Here at HCA/CCG we don’t shy away from real issues.
We approach them head on and give you the tools and strategies to provide exceptional quality of care whether things are going great… or things are going less-than-great. Today, I will be sharing with you some ideas on how to work with your client when they are having a rough day and end up taking it out on you, the caregiver.
“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows.” These powerful words were expressed by Rocky in his 2006 film while talking to his son. He was trying to share with him that there will be difficult times and that he must stand tall during the trying times and press on.
This quote may ring even more true if you are a caregiver. You may find yourself on the wrong side of some hurtful words. It happens. We all have bad days and sometimes say things we don’t mean.
How do you handle yourself with professionalism and kindness?
In this post, I will give you 5 techniques that will not only help prevent you from getting flustered but also ease the client and build better rapport.
5 Tips To Help You Handle Yourself Professionally… And With Kindness
If you have ever found yourself in this type of situation you need to take the initiative and try to make it right.
“But Todd… I didn’t do anything wrong. In fact, I did everything right and I was still berated. It wasn’t my fault.”
That’s ok. You still need to take the first step and try to make things right. If you don’t, than there is a greater likelihood that rapport could be hurt. This affects quality of care tremendously. Remember that we are striving to create a culture of gentleness and taking initiative is the first step.
Below you will find 5 tools to help you make the situation better.
1. Take A Deep Breath
When you breathe deeply it instantly relaxes you. No matter what situation you find yourself in if you start to focus on your breath you can calm yourself down and handle things rationally and with a clear mind.
Be the first to apologize. This is important even if you didn’t do anything wrong. Apologies have power. They show that you care enough for someone to express that you hurt them in some way. This shouldn’t be an insincere apology. Say it with genuineness. “Mr. Jones, I am so sorry that I left the slider door open and let these flies in. That was a huge mistake and I apologize for it.”
3. Don’t Take It Personal
When we take things too personally it can eat us up inside. If you made the mistake, apologize for it and move on. If you didn’t make the mistake and a client is still saying hurtful things… don’t take it personal. If you struggle with this here are 5 tips to help you not take things personally.
4. See The Situation From Their Point Of View
Each person on this planet seeings things from a different point of view. What is small to you may be huge to your client. Lets take the fly example again. You may leave the slider door open all the time at your own home. Flies come in and out as they please and it doesn’t bother you one bit. For you client, flies could represent extreme dirtiness and disease. So they see flies in the house as far more than little bugs with wings. And you know what? That’s ok. Each person is different. Try your best to see things from their point of view and life will go a lot smoother.
5. Understand The Anatomy Of The Injury
This tip doesn’t apply to every case but is one thing I like to share with anyone that is about to work with someone with a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). When an individual sustains a TBI, the most frequent area of the brain that is damaged is the frontal lobe. This area controls:
- Main movement of extremities, trunk and eyes
If one or more of these areas aren’t functioning optimally this can occasionally cause some frustration. Lets go back to our example. The slider door was left open. You may know for a fact that it was actually the client that left it open and let the flies in. Yet if you tell this to him this may get him even angrier because he doesn’t remember doing it and may see you as accusing him for doing something he didn’t do.
Realize that when the frontal lobe is damaged it can affect any of the above areas. If your client is having a behavioral issue or problem with remembering something or making a bad judgement call… it may be due to the nature of the injury.
I hope that these 5 tips have helped you realize how to handle yourself professionally and lovingly when you are in a difficult situation. Knowledge is power and with the right tools you can become equipped to handle anything.