Self-Care & Caregiver Activities to Manage Your Stress.

Finding self-care activities to keep you sane and healthy when you’re a caregiver helping someone fight cancer is not an easy task.

The thing is, once cancer drops in, it takes over your entire life.  It invades your thoughts and your mind and it drains your energy, not to mention the toll it takes on your physical health.

Cancer is a huge undertaking that no one could be prepared for.   Your stress levels are through the roof.  Cancer is like chronic stress.  Figuring out how to balance all of this and develop easier ways to manage your daily life is hard… but TOTALLY POSSIBLE.

Heads Up: Helping a family member fight cancer requires a TON of inspiration and encouragement. That’s what the Take Back Your Life From Cancer journal is all about and we will give it to you FOR FREE …

This whole cancer business is situation is mentally and physically exhausting to both the patient AND the caregiver.  

You are always fighting to win.  But it’s hard to keep going full force, when there is not a whole lot to look forward to day after day.

And even the short breaks (you sometimes get in-between the crisis- stressful situations) don’t give you enough time to recuperate.  

The stressful times are constant and intense during cancer…  

When my dad was diagnosed with cancer, I spent a tremendous amount of time in waiting rooms, hospital rooms, living rooms…  generally stuck inside.

I needed an escape and some healthy ways to deal with the hard times


A way to get caught up in or think about ANYTHING else, other than cancer.

So I made a list of self-care strategies that I could use when I desperately needed a break from this whole thing. Simple things to combat the excessive stress that I was feeling on a daily basis.

Some of these activities I could do with my dad, some were perfect for me when I was mentally drained and my brain literally couldn’t handle one more thing and other activities were for the days when I needed some perspective and inspiration.  

So if you’re looking for different ways to deal with the long-term stress, these self-care activities will help YOU deal with the ongoing stress of this crazy situation… 

The Ultimate List of Caregiver Activities

1. Write your personal vision.
2. Write the stories of your life.
3. Unload in your Journal. (The best way to beat the effects of stress)
4. Write down everything you’re grateful for.
5. Write down 5 things that you could do every day to improve your life. Now devise a plan to get them done.
6. Write down 5 things that would make your finances better.
7. Write a letter to 5 people you can’t live without.
8.  Find videos on YouTube and work out at home. (Regular exercise helps a lot)
9. Try meditation. (Great relaxation techniques that’s great for your overall health).
10. Try a new recipe.
11. Talk to God about everything. (Add this to your daily routine, you won’t be sorry!)
12. Take inventory of your life.
13. Grab a nap. (There’s no way you’re getting enough sleep).
14. Take a Masterclass. (Learn to cook with Gordon Ramsey, learn country music with Reba McEntire, learn to write with James Patterson).
15. Take a course in happiness.
16. Take a class on something that interests you.  Check out Udemy.
17. Take warm baths. (Bubble baths).
18. Study and practice mindfulness. (Learn to live in the present moment)
19. Stay in your pajamas.
Finally a caregiver activity list that will help my mental health.
20. Begin your Christmas shopping.
21. Start an indoor garden.
22. Start a stockroom.
23. Do a puzzle. (Then frame it and hang it in a guest room).
24. Read a book. (My favorite form of self-care.)
25. Start a blog about your experience.
26. Start a bible study.
27. Spa Day (Take care of your body by doing a hair mask, nails, cucumber slices for your eyes)
28. Sing karaoke.
29. Sing all of the Disney songs you know.
Finally a list of caregiver activities I actually have the time for!
30. Sewing/crocheting/needle point.
31. Set up a filing system. Like this Cancer Binder.  
32. Send everyone you love a video.
33. Send cards to all your friends and family.
34. Scrapbooking and crafts.
35. Research an AMAZING trip (that you will eventually go on).
36. Research a topic you want to know more about.
37. Read the Bible.
38. Read a great book (If reading isn’t your thing, you can listen to a book on audiobooks).
39. Rate your emotional intelligence.
Finally a list of caregiver activities that will actually work for me!
40. Pray.
41. Practice deep breathing. (It’s easy, take a deep breath.  In through your nose and out through your mouth). 
42. Play video games or scroll through social media.
43. Start a game of solitaire.
44. Play games on your phone. (Wordscapes, Words With Friends, Trivia Crack, 8 Ball, Scrabble ).
45. Checkers or chess.
46. Play card games.
47. Plan your next trip to Disney World.
48. Plan a gathering/event.
49. Paint and sip. Or just paint. (create something amazing).
A huge list of caregiver activities that are totally doable.
50. Paint a room.
51. Organize your computer files.
52. Organize the kitchen cabinets.
53. Movie Marathon. (Watch all the Harry Potter Movies, or all of the original Star Wars Movies.)
54. Meal plan dinners for next week.
55. Margarita Night (with or without alcohol).
56. Make your own sugar scrub.
57. DIY ice cream sundae.
58. Make jelly or applesauce. (YouTube will walk you through the entire process).
59. Hot chocolate and whip cream.
60. Create chocolate covered strawberries.
61. Cook blueberry pancakes.
62. Make a smoothie with your favorite fruits and veggies.
63. Cook a huge pot of soup or chili and freeze the leftovers.
64. Make a fancy cake.
65. Create a collage of the quotes that apply to your life.
66. Make a bucket list.
67. Listen to your favorite music.
68. Listen to a podcast.
69. List your life.
70. Learn to read notes.
71. Mix cocktails.
72. Learn to make printables.
73. Belly Dance.
74. Learn something on YouTube.
75. Learn a language.
76. Help your neighbor.
77. Have a picnic in bed.
78. Have a casino night.
79. Hallmark Christmas Movies.
80. Grab a therapy journal and fill it out.
81. Get dressed up and take a ton of pictures.
82. Fix something that’s broken.
83. Feed the birds.
84. Family game night.
85. Exercise. (They have everything from chair exercises to aerobics on YouTube).
86. Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses.
87. Do something you’ve been putting off.
88. Stretch.
89. Do a puzzle.
90. Declutter.
91. Dance around your living room. (You can find dance classes on YouTube).
92. Cuddle your animals. (They will appreciate the love!)
93. Crossword Puzzles/Trivia Games. (keep your mind sharp and active).
94. Cook international cuisine.
95. Create a vision board.
96. Design a scrapbook.
97. Build a Lego village
98. Create a 5 course dinner.
99. Cooking and baking. (Cookies, cakes, pies, cupcakes, scones…)
100. Color! It’s therapeutic.
101. Clean out your closet and donate it to charity.
102. Clean out your cabinets.
103. Choose 5 goals that would change your life and break them down step by step.
104. Catch up with family via FaceTime.
105. Call all your friends and family. (Take this time to catch up and keep in touch with the people that matter most.)
106. Ask yourself 10 life changing questions.
107. Brainstorm and write down all the things that make you happy. (A great way to replace some of the negative thoughts and the negative self-talk you might be dealing with).
108. Blast your favorite music.
109. Binge watch your favorite series from start to finish.
110. Build a dollhouse.
111. Answer 20 self discovery questions. (Focus on your own needs for a while).

This ultimate list of caregiver self care activities will help you find meaningful ideas to escape from the craziness of cancer and do something healthy, worthwhile, and positive for your mental health

You can find more caregiver activity ideas to take a break or escape from cancer in these posts…

My Favorite Ways to Combat Stress…

117 Ways to Take a Break From Cancer…

Take Back Your Life From Cancer…

What’s your favorite way to escape from cancer for a while? Let us know in the comments.

P.S.  How do you keep fighting when you’re exhausted and devastated?  You clear your mind, get some of this stress out of your system and you focus on what’s important.  

Take Back Your Life From Cancer is a journal created to help you find hope, perspective and the motivation you’ll need to keep fighting in the midst of the storm. And the best part, it’s free. 

You can grab Take Back Your Life From Cancer here for free…

This post may contain affiliate links, which means we may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. We only recommend products that we use and LOVE. You can see our full disclosure here for further information.

 We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

About The Author

Similar Posts