Whether you’re a stay at home parent, a working parent, a single parent or a married parent, raising a family can be rewarding, but stressful. Faced with managing a busy schedule including household duties and job-related responsibilities, parents often feel tired, rushed and short on quality time with their children.
Everyday stresses– who does the school run or takes out the trash - affect couples. Though seemingly trivial compared to challenges like moving, job loss or divorce, research shows that how couples handle small stresses affects how they cope with bigger ones.
To keep relationships and families healthy, it is important that parents take steps to alleviate their personal and work stress.
Children model their parents and if stress is ignored or dealt with in unhealthy ways, parents risk passing their negative behaviors on to their little ones. In a recent APA Stress In America Survey, 47% of adults reported losing patience with or yelling at their partner; 46% reported similar behaviors with their children. Numerous studies have also shown that stress contributes to parents being less responsive and affectionate towards their children which can have serious repercussions on them, including but not limited to:
- Feelings of rejection
- Lower self-esteem
- Disruptive and aggressive behaviors
- Social withdrawal
How Stress Management Coaching Can Help
Although stress is an inevitable part of parenting, the good news is that there are many ways to control how it affects you. The right support and stress relief plan is essential - and personal coaching provides the roadmap, step-by-step guidance to develop new stress coping skills. IT Coaching can empower you to become calmer, more engaged as a parent and energized to get through the day by helping you to:
Spot early warning signs. Catching stress early before it spills over into child rearing is key. Symptoms can be physical (headaches, colds, chest pain, racing heart, dizziness, etc.), cognitive (racing thoughts, difficulty concentrating/brain fog, etc.), emotional (constant worry, irritability, agitation, overwhelm, etc.) and behavioral (changes in eating habits, sleep disturbances, procrastination, etc.).
Identify your stress triggers. Everyone reacts to stress in their own way - and for different reasons (time demands, financial/career pressures, marital/relationship issues, health concerns, increased parental responsibilities, etc.) Knowing what triggers your stress reactions is the first step in managing family and parenting stress more effectively. Take our free stress quizzes to assess your personal and work stress triggers.
Make healthier choices. How do you respond to stress? Do you tend to overeat or engage in other unhealthy behaviors like smoking or drinking alcohol when feeling stressed? Learning to make small but powerful changes to your lifestyle and daily habits can help you keep stress at bay - and model healthy behaviors for your children.
negative moods. Many parents spend their days stuck in stress,
frustration and overwhelm. Understanding how you create these unproductive
states and learning to reframe them can help you shift negative thoughts and emotions to a more positive mindset, which is just as important as eating well and getting enough exercise and sleep.
Improve your self-care. The stress of parenting can leave you vulnerable to fatigue, anxiety and other serious health issues (weaker immune system, obesity, depression, etc.). Making time to eat well, get a good night's sleep, exercise and practice relaxation techniques will help relieve daily pressures and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Develop new coping skills. Deep breathing, muscle relaxation, meditation, body scanning and guided imagery are powerful mindfulness techniques for de-stressing your body and brain. In a recent UCLA study, participants who learned and practiced mindfulness for just 5 minutes a day over 3-weeks significantly reduced their stress. They also experienced an increase in life satisfaction, mastery of their environment and more positive relationships with others.
Ready to find relief? Read about our Stress Management Programs and schedule a free discovery call today. Learn how personal coaching can help alleviate stress and restore ease, balance, joy and wellbeing to your family life.