Stressed working parent?
Working parents spend a lot of time juggling between their personal life and business life. We all know how stressful this can be, what we may not consider is how that stress can have real health consequences.
- Constantly trying to catch up?
- Worry that you will burn out?
- Suffering from at least one stress-related health problem.
- Problems with anxiety and depression?
Even if you have flexible or part time working hours, or help with child care, do you find that it’s still not enough to keep stress at bay?
It just seems that we all have too much to do and when there’s a lack of time we don’t factor in time to take care of ourselves.
Since you’ve become a working parent, have you experienced any of these health problems?
- unhealthy weight gain/loss
- extreme fatigue
- sleep disorders
- mood swings
- lack of time/enthusiasm to exercise
- neck and back problems
- getting sick more often
- feelings of guilt is often a contributing factor too.
When the kids get ill... the tension and strain can be overbearing. Weekends should be fun and relaxing, but it usually just involves catching up on chores with no time off.
So, what would make it better? And how can you let go of the stress and find more fulfilment and joy in your life as a working parent?
Managing the triggers that cause stress
You’ve had a bad day at work, your toddler is not cooperating, your child refuses to eat dinner. Feelings of love and pride are replaced with anger and frustration. Understand you are human and these negative feelings are normal, you are not alone! Once you begin to recognise the triggers that are causing you to become stressed then you can deal with them.
Make sure the children are in a safe place and then:
- get some fresh air
- practice breathing techniques to help calm you
- count to ten to regain focus
- relax your arms and shoulders to release tension
- phone a friend and unload
- put on your favourite music
These are just short-term solutions. If you find that you are continually stressed, then you need to address it with more long term practical changes.
Your health is so important. You need to be in the best position to look after those you love or be able to perform to your optimal level at work. Caring for yourself is the selfless thing to do. Be kind to yourself, reward yourself regularly e.g. reading, having a coffee with a friend, book a massage. Having something to look forward to helps to focus the attention away from stress.
If you are still struggling to deal with your stress, then you should contact your GP or an alternative therapy such as hypnotherapy. Stress is an extremely common condition and they will be able to help you.
As a parent you can’t remain in survival mode all the time. Help change your reality with practical solutions and make your working parent journey a more enjoyable one.