The caregiving journey can be a long and challenging one, with various emotional ups and downs. One question that often arises is: why do some individuals handle caregiving more effectively than others?

Let’s delve into understanding the mindset of successful caregivers.

1. The Essence of Choice in Caregiving

The act of caregiving is fundamentally a choice. When individuals actively decide to embrace their role as caregivers, it often lightens the burdens and challenges associated with it. Those who approach caregiving reluctantly or feel forced into it often harbor resentment and find the experience more daunting.

2. Recognizing the Power of Intention

When a person mentally acknowledges their caregiving responsibilities and genuinely embraces them, it tends to make the journey smoother. Accepting this pivotal role can significantly impact one's approach and reaction to caregiving's inherent challenges.

3. My Personal Transformation: From Resentment to Acceptance

Around 18 months ago, I found myself overwhelmed with the responsibilities of caring for my ailing father. This sense of burden didn’t stem from the actual tasks of caregiving but rather from my initial reluctance to accept this new role in my life. It was only when I decided to actively engage in my role as a caregiver that the whole scenario began to shift.

4. The Power of Proactivity in Caregiving

Choosing to be a caregiver can be an empowering decision. It provides clarity, and even if the journey isn't mapped out perfectly, having a general direction or plan can make all the difference. By actively determining how to support our loved ones, we can approach challenges with a problem-solving mindset rather than feeling defeated by them.

5. Embracing Challenges: Life and Caregiving

Life, in general, is filled with challenges and uncertainties. Choosing to be a caregiver and accepting its inherent challenges can change one’s perspective, leading to a more positive and proactive approach.

6. Empowerment: The True Hallmark of Successful Caregiving

More than the physical tasks and responsibilities, the defining characteristic of a successful caregiver is their mindset. Actively choosing to provide care, setting boundaries, and continuously working on one's perspective are key elements in a fulfilling caregiving journey.

senior with dementia happy and smiling with her caregiver


Caregiving, at its core, is a deeply personal journey. While the physical tasks might be similar, the emotional and mental experiences vary based on our choices and perspectives.

Embracing caregiving as a conscious decision can transform challenges into opportunities and burdens into privileges. I hope this insight offers guidance and inspiration to caregivers everywhere. Join us again for more insights in the next episode.

Let me know in the comments below if you have questions about dementia that you need answered.

If you would like more information on how to help a parent living with dementia, join our next free workshop here.

Read More:

It Is Hard Watching Someone You Love Decline

Why Having Your Parent With Dementia Be Independent With Eating And Drinking Is Good For Them

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About the author

“Think Different” Dementia’s owner, Lizette Cloete, OTR/L graduated as an Occupational Therapist from the University of Pretoria in South Africa in 1992. Lizette has almost 30 years of experience as an Occupational Therapist in a variety of settings, the latest being in the home health environment. She enjoys teaching on the topic of dementia, most recently presenting at a national conference on the topic “Dementia Made Simple”.

Disclaimer: These blogs, videos and any work done by Lizette Cloete OT, as a Member of Think Different Dementia, LLC, is given only as educational content and consulting work. This does not create an Occupational Therapist-Patient Relationship. The educational content and consulting work performed should not be considered medical treatment as an Occupational Therapist. The consulting work does not take the place of medical work normally performed by a licensed Occupational Therapist. Please consult a licensed Occupational Therapist for medical advice.

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