Overwhelmed with Kids? 10 Ways to Unwind
Ever have one of those days? You know, where you feel like no matter how hard you try, you simply just can’t, won’t, don’t know how to keep it together?
There comes a point in every parent’s life where there is simply too much going on. You exert all your time and energy on everyone and everything else and sometimes, it has to be your turn – it needs to be your turn! Don’t allow yourself to hit your breaking point. If you are feeling overwhelmed, try out one or all 10 of these strategies (in no particular order) to clear your head and unwind:
Talk to a friend. Go out and grab coffee with your friend, have a girls’ night, or simply pick up the phone and dish it out. Just by verbalizing the thoughts that run through your head all day will help tremendously in getting it off your chest. You’ll maintain the friendships you’ve already invested in, and you’ll be able to focus more clearly on your daily tasks. Not to mention, a little adult conversation might be exactly what the doctor ordered if the largest word you say on any given day is “Truck” or “Pwease.”
Talk to your spouse. This is such an important part of the day that can sometimes be skipped over when things get busy. Don’t just talk about the funny thing Suzy said or what godforsaken thing was in Timmy’s pants pocket today, talk about your feelings, your passions, your viewpoints, etc. A relationship is hard work, and having a child makes it tough; keep it strong and try to remind each other every day why you fell in love.
Go on a hot date. Once you feel comfortable leaving your baby with the sitter, set up a date night and stick to it! Even if you can only manage it once a month, spicing up the monotony of parenthood evenings is essential! Go to dinner, grab a movie, dance the night away (if you can stay up past 10 anymore), or simply go on a romantic walk – breaking away from the norm and spending time with your sweetie will truly help your relationship and your daily mood.
Take a hot bath/shower. Need I say more? What’s better than this after a long day!?
Exercise. The hardest part, at least for me, is deciding to work out and then gearing up to do so. But boy, once you start, it is totally therapeutic. Not only is it invigorating and emits endorphins (you know, the chemicals that make you HAPPY), you might just slim down and/or firm up a bit, causing a confidence boost. Watch out people, Sasha Fierce is on the move.
Write. Truly a cathartic experience. I am a firm believer in free writing as you will be AMAZED at the stuff that turns up on paper. Feel like you don’t have time for this? Set the clock for two minutes. TWO. And just let it flow; write about whatever is on your mind, your feelings, your ideas, etc. Even if the first couple of times simply ends up being a grocery list or a directory of errands you need to run, at least it’s out on paper and out of your head. Try it. I dare you.
Take a nap. Again, need I say more?
Spend time on a hobby. Find time out of your busy schedule to do something you have always loved to do, even if it’s just for 30 minutes. Whether it’s reading, drawing, running, scrap-booking, etc. it will truly make a difference in your attitude.
Listen to music. Pop in the headphones while the little one is asleep and listen to music, and I mean YOUR music.
Organize. Create a family schedule that is posted in plain sight for all to see. Clear the clutter off that desk. Organize the junk drawer. Make your bed. Write down lists of to-do’s. Sort mail piles. Even if you only do one “organizing” chore a day, it will make a large difference in how you feel. It is not a myth that mental clutter is directly related to the physical clutter that surrounds us.
If all else fails, never underestimate the power of a deep breath. Oh, and an occasional update on the wardrobe! That seems to help a lot too…