Stress Prevention for Parents

By: Francesca | stress, stress prevention
When it comes to stress (and a lot of other things), prevention is better than cure. Parenting can be a very stressful experience, especially at the beginning, but the good news is, it can be prevented. This article will highlight the best ways to pave a stress-free parenting lifestyle. Be sure to do these tips early, and do them often. Your mind and body (plus your kids) will thank you for it.

Have some time for yourself â€" “Me time” is crucial in parenting. Be sure to spend some time on your own, even if it’s just a few hours each week. Use this time to relax and focus completely on yourself. Have coffee with friends, or go on a date with your spouse. Don’t think of it as being selfish. Having time for yourself will make you less prone to stress, which in turn will allow you to take even better care of your kids.

Wake up early â€" Avoid the morning rush and haggardness by waking up early each morning. Of course, this also means that you’ll have to sleep early, so it’s best to schedule your bed time close to your children’s bed time as well. Being up early will give you a head start on the tasks that you need to complete on that day. You can also use this time to get stuff that doesn’t involve your kids out of the way, so that you can focus on them when they get up.

Plan ahead â€" Map out the details of tomorrow today, so that things will run smoothly the next day. Create a check list of the things that you need to do and try to stick to it. This will allow you to be more efficient and be less prone to distractions. While it’s true that having kids can ruin even the best laid out plans, having one is better than waking up without any idea of what to do.

Befriend other parents â€" A task becomes easier if you know that you’re not going through it alone. Make friends with other parents and take the time to socialize with them. You can even compare notes and exchange tips on how to become parents. You have the option of bringing your kids and introducing them to other families to help them make friends early on, but from time to time, feel free to just go out as adults.

Exercise â€" Getting about 30 minutes of exercise will benefit you at a physical, mental, and emotional level. It will give you more energy and it’ll also keep you physically fit. Another important benefit of exercise is that it allows you to clear your mind, especially if you get “in the zone”. This allows your brain to re-charge and will lessen the possibilities of stress.

Ask for help â€" Trying to do everything, all the time is a surefire way to stress yourself out. Parenting is overwhelming and attempting to do it all on your own is a big no-no. Be sure to ask for help from your spouse, relatives, or friends when you feel like things are getting too hectic.

Image credit: bottled_void on Flickr

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