There's no doubt about it, parenting is tough. Whether you're a stay-at-home mom or a working dad, managing kids, a household and everything in between can be overwhelming. If you're feeling bogged down by the daily grind, here are some strategic ways to ease the pressure.
1. Get organized
One of the best ways to beat overwhelm is to get organized. That may sound like a no-brainer, but it's amazing how much difference being organized can make. Make a list of everything you need to do in a day, and then prioritize those tasks. Once you have a plan, it will be easier to tackle each item on your list and cross them off as you go.
Instead of thinking about all the big things you need to do, create a smaller bite-size list of things that are realistic to your daily schedule. For example, if the goal is to clean up your home office, create a list of smaller tasks you can do to get the job done.
Goal: Clean home office
De-clutter paper junk
Clear top of the desk
Remove items that don't belong in the home office
Put things where they belong
A great organizational hack that I've incorporated into my weekly schedule is preparing
my family's medication into a Pill Organizer. I make it a point to distribute and portion out medications to decrease the amount of time I spend dispensing them on a daily basis. This is another way I can determine if I didn't take or give medications as needed by just checking the compartments. This method has saved me at least 15 minutes a day which is one hour and 45 minutes a week!
When you have a system in place for your daily tasks, it's easier to stay on track and avoid letting things fall through the cracks. Plus, being organized can help you save time in the long run. So take some time to streamline your routines and create a system that works for you. You'll be glad you did when things start running more smoothly.
2. Set aside time for yourself
It's important to take some time out for yourself, even if it's just a few minutes each day. Whether you use that time to read, meditate or simply take a walk around the block, giving yourself some time to relax will help you recharge and be better able to handle whatever comes your way. Use that time to do something you enjoy, whether it's reading a book, taking a bath, or going for a walk. It may seem impossible to find time for yourself when you're constantly juggling parenting duties, but it's important to make your own well-being a priority. If you're feeling stressed and overwhelmed, chances are your kids are picking up on that. By taking a little time out for yourself, you'll be able to recharge and be a better parent.
Sometimes we as parents feel guilty if we take time for ourselves, I get it. But, we NEED to take care of ourselves so that we can care for those we love, our family. No one else can take better care of your family than you can. So, do yourself (and your family) a favor, and take some time out for YOU!
Whether it's a mental break from your daily tasks or an actual physical break from your kids, taking some time for yourself can help you recharge and refocus. If possible, take a few minutes each day to yourself, even if it's just to take a few deep breaths. And if you need a longer break, don't hesitate to ask for help from friends or family. Sometimes all you need is a little break to feel better.
it's important to take a step back and breathe. If you can, walk away from the situation for a few minutes to clear your head. Once you've had a chance to regroup, you'll be better equipped to deal with whatever is causing you stress.
3. Simplify your schedule
If you're feeling overwhelmed by your daily routines, it may be time to simplify your schedule. Take a look at your weekly calendar and see where you can cut back. Maybe there's a playdate or activity you can eliminate, or perhaps you can carpool with another parent to save time. If you can streamline your schedule, you'll have more time and energy for the things that are really important to you.
As the saying goes, keep it simple. Sometimes we need to go back to the basics and start small. We do not need to overwhelm ourselves with a million things on our to-do lists. Start with the most important items and work your way down from there. And if you find that you can’t complete everything on your list, then don’t beat yourself up about it. Just remember to keep it simple so that you don’t get overwhelmed. We all need a break every now and then, that’s why vacations were invented! But, sometimes we can’t just up and leave for the week to go relax on the beach. That’s okay, we can still find ways to relax and de-stress right where we are.
It's easy to get caught up in thinking about everything you have to do. But try to take things one day at a time. Focus on what needs to be done today, and worry about tomorrow when it comes. If you can stay present and focused on the task at hand, you'll be less likely to feel overwhelmed by everything on your plate.
One day at a time sounds much easier than it actually is. When we are faced with a lot of things that need to be done, it can be hard to just focus on one day. But, if we take it one day at a time, it won’t seem so bad. And, before you know it, all those things will be done and you can finally take a breath and relax. Just remember, tomorrow is not promised, so make today count!
4. Seek support
If you're feeling overwhelmed, seek out support from friends, family, or even a professional counselor. Talking to someone who understands what you're going through can be a huge help. Just knowing you're not alone in this parenting journey can make all the difference.
There's no shame in admitting that you need help. Whether it's hiring a babysitter so you can have some alone time, or asking a friend to watch the kids so you can run errands, don't be afraid to reach out for support. We all need a little help from time to time, and there's nothing wrong with that. I used to be the "I can handle it all by myself" mom and that only led me to exhaustion and emotional burnout. By learning to accept the things that I can handle and outsource and spend a little more on conveniences, I've been able to create balance in my life.
If you're trying to do it all, you're only setting yourself up for failure. Learn to delegate tasks to others, whether it's your spouse, a babysitter, a friend, or even your kids. And don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Chances are, people will be more than happy to lend a hand.
I've recently had carpal tunnel surgery on my dominant hand with a recovery time of 8 weeks before I can actually start using my hand prior to surgery. My husband took care of me the best way he knew how but he eventually had to go back to work. I was left with the daily chores that didn't care whether I was still recovering, it continued to pile up. Having a son with Autism hasn't prevented me from exposing him to hard work. I provided him with clear and simple instructions on what I needed him to do around the house so he can learn how to help me. It turned out that he was incredible! I created a schedule and a checklist which he happily followed and completed. I was able to take a step back, heal and get some much-needed rest while my son stepped up to help.
5. Find your motivation
When you're feeling overwhelmed, it can be tough to find the motivation to keep going. But remind yourself of why you're doing this in the first place. Whether it's for your kids, your spouse or simply because you love being a parent, finding your motivation can help you push through the tough times.
We all have our down days, but usually, we can find the strength to keep going when we think about our loved ones. So if you're feeling overwhelmed, take a step back and remember what motivates you. Use that as your fuel to keep going, even when times are tough. Because at the end of the day, your family is worth it.
Another way that I find my motivation is by journaling. The 5-second Journal by Mel Robbins is a quick way I can brain dump and get on with my day. Taking the time to jot down how I feel, what projects I have to get done, one small action step to move forward, what I'm grateful for, and a designated time to relax, has been a total game changer! I highly recommend it!
Parenting is one of the most rewarding experiences, but that doesn't mean it's always easy. If you're feeling overwhelmed, remember that you're not alone. Just take things one day at a time, delegate when you can, and find your motivation to keep going. With a little effort, you'll be back to feeling like yourself in no time.
What are some of the things you do when you're feeling overwhelmed? Share in the comments below!