Parenting is a crazy mix of pleasures and pressures. There are times it can get too much and you could feel extremely burdened with tasks, overwhelmed by many responsibilities and plagued by anxieties - leading to a state of complete burnout.
Trying to take out some time for yourself is not only a huge blessing for your own well-being but also drastically changes the lives of your children. Over-stressed and frazzled parents make for overstressed and frazzled families. You may feel the need to be on duty all the time but there aren’t really any advantages to 24/7 parenting — it’s another form of stress for the modern day parent. No one can be available all day without becoming awfully tired, drained and run-down.
Here are some self-care strategies to consider:
Keep doing what makes you happy and healthy -
Find one activity you do that keeps you sane and strong and then commit to it! No matter how busy you are, try and make it happen. Reading, hiking, music, movies, dancing, or whatever you pick, stick to it.
Play to your strengths -
As with children, adult resilience relies on acknowledging what you do well, instead of wallowing in self-judgement. Take steady, small steps toward change, pushing back against perfectionism and negativity. Play to your strengths and allow for steady, long-term progress toward family goals.
Take a break-
There’s an adage around rock climbing: If you find a solid hold that allows for a rest, take a break. Who knows the next time rest will be available? This is exactly how one should live their lives - Throughout the day and your life, if you see a chance, grab it! Take a breather. Instead of constantly doing and fixing things, and of course, browsing social media and succumbing to technology, try and actively choose something that lets you relax for a minute or two.
Find out your ideal outlet-
It may sound impossible sometimes, but it’s important you have an outlet to release your tension and stress every single day. Take 2 minutes every morning to just breathe, take it all in and think about yourself. Try meditating or journaling, if you have the time. Finally, having some shower time at the end of the day can help relax and take away all that tension. It can help you unwind.
Building a strong support network-
Having a supportive and understanding partner or spouse is great, but sometimes many individuals need more help. Parenting groups are an excellent way to meet like-minded parents and individuals. They might just help you feel seen, heard and understood. Finding a sitter or a childcare provider is also a good option, particularly if you're looking for a break. After all of this, if you’re still feeling overwhelmed, you may want to contact a therapist or a psychologist.
In conclusion, it’s crucial to remember that your kids get only one childhood. And when it comes to you, you’ll only get to experience them once as your little ones. It’s normal to feel burned out or distracted once in a while, but it’s also likely that you’ll miss out on many special moments if this becomes a habit. Every parent surely struggles with maintaining a balance, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t find a happy medium for you and your family. Therefore, focus on what your body and mind needs to get better and go all out to achieve that and in the process, don’t give up!