When you are a working parent, it is truly all about the balance. Some days are easier than others. Trying to deal with the daily grind of work, busy after-school schedules, and tedious household chores can leave you feeling overwhelmed.
Instead of muddling through, you can save yourself plenty of worry and anxiety by sticking to a few simple rules while you’re approaching each week and planning the days ahead.
Do Your Best to Stick to a Routine
Everyone thrives with a routine. As parents to infants and toddlers, we institute strict bedtimes, naptime schedules, and feeding schedules. As kids get older, though, we tend to let these tight routines slide a bit. Suddenly, rush hour traffic, soccer practice, piano practice, tutoring, making dinner, and other daily tasks seem to uproot our structured existence.
Rather than everyone working with a separate, unique schedule, have a family plan. Sit down together at the start of the week and work through each day, pen in hand. Have everyone jot down items and think about transportation and being ready on time.
Of course, it doesn’t help when the steady hum of your work routine is thrown off track by a sick child, a phone call from the school, or errands that desperately need to be run in the middle of the day. You cannot possibly plan for these events, but let them be exceptions to your routine rule. Be flexible to some extent. Before you know it, you’ll fall into a groove.
Don’t Try to Do Everything Yourself
Families are meant to work together. Don’t shoulder the household chores and responsibilities yourself. Outsource some of those tasks!
Older children who are able to bring younger siblings to activities can be charged with doing so. Younger children can certainly help with a number of simple chores to help around the house, from keeping their rooms clean to helping clear dishes from the table. Divide things evenly with a spouse or partner if you have one.
For everything to run smoothly and efficiently, delegation is key. Rotate responsibilities, come up with creative incentives, and do whatever you need to do to eliminate stress overall.
Keep Self Care in Mind
Parenting is a job in itself, so working and parenting can really feel like a feat of super-human strength sometimes. Work time into your schedule each week for doing what you love to do, whether that includes doing something fun with the whole family or seeking your own bliss.
Burn out is real, so figure out where you can spare some time and take the kids on an exciting outing to their favorite spot, plan a meal out or date night, or build exercise classes into your schedule. Recharging your batteries may be as simple as putting the kids to bed early and curling up with a good book or tuning into a favorite sitcom. Explore the possibilities and be good to yourself. A relaxed and happy parent is definitely a better parent.
Need Extra Help or Advice?
If you feel like you could use additional support or a place to work through your feelings, Susan Block, LMFT offers comprehensive counseling for those who are dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, or just seeking guidance to help them live happier lives. We’d love to help you. Call our office today and request a free consultation, or schedule your appointment: 954-675-1936.
Susan Block is a licensed marriage and family therapist specializing in marriage, family and individual therapy. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Florida Atlantic University in 1997 and completed her Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Nova Southeastern University in 2004. Also an active member of The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), Susan Block offers Couples Counseling in South Florida, as well as online therapy throughout the state. Click on the link to find out more: https://coralspringscounselingcenter.com/counseling-specialties/online-therapy/