Not only can stress be harmful to one’s health; it can also get in the way of parenting and make one tired, short-tempered, and unable to keep up with the tasks of everyday living. Although it is unlikely to get rid of stress completely, there are some ways of managing stress that may help. By following these suggestions, not only will the parent’s stress be reduced, but children will be happier and less stressed.
- Ask for help with household chores and child care.
- Make meal preparation and cleanup a family activity.
- Make some time for yourself to relax, read, or spend time with a friend.
- Exercise – even if it is only getting out for a walk.
- Establish a routine for your home and your children – getting children to bed at a decent hour provides parents with a couple of hours to themselves to use as needed.
- Keep a calendar for work, school, and home to avoid surprises and missing activities.
- Say NO to extra activities.
- Join a parent co-op or play group.
- Get enough sleep.
- Eat healthy and avoid skipping meals.
- Have a household budget and track spending.
- Avoid coping with alcohol or other drugs.
- Be a role model to your child as your child learns to cope with the stress in his or her life.
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