Becoming a parent will, undoubtedly, change your life. Raising your children can certainly be a joyful experience, but it can also be a great source of stress for both parents. Common advice to deal with stress is finding time to “get away from it all.” However, that is not always feasible considering parenting is a full-time job. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to alleviate that tension that actually involve your children and are so much easier, and cheaper, to do than getting away. You may even form a deeper relationship with your kids while simultaneously reducing your stress levels. Sounds like a win-win for everyone.
As your child learns to walk, you will begin spending most of your time chasing them around as they attempt to burn off their boundless energy. Use this to your advantage by taking them to a safe place, like a park, and join in on the fun. Exercise is a proven-stress reliever, so go ahead and play that game of tag. That is way more fun than getting on a treadmill with sweaty people all around you.
Be a kid again by engaging in finger painting with your little artist. Expressing their creativity and flexing their imagination is great for their mental and physical development. So now you can destress for awhile knowing that you are also doing something that benefits your kids.
Another wonderful stress-reducer is music. Of course, you may consider listening to something mellow and peaceful, but if you want to engross your kids in the activity, find something upbeat that encourages dancing. To this end, a good friend of mine told me about Baby Bear’s Music. They have a collection of personalized CD’s that incorporate your child’s name into the songs so they can enjoy them more. If you are unable to find your child’s name in the list of over 13,000, they do offer Custom Name CD’s, too. We chose the Friendly Songs Collection because of the song Dinosaur Shuffle. Ethan loves dinosaur-everything and figured he would enjoy hearing his name and dinosaur in the same sentence.
We encounter stress on a daily basis and there really is no way around that. How you choose to deal with it, however, is absolutely up to you. You could continue to let the tension build up and take it out on your children. Or you could interact with them doing stress-relieving activities and form a stronger bond at the same time.