How Not to Sweat the Small Stuff
People aren’t kidding on when they say being a mom is the hardest thing you can do. And it’s not the sleepless nights, the constant need to be ‘on,’ whether you’re preparing yourself for sudden questions about what happens when we die, or an equally explosive bout of diarrhea, or how suddenly your entire life’s priorities have completely changed. We mean, whilst it is definitely all those things, it’s also the responsibility of having a little piece of your heart running about loose in the world. Well, here we’ve thought about the things you can just let go, giving you more time and energy to focus on having the best time with your kids as they grow up.
Reduce Your Stress
Easier said than done, right? But one of the most important things you can do as a parent is try not to stress. If your anxiety levels are high, this is going to be picked up by your kids and they will sense that you’re worrying. By trying to keep yourself zen, everyone in your home will have a happier and healthier time of it. Worrying is a sign that you care, and that’s important, but if it’s having a negative impact on your day-to-day life then it might be time to reconsider how much anxiety you’re giving yourself.
Respect the Kids’ Clocks
This tactic might involve some deep breathing on your part, but understanding that, when your kid ignores you the first seven (or seven thousand) times you tell them to brush their teeth, they might not be defying you. Instead, know that they’ve heard the request, but have placed it on their internal list of priorities to be dealt with after building this Transformer, or bothering the cat. They will respond, just maybe not in the timeframe we expect. Repeating the request means that it’s actually less likely to get a response, because then your asking just becomes white noise to them and disappears into the background.
Try and Get off Your Helicopter
It seems like the modern approach to parenting is to stand on the side-lines of everything they do, either cheering your kids on or offering what we think are constructive suggestions. Actually, your kids need the space to play and explore by themselves. They won’t experiment and learn if you are hypervigilant and constantly hovering over them. Stop trying to overeducate and just get out of their way – it’s rare that a mess they make will be irreversible.
Enjoy the Moment
It can be one of the hardest things to push down the anxiety that they’ll be lost, hurt or getting bullied. But, in actual fact, these things are rare occurrences. Obviously if your house is falling down around you, call the roofers. But, generally speaking, if you are relaxed, your kids will be relaxed and are more likely to come to you if they have difficulties than if you are constantly hovering over them. So try and enjoy the moments you have with them. Believe us when we say they’ll feel like too few.