Emotional Well-being from an Expert

Multiple people showing emotion|Emotional Well-being from an Expert

Importance of Emotions

Here are a few of the reasons our emotions are important in our lives. By the way, emotional intelligence has a good presentation on evolution and emotions.

Survival

Nature developed our emotions over millions of years of evolution. As a result, our emotions have the potential to serve us today as a delicate and sophisticated internal guidance system.  For example, when we feel lonely; our need for connection with other people is unmet. When we feel afraid, our need for safety is unmet. When we feel rejected, it is our need for acceptance that is unmet.

Decision Making

Our emotions are a valuable source of information. Our emotions help us make decisions. Studies show that when a person’s emotional connections are severed in the brain, he cannot make even simple decisions. Why? Because he doesn’t know how he will feel about his choices.

Boundary Setting

When we feel uncomfortable with a person’s behavior, our emotions alert us. If we learn to trust our emotions and feel confident expressing ourselves, we can let the person know we feel uncomfortable as soon as we are aware of our feelings. This will help us set our boundaries, which are necessary to protect our physical and mental health.

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How To Communicate in a Caregiving Crisis

Doctor attending to patient|How To Communicate in a Caregiving Crisis

 

Communication

First of all, communication is an important skill for anyone. It’s especially important as a caregiver. Good communication skills will lay the groundwork for your relationship with your patient to provide the best care possible. Your patient needs to feel that you are having a conversation with them—that you respect them—even if they cannot understand everything you are saying.

Communication Is More than Speaking and Listening

Second of all, when we think about communicating, two aspects come to mind immediately—speaking and listening. However, when you are going to speak about important topics with your aging patient, it would be wise to think things through carefully on your own before you actually talk with them. Focus on the specifics of what you want to cover.

In addition, what words we choose to use definitely matter when the topics are emotional ones! Don’t rush the conversation to a conclusion because that could prove frustrating to you and your aging patient. As we age, it takes longer to do things, and that includes thinking things over as ideas unfold. Realize the fact going in and don’t try to rush your patient into making decisions. The goal of this communication is to maximize the patient’s independence.

First Encounters

For this reason, learn about your patients’ backgrounds by asking questions about their lives. Also, ask the patient how they would like to spend their time, their likes and dislikes, about their family, etc. Try to find the communication method that works best with each individual patient early in your relationship. Always face your patients when you speak and always maintain eye contact; ask what they think would be good solutions.

Never Be Patronizing

Remember, you are talking to an adult, not a child. It is important to realize, the patronizing speech will put older adults on the defensive and convey a lack of respect for them. Put yourself in their shoes and think of how you would want to be spoken to in the situation. Look for answers that optimize strengths and compensate for problems. Be aware of the whole situation; many of the issues of aging can be solved by providing the patient with the support they need.

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