Managing Parenting Stress

Parenting stress as the name suggests in stressed associated with being a parent. It is unfortunately, unavoidable but luckily manageable especially once you identify your stress signs. The most common signs that one is stressed is difficulty sleeping or focusing, fast breathing, increased heart rate and/or muscle tension. 

Here are five tips on how to manage your stress levels:

1) Practice relaxation techniques: 
Once you are able to identify your stress signs you can then easily manage your stress levels before it gets too high. This could be through trying out some deep breathing techniques, exercising, going to your happy place or picturing pleasant images in your head, watching funny clips or even saving and reading motivational quotes on your phone. It also helps to find a hobby you enjoy doing and setting sometime every week to unwind and do it or 10 minutes every evening to read a book in silence – mommy time.

2) Simplify your life: 
Setting up a routine and sticking to it is one way to minimize on stress. Simple things like ironing your kid’s clothes in the evening will help avoid the morning rush. It also helps your kids know what is expected of them and curbs on unnecessary fights.

3) Set aside family time:
Your family and home is where you should feel most relaxed. This is often difficult if every moment spent there is a “battle”. Set aside some family time every week – remember those Sunday lunches which we used to look forward to as kids, well now it’s your turn to make memories. Play games, laugh, talk and most importantly share and get to know your kids.

4) Identify your stress triggers: 
Once you know what often causes you to get stressed it becomes easier to manage it. If it’s morning traffic, leave early. If it’s tight deadlines, set realistic goals. Also try to avoid stress ignitors where possible such as negative people; and above all remember “it’s never that serious” so try not to take things to personally.

5) Establish a support system: 
Having a strong support system isn’t just great for babysitting but they also lend a listening ear and advice based on their own experience (especially if they are older). Join mom groups and ask questions if you need advice, you can do this anonymously through the admins – it helps to know you are not alone. But also be smart about the advice you choose to follow.

If all else fails and you feel like the stress is getting overwhelming it is okay to seek professional help. A psychiatrist might be able to teach you some coping mechanisms and a paediatrician might be able to guide you on how to effectively deal with tantrums if you have toddlers and that is your main cause of stress. None the less, remember that no parent is perfect and take it one day at a time.

Do you have any tips you use which you’ll like to add to this list? Feel free to write them on the comment section below.


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