Every year we try to make New Year resolutions that we’ll stick to. We might start out with our Top 5, and then whittle it down to at least one we hope will last all year. As parents, New Year’s resolutions look a little different.
You may think things like “don’t yell as much” or “make healthier meals” top your list. But there is one important resolution parents might be overlooking. Here’s the most crucial New Year’s resolution parents should make this year — and actually stick with!
If you were a parent over these last few years, you have seen some things. Between COVID, remote learning, and remote working, the shift in the amount of responsibility and pressure on parents — working and stay-at-home — was ridiculous. And burnout is here to stay for the foreseeable future.
So, what does that mean for the kids? Well, Ohio State University released a report last spring that described “parental burnout” at a rate of 66% of working parents. What’s scary about that information is how it transfers to the children. Parents who don’t have support and feel burned out are more likely to be depressed, turn to drinking as an escape, and have more anxiety than normal.
This tends to make those parents go one of two ways. Either they lash out at their children harsher than they normally would, or they start to detach and withdraw from their children. Neither of those outcomes makes for a healthy parent-child relationship.
Thanks to some help from expert Ruth Freemon, the founder and president of Peace At Home Parenting Solutions, we have the only resolution parents need.
Learn how to remain calm
The resolution that parents need to make is to remain calm. Remain calm? During these times and conditions? Yes, that’s what’s needed, and it is possible. It won’t happen overnight or right away, but you’ll be able to reset your brain to stop being so triggered by your children when you are already overloaded with stress.
You only need 5 minutes to do it
If you think you wouldn’t be able to cram calming techniques into your already-packed day, don’t worry. All you need to train your brain to settle down is 5 minutes a day. Pick from a list of techniques to find one that best fits your life and set a timer.
Once you find that one trick that is the most calming to your brain, make sure you practice it every day. It’ll be easier on the days the kids don’t press your buttons and much needed on those days that you are over-touched and over-stimulated from time spent with the kids.
We are all still navigating this new direction life is going in. And parents, more than any others, have more ways that stress and anxiety will pop up on a daily basis. For the new year, the only resolution that should be on every parent’s list is perfecting their 5-minute calming technique! Make the commitment to yourself and your children that you’ll start the new year off in a positive direction.
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