Parenting 101: How to Prevent Burnout

Parenting 101: How to Prevent Burnout

I’m sure you don’t have to imagine this, but you just worked 40 hours, spent a ton of time cleaning the house and catching up on laundry, and the kids are miserable. All you want to do is sit and relax, but sometimes as mamas, we don’t get that chance. The downfall is that we leave ourselves open to burnout. I know that I push myself toward burnout on a regular basis.

Never giving yourself a chance to rest and recharge is a guaranteed way to end up with parental burnout. But Tilda from Open Educators is here to give all of us mamas some tips to prevent the parental burnout that causes us to be the crabby mama.

Never giving yourself a chance to rest and recharge is a guaranteed way to end up with parental burnout. But Tilda from Open Educators is here to give all of us mamas some tips to prevent the parental burnout that causes us to be the crabby mama.

Never giving yourself a chance to rest and recharge is a guaranteed way to end up with parental burnout. But Tilda from Open Educators is here to give all of us mamas some tips to prevent the parental burnout that causes us to be the crabby mama.

Being a parent is an awesome responsibility that is rewarding. However, rewarding experiences don’t come for free — you have to work for them. When it comes to being a parent, the work is never done. Juggling schedules, balancing finances and dealing with mood swings can take their toll on you. For some parents, it takes all their strength and available effort to not burn out.

 

There are three major warning signs of burnout:

  •     Feelings of resentment, frustration, and cynicism.
  •     Exhaustion that causes you to withdrawal and emotionally detach yourself from your children.
  •     A feeling of hopelessness that makes it seem like nothing you do will ever be good enough.

 

Below we’ve outlined some of our favorite strategies for parents to deal with stress in a healthy manner and prevent burnout.

 

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Create a Stress-Free Home Environment

OK, so it may be impossible to make any place “stress-free.” Even the calmest day spa probably has scheduling conflicts every once and a while. However, you can cut down on stress around the home by staying on top of the organization and creating routines to keep the kids in line. Make sure eating well and exercise are top priorities for your kids. Have a family dinner each night where everyone can catch up and bond. Afterward, take the kids on a stroll around the neighborhood where they can burn off excess energy and enjoy the outdoors.

As a parent, it’s also important you have a space in the home where you can escape for alone time and peace. Making time for yourself when you have kids at home may feel selfish, but it’s actually important for your children’s well-being. When you are happy, centered and relaxed, you are better able to complete your duties as a parent. Practicing self-care is also a great example for the little ones.

 

Socialize with Other Parents

Community plays a huge role in our overall health. Creating a community with other parents helps when you need to spend time around those with similar interests — those interests being your kids. Get to know the parents at your kid’s daycare and school and plan parties or other social gatherings such as a game night where you can get to know each other. There you can vent about frustrations, laugh about the silly things children do and bond over the shared joys of parenting. It makes it a lot easier when you know others are going through similar situations.

 

Focus on the Good

It can be easy to get bogged down in the negatives, especially on a hard day. But when you catch yourself feeling like everything is going wrong, make a concerted effort to focus on what’s going right. For instance, say your partner is having to work extra hours, leaving you at home to care for the kids yourself. Instead of focusing on feelings of abandonment, try and remember that the extra hours will help pay off debt or buy better Christmas gifts. Chances are your partner would rather be at home with you and the kids, anyway.

 

Quit Comparing Yourself to Parents Online

The popularity of perfect parenting blogs and accounts on social media project this idea of what an ideal home should look like. All of us fall short of that ideal. Just as nobody on television looks as good in real life as they do with all the makeup, wardrobe, lighting and retouching, no home is as looks as good as the images online that rely heavily on editing and filters. It’s fine to look at this media if you want to indulge in eye candy, but don’t rely on it to give you an image of real life.

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Parenting is incredibly rewarding, but you have to work for it. Sometimes the stresses of parenthood can lead to burnout. Creating routines, setting aside an area for yourself and socializing with parents are all ways to prevent and release your stress as a parent. Finally, it’s important to keep a clear perspective and focus on the good while avoiding comparisons to photoshopped images that saturate social media.

 

Again, a huge thanks to Tilda for bringing us some great ideas to prevent mama burnout. Be sure to check out Open Educators for more resources to help us as parents.

Tilda Moore

Tilda Moore researches and writes about educational resources for Open Educators. She is passionate about helping parents and teachers in providing kids with the best education possible. She works directly with teachers and other public education groups to ensure they are working toward our vision of constructing a reliable database of verified information.

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