Being a parent can be a wonderful, rewarding experience most of the time, but for most parents, the duty at hand also fills them with feelings of anxiety and stress.
As a parent, a lot is expected of you each day, and it can be overwhelming, especially when managing young children under the age of 5 years. And if you’re feeling anxious and depressed, your kids will pick up on that and be affected as well. This makes learning how to deal with stress especially important.
So if you’re wondering how to cope with stress as a parent of kids under age 5, then read on:
Wondering How to Cope With Stress? Take a Time-Out
Raising small children can be all-consuming and exhausting, this isn’t news to you. And it can be so hard to take a shower some days let alone take time out for yourself. But to combat stress and anxiety, it’s important that you schedule a time to meet with other adults, whether that includes family members, friends, or even other parents at the park.
It becomes too easy to lose yourself in the demanding world of parenting, and before you know it, you’ve gone weeks without having a good conversation with anyone over the age of 10. So even if you have to schedule it well in advance and pay a babysitter for the break, make sure you make time for yourself and connecting with other adults.
Reduce Stress Through Acceptance
One of the most challenging aspects for parents of the toddlers is wondering if they will ever get their lives back. Toddlers require around-the-clock attention it seems, and it can get discouraging when you feel as though you will never again have the time you desire to work on a personal project, however small.
And while you’ve probably heard well-meaning elderly adults tell you to “enjoy it while you can” one too many times, there is wisdom in this advice. Children do grow fast, and if you can find it within yourself to embrace this phase of life and accept it for what it is, rest assured the free-time will come again in the future.
You will be able to take long hot showers again, go for leisurely walks, or work on writing that novel. But now you are in a phase where someone small needs you very much.
Acceptance has a big part in managing stress. By re-aligning your expectations for what you wish you were accomplishing with what’s realistic for now, you’ll find peace.
Make the Most of Routines
It often feels like your small children rule the day, and it can be difficult to make a schedule and stick to it. But if you can incorporate just a few cues that your kids will recognize, like getting them ready for a nap by reading books first and singing songs, or making a habit of going to the local park after lunchtime, your little ones will become accustomed to the routine.
Be fluid with your expectations, and if a child is having a meltdown, didn’t sleep well the night before, or is feeling ill, you might have to forgo your plans for the day. But kids appreciate having some structure. It helps them know what to expect and makes them feel more secure.
By having even just a couple of things you do each day at around the same time, things won’t be so up in the air, and you and your children will feel less stressed.
Practice Non-Violent Communication
If you’re wondering how to cope with stress when your toddler keeps hitting or biting, remember that it’s a natural reaction for children this young to use physical methods for showing their needs. Non-violent communication is a learned skill, whereas hitting, biting, or throwing is instinct.
You might feel like a broken record telling your children a dozen times a day not to hit. But by practicing patience and consistency, you’ll reduce stress in your household when children are able to express their needs without physically acting out.
Seek Out Professional Help
Tips for dealing with stress can be helpful, but sometimes the stress requires professional help. And that’s ok. Be honest with yourself and your limits and if you feel like you would benefit from professional help in dealing with stress or anxiety, then, by all means, seek it!
You might find that visiting a therapist to discuss your feelings of overwhelm does the trick. Or a doctor that can prescribe you medication for your anxiety. Or you might find that you gain the coping frame of mind that you need with the help of an experienced hypnotist.
Perhaps a combination of resources will assist you in feeling more capable of dealing with the stress that so many parents feel as they navigate through this demanding time of life.
Discover Our Stress Management Program
Find help from our team that knows all about how to cope with stress, whether it’s related to parenting, work, your marriage, or any other area of your life.
Hypnotherapy can provide you with the mental and emotional tools that you need to tackle the anxiety that so many of us feel on a daily basis.
We invite you to contact us to schedule a free consultation so you can ask any questions you have and learn more about how we can be of service to you. We look forward to hearing from you!