Yesterday, I announced the book I am writing: “The Spirituality of Care Giving: A Practical Guide for a Care Giver. I promised that over the next 90 days, I would explore in this blog what I mean by “the spirituality of care giving.” Today, Day 2, I am going to expand upon why the spiritual approach is practical.
Anyone who is or has been a Care Giver knows there are a lot of things “to do.” Reflecting on my own experience as a Care Giver, I remembered the times there were tasks I didn’t know how to do or I didn’t want to do. There were tasks I did do that I did with an ‘attitude.’ I performed those tasks with different attitudes ranging from feeling obligated to feeling excitement.
If we center our approach to care giving around ‘doing,’ at some point we’ll reach a state of burn out. Burn out is the point we reach when we feel like we can’t do another thing for the person we are caring for.
I believe that to be a competent care giver we have to know who we are being as a care giver and the attitudes we have as we go about doing the tasks of care giving. Without understanding the ‘being’ and ‘having’ aspects of care giving, it will be difficult to execute the ‘doing’ of care giving without eventually burning out.
It is understanding the relationship among the ‘being’ , ‘doing, and ‘having’ of care giving that I call the “spirituality of care giving.” Without this understanding, the practical work of care giving will remain a problem without a solution.