Yesterday I talked about trying to teach how to change how we do things when we feel stressed. This could easily take up the whole month of May or longer! I hope you wrote your worry list down. Now pick a time to think about your worry list. Try to keep it several hours before bed.
Today my main focus is to try to stop anxiety before it comes through the doors into our homes. There is no rapid cure or magic pill to make anxiety go away forever. You just need to strengthen your bodies relaxation response. If you want strong muscles you need to exercise them.
I talked with my husband and we came to a decision that it is not fair to have our children absorb our troubles. They are like a sponge and they think that they should be feeling what we are feeling too. Those of us who work and come home stressed need to leave that at the door. My husband decided on those days to stop before he came into the house and listen to music or whatever helped him calm down and give his family the best of himself. When you are stressed you are not giving the best of yourself really. Stress starts with you as a tiny snowball. When you allow it to affect the next person it rolls and becomes bigger until it gets out of control and our families are all caught up in it.
I know these aren't the typical snowballs you would think of, but every year we have a snowball fight with hydrangea blossoms and they are so pretty! What would be better for our kids icy cold negative feelings or warm happy feelings that help them blossom and grow?
This year I put some hydrangea blossoms into a floating arrangement!
Stress doesn't just effect parents who work either. Parents that stay home with the kids are stressed from having to do it all alone. This got me thinking. What can we really do to leave the stress at the door when it sneaks in and out with the air with us barely noticing? Stress is due to a lack of privacy, always being needed and not fully being able to relax, or the demands of clean home, schedules, and meals. There is much more but really it feels like a full time job! For the sake of you and your kids take care of yourself and make time for what is important! These 5 exercises can help strengthen our relaxation response until it becomes more natural for you.
- Listen to our children. This is hard because as a parent we need to discipline and guide. When our children are acting out they are doing it because they don't know how to explain what is going on. Until we really listen and look what we are doing as parents to add to their behavior.
- Stay away from people that make us anxious. I know we can't stay away from our kids but we can go into our rooms for a minute and calm down
- Be present. I have been seeing this a lot on the internet. I think this one is a tough one to learn. My mind likes to wander
- Learn deep breathing and or learn mindfulness meditations. Give these a try with your kids too! Although I find it more difficult to get my boys on board with this one!
- Try to be organized and plan your days. Don't forget planning time for hobby and hubby! Girls and guys nights are important to. Your kids are not the only ones who need outlets and exercise. Schedule it, schedule it, schedule it!!
Find from this or another way to plan ahead on how you will handle stress. Having these and other quick stress relievers can help that snowball melt before it touches anyone else. Better yet build a snowman and let the stress go. This is NOT a Frozen reference, although I am sure many of you thought it right? My point mainly was to look at your stress in a different way. In addition, if you can, pick a person to be a reliable friend and listener I highly recommend it! Good luck and don't forget to breathe!