Parents are always looking for advice on how to survive parenthood without going crazy!
This is one of the hardest things to navigate. But, it's also one of the most important and rewarding things you will do in this life. This article will walk you through how to survive parenthood without going crazy, including helpful tips on maintaining your sanity while still having a social life and maintaining balance in your life.
When it comes to parenting advice for surviving parenthood without going crazy, here is what I have learned:
Stop comparing yourself to other people. Other parents are doing the best they can. Take a deep breath. You got this. Throw out your expectations of what you think parenting should look like and focus on what is realistic for your family's life right now. It will only make you crazy if you let it. Remember, "normal" is a relative term when it comes to parenting.
When it comes to parenting advice for surviving parenthood without going crazy, dealing with criticism from family and friends is definitely a challenge. If you let it get to you, you will go insane. Take a deep breath. You got this!
As the mum of three girls who are now eighteen, seventeen and twelve, I understand how difficult it can be to navigate parenting. I have had my fair share of criticism from family and friends over the years.
People who aren't parents seem to think that I should be able to control my girls with their words alone.
People who are parents think that I am a permissive parent because I let my children make choices for themselves and don't just tell them what to do all the time. I have even had people tell me that if I didn't control my children's every move, they wouldn't be able to function in society.
At times it can be difficult not to take this criticism personally, but I quickly remind myself that these people are just projecting their own issues onto my family and me. I then take a deep breath and let it all go.
So, for those of you struggling with similar criticism from family and friends, here is my advice on how to survive parenthood without going crazy: Take a deep breath. You got this!
I try not to engage in arguments about what parents should or should not do because it is so subjective, and there is no set of rules that apply to all. The same goes for what children should or should not do. It's like arguing about politics!
I also remind myself that I am doing the best I can with what I have at the time, with who I have at the time (because they are constantly changing as they grow and develop), in the situation I have at the time.
My advice for surviving parenthood without going crazy is: Focus on what you CAN do now, with who you have right now, at this moment. Start there. And be kind to yourself along the way because it won't always feel like "surviving". Sometimes it will feel like you're "thriving", but most of the time, it's just about getting through.
Just because you are a parent doesn't mean that your needs matter less. In fact, it should be the opposite: Taking care of yourself is an important part of taking care of your child. So don't get caught up in thinking you are selfish for putting yourself first sometimes. You don't have to justify it; just do it. Give yourself 10 minutes for self-care
The truth is, if you don't find time to recharge your own batteries every now and then, you will go crazy. You won't be able to function because you'll be too tired or stressed out. So take some time each week for yourself. Whether it's an hour a day or once a month, you must do it.
I try to go on a date with my husband at least once a month, even if it's just grabbing coffee and sitting and talking for an hour. It feels good to have an adult conversation (and not talk about the girls or the best way to keep our daughters from killing each other). Sometimes I just take a walk by myself or meet up with friends.
It doesn't have to be anything big, but it's important to take care of yourself and make sure you are happy too!
Let Someone Else Do Some Of The Work.
Have you read my blog post 6 reasons why date night is important?
As a parent, you need support from people who get it. If you don't have anyone in your life to talk with or vent to, then go ahead and seek out a parenting support group. Find someone who has gone through what you're going through and can relate. They'll be able to offer direction, parenting advice, tips, encouragement, stories of their own (that won't make you feel like you're the only one with a crazy child), and validation. Of course, it's easier said than done, but especially in the beginning of parenting, you will need someone.
Ask for help. Take advantage of other people who are kind enough to offer assistance. For example, let your parents babysit when they're available or get a sitter so that you can have a cup of coffee with friends.
Surround Yourself With People Who Make You Happy.
Too often, I hear parents talking about how they aren't good enough, their child's not good enough, and parenting, in general, isn't as rewarding as it should be. RELAX! If you are beating yourself up because you are thinking these negative thoughts over and over again, that means you're taking a break from being positive. Be positive about your parenting. Believe me, I know it's hard sometimes, but try to remember all the good things you do and say instead of focusing on what you think is going wrong.
Instead of saying how bad a parent you are or how frustrating your child can be on a daily basis, try thinking more positively. The positive thoughts will really help you become a better parent.
Don't be defined by your stresses or mistakes, but rather focus on what is lovely in your life. For example, if your child is thriving, happy, learning new things and growing as a person, then that should be enough reason to look at parenting differently.
It's hard not to lose your cool when your child has a tantrum. That said, that doesn't mean you have to scream at them or roll around on the floor with them either. Instead, take deep breaths to calm yourself down and remember it's okay for little ones to feel frustrated and angry sometimes. So keep talking to them calmly and use a soothing tone of voice. Be sure they know you are on their side instead of your child feeling like they have to fight against you.
Give Your Child Time and Space
When my daughter is upset, I give her time to calm down by herself. This means that I don't react right away when she has a tantrum ( she is 12 and still has epic tantrums). I try to remember that my actions will impact how she feels, so if I jump in and yell too quickly, she'll only feel provoked or scared and like things are worse than they actually are. So instead of reacting immediately, let your child have time and space to calm down by themselves before you respond.
Sometimes parenting requires you to say "No" and stand your ground, regardless of whether or not they throw a tantrum. I used to let my daughter do whatever she wanted. However, that didn't turn out too well for either of us because it created terrible habits in her communication skills. So when she would get irritated at something, I wouldn't budge. I didn't care if she threw a fit or cried her eyes out. I stood there, stoic as a statue, until she calmed down and stopped whining like a baby to get her way.
Don't Reward Your Child For Having A Tantrum By Giving Them What They Want.
When you give your child what they want just because they throw a tantrum, you're teaching them that if you don't get your way, just throw a fit until someone gives in. It's not fair to the child, and it's unfair to you as the parent too. Just imagine how many times you've broken down and given into your kid when they begged for something only to regret it later.
Don't Yell At Your Child When You're Angry.
When you yell at your child when you're angry, they can feel scared and frightened by the way you are reacting to them. If you need to take a few minutes or even hours to cool down before yelling or punishing them in any way, then do it. Keep Your Voice Under Control
Try to keep your voice under control when you're disciplining your child, no matter how upset they make you or angry you get at them. Don't Yell or Scream. It's not good for you, and it's not good for them either. Be a Role Model When It Comes To Expressing Your Anger
I used to get furious at my daughters when they were younger, but then I realized that if I wanted them to grow up being able to express their feelings in a healthy manner, I needed to be a good role model. So instead of throwing tantrums when they were younger, I did yoga or exercised hard instead. Sometimes even taking a shower helped too.
If You're Already Angry And Frustrated With Life When You Get Home, Take A Few Minutes To Calm Down Before Talking To Your Child
If you walk in the door all riled up and angry, take a few minutes to de-escalate before trying to talk to your kids. Take a hot bath, go for a jog or listen to some soothing music until you're able to keep yourself from getting extremely frustrated with them. Your actions will impact how they feel, and if you act like you're ready to kill them, they'll only get more upset and feel even worse.
It's a good idea to set some rules for them when growing up that you feel would help reinforce discipline and respect within the family structure. It doesn't have to be a surprise if you talk to them about what you expect from them. Ensure that there is a good balance between freedom and rules so that they don't feel suffocated.
It's not all about you and what you want as parents. It can be easy to think that the world revolves around us, but we learn that isn't true as we mature. We can't always get what we want when we want it; much to the contrary, our children will likely give us more than we could ever expect or ask for.
Accept the things you cannot change. You're not a magician, so there are some things you cannot change no matter how hard you try. Letting go and accepting the things we cannot change is an excellent lesson to teach our children. They can't always get their way, and when they don't, you must be there to calm them down until they learn how to accept what they cannot change. It's not about telling them "no" all of the time. But, sometimes, they do need to hear it so that your relationship can grow stronger. It will make them more aware and hopefully teach them a lesson as well.
You can encourage independence in your children by giving them tasks around the house and letting them help you. You could also let them try different cooking or baking things to start to feel self-reliant.
Feelings are a big part of being human, and we must understand how our actions affect others. Unfortunately, many of us have been raised to believe that we should not express our feelings or just bottle them up. Letting your kids see a side of you where you are honest and open will make them feel more drawn to you since they trust you.
It is okay to be strict, especially when it comes to issues such as safety. However, if you are not open-minded about trying new things like a new activity or food, your child may feel that they are being forced to do something they don't want to do and will shut down. Therefore, you must let them know from the start that you're willing to try new things with them.
Avoid Arguing and Being Intimidating
This may seem like an odd tip, but you must allow your children to have their own opinions and way of doing things. Of course, if what they're doing is dangerous or illegal, those rules still apply, but if they want to do something out of the ordinary, you should allow them that freedom. Having an open mind will help them feel less threatened and more comfortable with what is going on. This will also strengthen your relationship because they won't be afraid to approach you if something bothers them. It's better for everyone involved when there are fewer fights and an open line of communication between everyone.
Don't Do Everything For Them: Let them do things for themselves.
It's a good idea to help your child with projects around the house or by helping do their chores, but sometimes it can be too much. If you are doing everything for your kids, it may be time to make them do some things independently. Most of the time, they are more than capable and will feel better once they learn how to do these tasks independently.
Letting your children help out around the house allows them to feel that they are contributing in a positive way toward everyone's happiness. Encourage independence in your children by giving them tasks around the house and letting them help you.
Encourage Independence in Your Children by Giving Them Tasks.
The school holidays are a time of fun and excitement for parents and children alike. However, it can also be difficult when the kids have too much energy to handle or become bored from not having any extracurricular activities. Here are some tips for surviving the school holidays with your children:
1. Plan things well in advance. One of the best ways to get through school holidays is to plan activities in advance. Many people underestimate how much time it will take to prepare a certain activity and end up with less fun for everyone involved than they'd expected. Plan trips, parties and other events well in advance so that you'll have plenty of time to make arrangements for child care or to get things ready.
2. Prepare for the changes in your schedule It's natural during school holidays that you'll have more free time than before, and this can be a challenge if you're not used to having so much free time on your hands. If your children are at home, it will be easy for them to fill their days with fun activities to do. If you're not sure what to do, read a book or play outdoors with your children.
3. Take breaks and keep things in perspective during the holidays. There's no reason that you should stay inside the whole time that the kids are on holiday from school. Instead, make sure that you take breaks when they're asleep so that you're not constantly doing activities with your children and don't spoil them. It's also easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of everything you do during the holidays, making sure that you take time to relax when necessary.
4. Allow for plenty of downtime. If your kids are at home from school, you can take them with you when going to the supermarket or running errands. Your children need to develop independence so that they don't grow up too dependent on their parents and do things by themselves.
The community of parents in these online groups is excellent for making friends online and meeting mums from your local area.
Finally, take time to laugh - it will help you get through your days and make the craziness more bearable.
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