9 Best Tips to Fix Parenting Stress
Stress with parenting is inevitable. Your kids are going to drive you crazy and some days nothing goes as planned. However, there are many ways you can limit the stress you do have. And wouldn’t that be amazing to take any amount of stress away, even a little bit, so you can be in the moment and enjoy parenting?
I am one that most definitely can stress easily. Whether it is work-related, due to lack of sleep, or my son is just refusing to charge his listening ears (something we say in our home). I can find myself getting overwhelmed, but I am also able to limit the amount of stress with these tips.
What is Parenting Stress?
I am sure you know the feeling. Your daughter is just not listening to you. You swear you are talking to the wall. Maybe you start to question yourself and think, did I really even ask her to clean her room? Yes mamma, you did, you are just stressed. Stress is like a pot of boiling water. For a while, it can be managed and contained with a little attention, but let it sit and boil over and the mess is much larger.
So how does this affect your life? If you are stressed all day, do you think your son notices? Let me tell you a secret, he does! He notices so much more than you think. However, as I said before, it is truly inevitable, and it is ok! Your child needs to learn boundaries and how their actions can affect others. They also need to see how these big feelings are resolved by adults.
Why Does Parenting Stress Happen?
- Because parenting is incredibly difficult.
- When your child is a newborn they change their routine weekly.
- When they are a toddler they are beginning to have big emotions that they don’t know how to handle.
- When they start school they begin to interact with other children and experience much larger issues.
- When they go through puberty bigger emotions come up that they don’t know how to handle.
- When they are teenagers they are trying to find themselves.
- And so many other examples.
9 Best Tips to Limit Parenting Stress
OK, so how do we limit this inevitable parenting stress?
- Tip 1: Organize
- Avoid lost toy tantrums when all the toys are organized.
- Develop a meal plan and post it somewhere so everyone knows what to expect for dinner (even you).
- Set out the kid’s clothes for the next day for no morning time stress.
- Tip 2: Have a routine
- Have a common family routine so there are set expectations.
- Allow a set time for playing with your children.
- Use timers. Very effective in younger children as they can’t argue with a timer, to them it is set in stone.
- Tip 3: Breathing techniques
- Utilize these even if you feel silly at first. They are incredibly effective and there are many variations.
- My favorite is one I actually was taught in nursing school, 4-7-8 Breathing. It is one of the best gifts I was ever given.
- If the situation is right, do these in front of your children. Don’t be scared to show them you are stressed and how to cope with this big emotion.
- Tip 4: Mommy time-out
- Sometimes it is just best to take a time-out. Sometimes, after reflecting, you realize that it wasn’t the kids or your spouse that did anything wrong. You simply just need some me-time.
- I’ll be honest and say I wish I knew this sooner. It is ok to step away. It is ok for your husband to need an hour to himself or “go poop” for 30 minutes.
- The end result will be much better if you allow alone time for you and your spouse if you begin to feel overwhelmed.
- Tip 5: Conversation
- And then there are times where it is clear it’s not you, it’s them.
- Try to have a conversation, if able, and simply ask your child why they are acting this way. It makes them take notice of their actions, realize you do not approve, and understand change is needed.
- Work with your child to find a solution.
- Tip 6: Change the room
- Literally go do the same activity, just in a different space. Sometimes, this is all it takes.
- You and your daughter are doing virtual learning and she just cannot focus. Take note of how she is sitting, where you are, is she staring out the window or is she surrounded by 4 walls.
- Go find a different setting and try again.
- Tip 7: Change activities
- Maybe it is the activity that is causing the stress.
- You have been playing with Playdough with your son for 15 minutes now and he continues to try to eat that purple and blue hotdog he made. This is obviously not working, you tell yourself.
- So, limit your stress, and find a new activity so both you and your son can enjoy your time together.
- Tip 8: Do something for yourself
- You are just not the Pinterest mom today and feel as if you are failing at everything.
- Step away, get in your favorite PJs, doesn’t matter the time of day, walk to the kitchen and make a cup of coffee in your favorite mug. You know, the one with the motivational quote, or your initial.
- Just taking 5 minutes to do something for yourself to provide instant joy can really change the whole day.
- Tip 9: Tell yourself you are a good parent
- Because you are!
- Even on the worst of days. No one is listening, the house is a wreck, the only thing on the dinner menu is boxed mac-n-cheese. Even in these times, you are loving your children and you are trying.
- You are a good parent!
The Last Thing You Need to Know about Parenting Stress
We have established that parenting stress is inevitable but manageable. We have gone over 9 easy solutions to help you with your stress and could possibly change the whole day or prevent a breakdown altogether.
Which tip do you already use? Which tip do you think you will start using?