As a parent, it’s easy to become stressed, especially if you have multiple children. You are responsible for the care of other people and want to do everything in your power to keep them safe, and prepare them for the world. Furthermore, you have your own life to think about; your own obligations and dreams. That’s a big weight to carry around. When you become so stressed you can hardly think and start yelling, you won’t be helping anyone. Use these five tips to stay calm as a parent.
1. Stop over-parenting.
One of the hardest parts of parenting is backing off, but it’s absolutely necessary to develop well-rounded people. You will cause yourself a lot of stress and anxiety if you feel compelled to run to your child every time he whimpers. Let your kids handle some of their own struggles while you watch from afar (when it’s safe, of course). Let the tantrum pass without addressing it. If your daughter has a disagreement with a schoolmate, give her a minute to work it out. You’ll be surprised how many problems don’t require your interference.
2. You aren’t just a parent.
In the early years of your child’s life, you spend a majority of your time parenting, but as they age you’ll find yourself with more free time. Don’t let parenthood define your life. Remember all the other things you like doing or the places you like going. Make time for that type of stuff. Reconnect with your friends and pick up old hobbies. When your son or daughter doesn’t want to spend time with you, don’t despair or feel abandoned. Further, your children will benefit by seeing you as a well-rounded person.
3. Remember that your kids are different people.
It’s natural to want what’s best for your children; to see them success and have fulfilling lives. But you have to remember that they are not the same as you. They have different hopes and dreams. They will be interested in different activities and hobbies, and have different skills and talents. Trying to change them will just cause you stress. If your son doesn’t enjoy baseball, he doesn’t like baseball. It’s not worth the battle to make him like it because you do. You’ll just strain the relationship.
4. Simplify your life.
Overscheduling your lives is a quick path to regular tantrums. You and I are able to bear down and push through a busy day, but our children may not have that level of self-control. When they start to feel stressed, they let us know. It isn’t necessary to get everything done in a day. The dry cleaning will be there tomorrow, it’s alright if you miss a yoga class, and the laundry will be fine in the basket for a while. Lighten your kids’ schedules, too, so they don’t feel pressured.
5. Understand you aren’t being manipulated.
It’s easy to take your child’s poor behavior. When he’s pouting the store or she’s screaming at the bank, we often feel like they’re punishing us. The truth is that young children don’t misbehave to spite you. They are testing your boundaries because that’s how they learn; they haven’t picked up the nuances of behavior yet. Every time you correct them, they learn a little more. Understand that their misunderstandings of etiquette aren’t personal.
Written by Jason Arriola, President of Cardiff Products
Jason is a father of twin boys, husband, and the inventor of the revolutionary Booster Seat Headrest, an innovative headrest for children to sleep comfortably while in the car. The first of its kind, the Booster Seat Headrest features a flexible design that allows for 14 fully adjustable settings to meet the height and comfort needs of users of all sizes. When not in use, it simply flips up for stowage completely out of the way. The padded arms of the headrest feature soft, padded fabric sleeves which are also removable and machine washable for easy cleaning. In addition they offer themed fabric prints allowing you to personalize your headrest to suit your style. Once you see your child sleeping comfortably in the car, you won’t believe you ever drove a mile without the Booster Seat Headrest!
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