Caring for the Caregiver – Nancy Poland

Learning to mitigate a caregiving crisis in one’s personal life will help you be more effective and productive in your professional life.” Nancy Poland

As the demand for family caregivers increases, one of the biggest challenges that comes up is the unawareness of what to do and when due to the lack of preparedness. Our guest today Nancy Poland, has been a caregiver and says that planning for caregiving responsibilities ahead of time can go along way into helping people get through the challenges. 

Nancy Poland, owner of Nancy R Poland Connect, is a writer and speaker focusing on caregiving. As a volunteer educator for the Alzheimer’s Association, she brings her experience as a caregiver for her dad, who was diagnosed with Lewy body dementia. She published her first book, “Dancing With Lewy: A Father Daughter Dance Before and After Lewy Body Dementia Came to Live With Us”, narrating their experience. Her second book, “Remarkable Caregiving: The Care of Family and Friends” will be released in November 2021. “Remarkable Caregiving” is a collection of true stories from six caregivers thrust into unplanned circumstances as they emerge wiser and more resilient.

Nancy issues a monthly newsletter, “Caring for the Caregiver”, blogs about caregiving, and communicates to caregivers in social media and in person. She is looking forward to more group presentations as her business contacts grow, and COVID-19 subsides. A life-long resident of the Twin Cities in Minnesota, Nancy and her husband John raised two sons and continue to contribute to their communities.

Professionally Nancy is a Contracts and Compliance Manager where she utilizes her writing and negotiation skills to support the mission of a non-profit corporation. She is a trainer and mentor, both professionally, and in a volunteer capacity.

In today’s episode, Nancy will talk about her work of connecting caregivers to resources, teaching them how they can better the lives of their loved ones, as well as themselves.

Listen in!

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  • As my parents aged, they became more fragile and so we were balancing taking care of my parents, while working, travelling and raising our teenage son. [3:16]
  • I learned that it’s really hard to be your full potential at work when you’re also trying to balance all these other things. [4:36]
  • A lot of us don’t plan for our parents aging and becoming fragile but it’s really something that if we can think about ahead of time, it can help us get through those days. [4:48]
  • We tend as human beings to go into denial and don’t want to think about our parents aging and getting fragile. [5:44]
  • One of my main goals is to educate future caregivers to help people face the reality that if we all live long enough, we will probably become medically fragile and therefore need to plan for it. [6:32]
  • I tried to provide a place in my website where I have resources for caregivers where seniors can get help to keep them safe, and to keep them functioning in those homes. [10:35]
  • Once my mom passed away, my dad couldn’t live on his own so we moved him to a senior apartment building that had services you could buy up. [11:46]
  • People shouldn’t feel guilty because you just have to deal with life too and also be your best at work. [12:26]
  • Commercial break. [13:00]
  • I think it’s so important to be a functioning member of the community and fortunately, the work places have gotten more flexible, especially since COVID. [15:44]
  • If we can take care of our health and our well being, while we’re taking care of our loved ones, it’s just going to benefit everybody and us especially. [17:19]
  • There’s not enough assisted living opportunities or nursing homes that take care of people, and it’s hard to get some new nursing home unless you’re willing to pay. [18:50]
  • One of the most important things I emphasize, is to get your legal paperwork in order to prevent a lot of heartache in case of anything. [19:07]
  • I have lots of links for caregiving resources and accounts of very practical things to do in different situations. [23:02]
  • One really exciting thing I have today is for the first 10 people who send me an email, I will send them a free copy an E copy of Dancing With Louie. [23:35]
  • Break yourself out of the denial mode and search for resources ahead of time if your parents or grandparents are starting to get frail. [25:02]
  • Try to plan ahead and to find resources s well as getting your legal paperwork in order. [25:33]
  • Take care of yourself, because that’s the only way you’re going to be able to take care of your loved ones, and you have to have a life after they pass away. [26:07]


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