand sanitizer and travel tissues? Show that you care about their health and give them a gift they’ll actually use. It’s perfect!
5. Stress ball. We’ve said it before – CNA jobs can be STRESSFUL at times. If you’re more of the office funny-guy, consider giving co-workers a stress ball. Acknowledge your comradery in your challenging jobs and offer your “support.” It’ll definitely get some laughs.
Hope you found those suggestions helpful. Stay tuned for more holiday gift suggestions, but next time for your clients!
Job satisfaction is key to getting a caregiver job and sticking with it. Job satisfaction means that when you come home from a shift, you feel a sense of accomplishment and purpose. It’s what makes you keep chugging along when the going gets tough.
Working as a caregiver naturally comes with a pretty high level of job satisfaction. Every day, your work improves the life of another person – what could bring more purpose or meaning?! Being a caregiver is like being someone’s hero – HUGE job satisfaction booster.
But even for caregivers, it’s extremely important to keep satisfaction in mind when you’re job hunting. Does this company provide sufficient opportunities for me to grow and get better at my job? Do people seem to like working here? Do they provide the caregiver training I need to succeed? Is this CNA job going to encourage me to do my best work everyday? These are important things to ask yourself in order to test the caregiver job satisfaction waters.
What does caregiver job satisfaction mean for you? What makes you stick around even when things get challenging? Comment and share with us!
Often times, we hear family caregivers talking about grief and how to cope with the loss of a loved one. However, a lesser discussed subject is professional grief – when those working paid caregiver jobs experience loss.
Though a professional caregiver’s grief is often times more subtle, distant and hidden, it is still very real on an emotional and internal level. Caregivers often spend hours and hours with the same person for months, if not years, on end. Naturally, many caregivers get to know their clients quite well and form strong bonds with them. When a client dies, the caregiver enters a potentially unexpected grieving process.
Since the relationship was a professional one, she may feel awkward for feeling sad and upset, causing her to be hesitant to express her feelings. Professional caregiver grief often is suppressed or hidden, and when that grief is not dealt with in a healthy manner, it can cause larger issues for a caregiver in the long-run. Those who work for years in a caregiver or CNA job are susceptible to experiencing multiple deaths in a short period of time, putting them at risk for “bereavement overload,” with no time to grieve properly.
Grieving is an unavoidable part of life, and caregivers who experience loss are not exempt from the process. It’s important that even those with professional caregiver jobs get the outlets and help they need to grieve when they lose a client. Oftentimes agencies have support groups in place, where caregivers can talk about their deceased client and express what they liked about them. For other people, grieving may mean journaling about the person, attending the funeral, or seeking support outside of work (there are online resources and support groups available).
Whatever the method, it’s extremely important that professional caregivers first acknowledge their feelings of loss and then find a healthy way to cope and recover.
Recently, The New York Times ran an article in the Opinion section entitled Labor Rights for Home Care Workers. The article addresses laws and labor regulations that directly affect people with home care jobs- people just like you. The story goes like this . . .
Back in 2011, the Labor Department, under the guidance of President Obama, began to change regulations for home care workers, entitling them to minimum wage as well as time and a half for overtime. In the past, home care workers were mistakenly labeled as “companions” rather than employees, allowing some companies to underpay home health workers and pocket extra money from Medicaid. The changes were set to be put into effect January 1, 2015.
These policy changes would eradicate such problems by mandating that all states guarantee anyone with a caregiver job at least minimum wage. Though the policies were written and completed in 2013, a few states (AZ, KS, TN, and OR) have written letters into the Labor Department, asking to delay the new laws, claiming that they need more time to investigate how the new policies will affect their Medicaid programs. Other states are ready to put laws into action come Jan. 1, 2015.
What do you think about these policy changes? Do you empathize with the states who are requesting a delay? Comment and tell us what you think! After all, you are the ones working caregiver jobs and you are the ones directly affected by these changes. Let’s hear what you have to say!