Most stress comes from the expectations we hold of our children and ourselves. Often we are parenting the child we want, rather than the child we have. The more you can accept your child and focus on what this child is experiencing, your stress will decrease. Another major cause of stress is thinking it is your job to make your child happy. That is impossible. You are responsible for what you do and say but you are not responsible for your child's feelings and even behavior. If you are responsible, then every time your child is unhappy, it means you have failed. Releasing this burden and allowing your child his own emotional life will reduce a lot of stress.
A Answers (4)
Bonnie Harris, Pediatrics, answered
Heather Wittenberg, PhD, Psychology, answeredIt's all about BALANCE. Some parents find parenting stressful because they focus too much on their kids -- so the parents are paying the price. Others find it stressful because they don't focus ENOUGH on their kids -- so the kids are paying the price. Either way, it's stressful, because someone is suffering.
It's easy to lose focus when there are so many things competing for our attention. We feel torn in too many directions. Stay focused on essential, basic needs -- everyone needs sleep, healthy food, family time, work time, exercise, and fun time. Learn to say NO to non-essential extras -- and say YES to things that "refill your tank". In this way, you'll also be setting a good example for your kids on how to live a balanced life.
Mia Redrick, , answeredLet's face it. Being a parent is the hardest job in the world. We all need tools to make parenting less stressful. When we are less stressed, we become a better parent who is more engaged and not resentful.
In my book, Time for Mom-Me: Five Essential Strategies for a Mother's Self-Care, one of the tools I recommend is to DIPP. DIPP stands for delegate, incorporate others, plan, purge.
To delegate, find things you can assign to you family members, like one or two of the daily chores. You don't have to do everything, and delegating will teach your kids responsibility. Incorporating others involves increasing your network through family sharing activities like carpooling to school or taking turns watching the kids so that one of the couples in your sharing group can go out together.
Planning ahead is as simple as taking out the calendar the night before and figuring out what you need to get done. Plan everything ahead of time so you're not spending the next day putting out fires. Figure out where you're going to be spending most of your time the next day and create a schedule for all of it.
Finally, purging requires you to get rid of all the things you don't need to do. Think about all of the activities you help others with and figure out one or two of them that you can drop. Limit the number of extracurricular activities your children take part in. I never ask my children if they want to take part in anything at school because if they really want to participate in something, they will tell me about it and already be aware of everything they need to do in order to get involved.
Michele Borba, Psychology, answeredHere are a few important secrets that will make parenting less stressful and help our kids act the way we want.
1. Are learned: The most important discipline secret is this: behavior is learned. Think about it: kids are not born obnoxious, rude, defiant, bossy, or selfish.
2. Can be changed. If behavior is learned it means bad behaviors can be unlearned. Most behaviors can be changed by using the proven research-based techniques I'll share.
3. Need intervention. Do not expect your kid to change on their own or is just a phase he will outgrow. His behavior will most likely only get worse without your intervention. It will be even tougher to change.
4. Take time to change. Give you and your kid time. Remember, new behavior habits generally take a minimum of 21-days of repetition. So hang in there!
5. Require commitment. Long-term commitment is necessary for any meaningful and permanent change. There is no getting around it: parenting is tough work.
6. Must have a substitute. Think about it: if you tell your kid to stop doing one behavior, what will he do instead? Without a substitute behavior, chances are he'll revert to using the old misbehavior. I'll give you those substitutes.
7. Require a good example. Behaviors are learned best by seeing it done right. So make sure your behaviors or examples you provide are ones that you want your kid to emulate.
8. Benefit from encouragement. Encourage every step along the way. Behavior change is hard and deserves to be encouraged, acknowledged and celebrated.
9. Are never too late to change. Even if the problem has been going on a long time, do not despair. Help is on the way.
Find out more about this book:The Big Book of Parenting Solutions: 101 Answers to Your Everyday Challenges and Wildest Worries