Rid Yourself of the Stress of Being a Parent
The Stress Builds
Just because you are stressed out and irritable does not mean you are a bad parent. It means that you are a hands on, over worked, unappreciated ball of parental stress. This is normal, especially when you have multiple children or toddlers. Those who say they are not stressed and they have kids, you know they are lying.
Myself, I have a 13 year old girl and twin toddler boys. Yes, my stress level is extremely high. Now throw in the fact I homeschool my kids and work from home as well, it is amazing that I am not crying on a daily basis. lol (FYI: I don't.)
The first step in redeeming your sanity is to realize that you are normal for getting stressed. This will help the feelings of guilt that you have when you are irritable. Face it, we all feel it. We get stressed, then we get even more stressed cause we are allowing ourselves to be stressed. It is a never ending cycle if you allow it to be.
Take Some Mommy Time
When you are a new parent, you find it hard to believe that you need Mommy Time. You will soon find out that if you do not allow yourself to have time for your own activities, it will become impossible to rid yourself of the stress being a parent brings on. Do not get me wrong though, these little bundles of get-into-everything are quite fun, cuddly, and enjoyable. Us as parents would never have it any other way. But seriously, de-stressing is as important as picking up next weeks worth of diapers and wet wipes. Get someone to watch your child or children for a few hours a week to go do something you want or to run errands alone. You need this.
I know, we are ALL guilty of giving into that tantrum for a tasty treat or a new shiny toy, but this actually makes it worse on us. I am totally guilty of this. However, when we give into their tantrums they will soon come to think that they can have anything they want as long as they scratch loud and long enough to get you to bend. One of my twins has turned this into an art form. In order to correct this problem (as I am doing now), it is said by all the lovely professionals to stand firm and ignore them. They will learn that they cannot have their way when you say no. The first week is the hardest and my suggestion is to buy ear plugs, you are going to need them.
Yoga Is Not Just for the Flexible
We have all heard the hype behind yoga. I have actually done this (before kids), and it does lower stress. However, it can be hard to find the time to do it; even if it is just an hour. I am supplying you with a video that you can do in order to lower your stress with yoga at home. This video is only 20 minutes long; however, you will need to wake up and drink your morning go-go juice AKA coffee.
If it is hard for you to find time, and I definitely understand, then try to get up an hour early to perform this ancient art of relaxation. (We all know doing it before bed will be impossible; children suck the energy right out of you.)
Yoga for Beginners
It is a great idea to pick up an old hobby or find a new one. Personally I have decided to pick up my paint brushes again. Painting with music for my noisy background instead of screaming kids provides me down time that I would not normally have. Other hobbies can include model cars, molding, drawing, and anything else that requires you to breathe and reflect on your creations.
Personal Get Away
If you have a partner, then they are probably feeling the effects as well. You have to think, not only do they have the same stress of being a parent (at times in different ways), but they have to deal with your irritability as well. It is a good idea to drop your kids off with a grandparent and get away. The get away can even be just a couple hours while you do errands, have dinner, or seen a movie (and ignore it). It all depends on what you would like to do. Personally, my other half and I like to go out to dinner so we can have some intimate time and eat a meal that I do not have to prepare.
No matter which way you choose to go, remember that your child will feel the stress. You are not only de-stressing to keep yourself sane, but to keep a well balanced and healthy home. If you are not smiling, chances are your kids are not either. Never feel selfish about taking time out for yourself, because you are doing it for your children too.