Nelson Leader : August 22nd 2013
28 THE NELSON LEADER, AUGUST 22, 2013 PARENTING Yellow Pages House, 2nd floor, 190 Trafalgar Street, Nelson 7010 M 021 105 3729 E email@example.com Tel 03 539 0210 i Fax 03 539 0215 i www.hflaw.co.nz Hamish.Fletcher Lawyers Is that we hit targeted time frames Our point of difference at Heather Murray - Estates, Wills and Trusts Hamish.Fletcher Lawyers 5518502AB Parenting with Brenda Holdaway Reducing parenthood stress Count to 10: There is no one-size-fits-all solution to managing stress. Being a parent can be very stressful and it is import- ant to avoid the stress as much as possible. How- ever there will be times when you become very stressed, so today I am writing about some ideas to help reduce the stress in your life. Although stress is unavoidable, it is handy to have some strategies to use to firstly, try to eliminate stress as much as possible, and secondly, to use when you are stressed. The simple realisation that we are in control of our lives is the foun- dation of stress manage- ment. Managing stress is all about taking charge: of our thoughts, emotions, schedule, and the way we deal with problems. So as adults we need to accept that we are responsible for whatever stress we may have and that we are the only ones that can deal with it. Many parents fall into the trap of trying to do everything for others and not looking after themselves, but we need to start taking care of our- selves more and accepting that we are the only one that can do things about our own personal wellbeing. To try to eliminate stress from your life as much as possible be as organised as you can. Have a good system in place for ensuring that you keep to the schedule that you set. Set a good routine and stick to it. If you normally get dinner organ- ised early in the day, then keep doing that. If children have to be at set places by set times, make sure you leave enough time to get them to those places. Try not to commit yourself to too many other tasks, such as volun- teering for things. Although it is important for your own wellbeing, and for children to see you involved in community work, don't over- commit yourself to these things. It is important to say no to people if you are asked to do something and you don't think you have the time for it. Saying no is difficult but important. So even though you do all the above things, there will be times when you still get stressed. There are things you can do to help reduce the stress levels. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to managing it as no single method works for everyone, so you may need to experiment with different strategies to find what works best for you. Focus on what makes you feel calm and in control. There will be healthy things that you can do that make you feel good, such as exercise and sitting reading. It is important to look after your- self at all times, especially when you are a parent, so treasure the good things in life, such as your relation- ships. Avoid unnecessary conflict so don't get all argumentative. If you don't agree and something is stressing you out -- it is easier to walk away and not say anything. If possible, try to see things differently, like other people's perspectives. Be honest, open and express your feelings, this will then let other people know how you are feeling and whether they need to help or not. It also models to children how import- ant it is to express your feelings. Finally -- learn to view stressful situations with a positive perspec- tive. If you look at a stressful situation negatively and think about it as something stressful, then this will naturally get you down. However -- if you look at it more positively, then you will feel differently about it. Remember, we need to make sure we are doing what is best for children and having a less-stressed parent is better than one who is erratic and not coping. Good luck, and if this has opened up a door for you and you feel like you need some support with your stress levels then make an appoint- ment to see an expert.
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