How familiar is this scene?
At which point did you lose your cool and start screaming about how unfair life is and what did you do to deserve all this? How many of these scenarios sound like a mirror of your everyday life?
Don’t despair about the way these episodes make you feel! Mums of older children will probably say, “It’ll get better… in about 18 years!” When we talk about life balance, finding a way to cope with the pressures of motherhood is so important. So, how can you keep your cool and enjoy your life as a mum?
It wasn’t on purpose
The things that go wrong during the course of a day are rarely done on purpose. If you have young children it is likely that you’re in for a demanding time but this is because of their curiosity to understand how the world works. Try to encourage them to play in a more constructive manner and make boundaries clear. Try not to explode when things go wrong, as you wouldn’t want to set this as an example to your child. Repeat your expectations and boundaries regularly so children can grasp what is appropriate behaviour and what isn’t.
If you’re trying to rush to an appointment and have to get your young children ready, try to remember that they don’t have any real sense of time until they are much older. If you have a scheduled appointment, try to organise everything the night before so you don’t put yourself under additional pressure. Allow yourself plenty of time to get to appointments in case something goes wrong. Having time on your side will help you to put things right if required.
If you want your children to be confident, happy people, you must nurture their self-esteem. Even if you feel they play up for the majority of the time, try to remember to compliment their good behaviour. Rewarding appropriate behaviour will encourage and motivate them to behave in a more positive manner. This can be difficult when you’re having a challenging day but it will help you all to stay on the right track.
Looking after children can be exhausting and demanding. Try to break the time you spend down into chunks of time during which you complete different activities. Children enjoy variety as well as structure. Spend some time doing different things such as puzzles, messy play, free play, snack time and reading. If you’ve had a busy day, a small amount of television together will help to relax and wind down. Don’t try to do too much as you will both get fraught – have the activities ready and follow the mood of the day. Don’t forget to get out in the fresh air, even if it is raining, as this will give you all a change of scene.
These days everyone seems to be rushing around. Try to slow the pace of your life down so you actually enjoy your time. If you continually run around trying to fit in as much as possible, you will soon run out of steam. Take care of yourself when you are caring for others and you will start to enjoy a happier and more satisfying life.
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