Being a parent is basically a surefire way to live your life on the edge of a mental breakdown. That’s what it feels like. You love your children so-so much that you are left in a constant state of anxiety hoping that they are okay and that nothing bad will happen to them. So how can we as parents stop being a worry-all-the-time parent? I have some tips for you that will hopefully help you relax and just enjoy your kids as they grow.
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When you are pregnant, you are over-worried about lots of things. You worry about your diet, staying away from people who are smoking and what every twitch in your belly means. Then your child is finally born you are worried about even more things. You worry about how much milk they should be having, whether your milk is okay and the color of their poop. As they get older you worry about the fact that your toddler has just tripped over and landed on his precious knees. It’s a life of no sleep.
As they go off to preschool, we begin to worry about whether or not they are developing normally. We begin to ask ourselves if they are where their peers are. If they are behind their peers we begin to worry even more.
This is a bit of an issue, not just for your health (obviously) but because kids have an incredible way of picking up our patterns. This means our anxieties could be rubbing off on them. As such, we’ve pulled together a few ways you can start to worry less and smile more.
Stop Sweating The Little Things
When you are a parent, it’s the little things that seem to get to you the most. It’s trying to leave the house so that your little ones aren’t late for preschool or daycare. You’re hoping that you are not late for work again, all while they are being kids. In this instance, the best thing you can do is stop worrying about the fact another glass of milk has been spilled. Yes, maybe another tile has been colored in with crayon and cereal has been trod into the carpet. Messes get cleaned and life goes on, but getting stressed can have a lasting impact.
Teach Them Independence
If you want to stop worrying about things like how much stuff is on your to-do list, or how dependent your kids are on you, then teach them how to be more independent. This is something that can be done at any age. Teach them how to wash their dishes, how to put their clothes in the laundry and how to fold clothes. Accept you can’t stop them climbing trees and jumping off sofas, so teach them how to do it safely instead. Teach them how to cross the road safely because, as Hasner Law points out, pedestrians are no match for a metal car. The more you can teach them how to be independent and safe the less you will have to worry about. It’s that simple.
No Parent Is In Control
It’s easy when they are younger. This is when they ate what you cooked them, listened to what you said and smiled when they were woken up. But then your kid develops their own personality. He starts saying he doesn’t like the food he has always loved, wants to watch your phone all the time and doesn’t want to go to bed when you say. This can be infuriating. And, not just because you are the boss here, but because you know how important it is they eat right, watch less TV, and sleep for the appropriate length of time. You need to accept you can’t control everything and the sooner you accept this the sooner you will be a calmer, more relaxed parent. After all, kids will be kids.
Focus On The Positives
Bad things happen all the time, some big and some small. But whatever it is, it doesn’t have to ruin the rest of your week. It could be bad grades at school or it could be your kid learned about stinging nettles the hard way. Either way, don’t let this eat you up. Instead, focus on the positives. Don’t focus on the fact your kid isn’t great at math. Instead, focus on the fact they are great at creating things. Don’t beat yourself up for not being there to protect your kid from the nettle. Focus on the fact you aided them quick and they were brave. These will help you out big time.
As parents, it is very easy to fall into the worry trap. Suddenly we think that our children have something terribly wrong with them, when they are simply being kids. Use these tips to help you stop being a worry-all-the-time parent, so you can relax and enjoy them.