How do I cope with stress from being a mother?
While motherhood is a blessing, there is no denying it can also be stressful at times. What are for tips for coping with the stress that comes along with being a mom?
Prayer helps! Every day I pray to be able to focus on the things that are most important, understand the needs of my family, and use my time wisely. Prayer helps me stay calm and stay focused. During the day when I am feeling overwhelmed, I try to recognize what is most important for the welfare of my family and set aside other less-important things, such as checking my email. If my kids can feel my love and their needs are met, then I am doing alright.
Making sure you get enough sleep is key in those early days. At any age/stage, making sure you carve out just 10-15 minutes of absolute silence (not watching t.v.) for yourself is so important. Do deep breathing or focus on something relaxing. It seems small, but makes a world of difference.
1. Relax. Women have been raising babies since the beginning of time. Accept that you will not be the best mommy in all the world nor will you be the worst, but you WILL be the best mommy for your child and that is what really matters.
2. Laugh. My son was chronically ill for his first 5 years. It wasn't funny. What was funny was the many ways he tried to trick me into thinking that he was really using his inhaler or how the meds he took would keep him up all night - once I found him walking up and down the hallway with a plunger *tunk-fffwop!* *tunk-fffwop!* *tunk-fffwop!* Find the smile in everything. Hold it close. Use it often.
This is my favor tip that I heard as a new mother, and I used it more times that I can tell you (mostly duirng the first 3 months, which was the most stressful for me)... I used to get stressed out with the crying. It made me crazy. When the crying gets to you, put the baby in the crib (or other safe spot), shut the door and walk away. Even if he keeps crying, you know he's safe, and you can let out a little stress. Everyone will be happier. So, go read a book for 10 minutes, take the dishes out of the dishwasher, or folder a load of laundry. Even if the baby does not stop crying, you will feel better because you escaped the noise for a little bit and you got a chore done. For me, that 10-15 minute break during a crying fit helped amazingly.
The song from Trace Adkins says it all...."your gonna miss this". I just sing this song in my mind, take a deep breath and go forward!!!! The best part is..you are not alone!!!!
Ok, so I'm not a new Mom, but I was once. Now I take care of my 3 grandaughters every day Their ages are 3, 17 months, and 12 months, oh and there is one on the way!...I have 2 grown daughters So I get stressed too. The first one was a cake-walk. A new grandchild...what a wonderful joy. Then came #2...ok I can handle this. I'm not that old yet (I'm 61). Then came the news that #3 was on the way. OMG I started to freak out. Thankfully there is a teacher in each family, so I will have some time off.
Ok to get back to stresses and how I handle it. The first didn't cry too much. The second either but #3 had a cry that was ear piercing even to my very patient husband. We didn't know what to do. I actually considered ear plugs. We did just what others did. We put her in the crib all safe and sound and let her cry. I took the other two outside, baby monitor in hand, and took a deep breath! Within 10 minutes, the crying subsided and baby was sound asleep.
You can only do so much so do what you can. Oh, one thing I have found that works is using Baby Signing Time. All the girls can sign things that they want. It really helps me understand them. The oldest still signs and helps me with the younger two.
I know that there is tons of housework, laundry etc to do when the kids are down for the night but 1 or 2 nights a week, take a bath or just go read a book. Take a hour for YOU. You will be so much more refreshed if you do.
Good luck everyone!
We live in a society in which strength, independence, and capability are the ideal. If you can’t do it all, does that make you weak? Should you be judged if you ask for help? Below, we will discuss what is truly ideal and healthy for families.
Let us acknowledge the following facts. No one is perfect. Everyone has limitations. No one can do it all.
It is a matter of healthy self-knowledge to know oneself well, what one’s strengths and weaknesses are, etc.
It is natural to celebrate one’s strengths.
It is a matter of healthy self-esteem to be able to acknowledge and seek assistance for one’s limitations.
By working with one’s strengths and working around one’s limitations, the individual and his/her environment are more likely to succeed.
In the case of parenting, the societal expectation that moms “bring home the bacon and fry it up in the pan” is daunting. With 24/7 responsibility between the equivalent of two full-time (or full-time-and-then-some) jobs (i.e., work outside the home and work inside the home), moms typically have no decompression or soul-searching time. Time such as this is essential for good mental health, which is in turn essential for good parenting.
Additionally, no one is good at, much less perfect at, everything. Everyone has strengths and weakness. That is what makes us human. Moms who have sufficient self-knowledge to assess accurately their strengths and weaknesses are well poised to parent to their strengths and accommodate for their weaknesses.
If a mom’s strengths include a loving nature, intelligence, and a strong ethical framework, and the mom’s weaknesses include impatience and a difficulty enjoying “non-productive” time, that mom is well advised to place herself in circumstances that play to her strengths and to try to minimize or overcome her weaknesses. It is easy to play to these specific strengths; it is difficult to overcome these specific weaknesses. This is where asking for help can come in. Hiring a nanny through a source such as Nannies4hire.com will help the mom juggle her many responsibilities, and thus minimize her time demands (i.e., her opportunities for impatience). The nanny can additionally provide the children with the fun of “non-productive” time that the children want and need to enjoy.
Children deserve the best we have to offer. We can give our children the best we have, both in terms of what we have ourselves and what other resources we can tap to benefit our children. Our children deserve no less. Asking for help, then, is not a weakness, it is a strength, a sign of self-awareness and self-confidence, and a testimony to the desire of a mom to give her children the best she has to offer.
Let me count the ways..Get enough sleep.Keep in contact with friends.Time out for them and yourself.Laugh at them,laugh at yourself then just laugh for the heck of it!..those are just the beginning!
Definetly important to make time for yourself!, i also find breathing deeply and slowly counting to 10 in your head lol xx
It's Ok to cry every now and again as well!
Join groups for moms like yourself so that you can see that other women are experiencing the same thing, and also to compare your feelings and support each other. There are religious groups, neighborhood groups, community center groups, and organized groups like "Mothers and More", a national organization.
Even just the local community center "open play gym" times are great for meeting other women and kids.
So I guess I would say don't isolate yourself at all. Reach out!
I'm sure prayer and relaxation techniques work wonders for many. I however think wine does the trick. Just when its all too much, and the whining starts to bore a hole into your brain, anti-whining "wining" techniques are the way to go! Keep in mind that too much wine, while eradicating the noise, will also make it difficult to parent, so either keep the wine intake down to a one or two glass minimum, or make sure you have another one of those parental units around as backup (you know , THE DAD!) :)
Vitamines can help your stress levels as well as eating clean foods, exercising, and sleep. I take 1,000 IU of vitamin D everyday as well as B-100 complex. Both these vitamins will make put you in a better mood. Also make sure you are getting enough sleep...this shouldn't be put at the bottom of your 'to do list' but rather placed at the very top. When moms are exhausted, they are more likely to have fewer patients with everyone including their kids.
I write in a journal each day - the blessings and the joys of the day and then also the things that I am going to pray about. While there are many things that happen in a day and some of them stressful, I try to focus about the joy that I experienced during the day right before I go to bed.
meditation or yoga each morning or some form of taking time out for yourself is definitely beneficial to help maintain your inner calm. also consider ditching caffeine or limiting it to 1 a day as its not good for the nervous system. these are things that i have found help me, but everyone is different
Accept help. Follow Vickie's advice and put a crying baby in a safe place and walk away. Share the 'job' with your partner if possible. And remember, you will not be perfect and your baby will love you anyway.
Breast feed your baby.
I take a nap when he does also get up a little earlier and take a bath and light some candles and bubbles. Then go wake him up slowly and softly and it makes it better for everyone.
I am a first-time mom, and my baby has eczema from two weeks old. I dozed off for a minute, and next thing I saw was blood flowing from her ears from scratching (the itch). Stressful, yes! It's amazing I handled it well, occasional breakdown, questioning to God, but still sane.
Your hubby's support is very supportive, mine was undergoing a job transition but his empathy helped tons.
Mei of EczemaBlues
Thankyou so much Heather. This made me feel so much better. Brought me back to reality..and a smile.
Prayer and alone time. Honestly, just having 5 minutes in the morning before all the craziness begins helps keep me calm through the morning. If your kids have outgrown naps, giving them quiet time alone in their rooms (separating them is key) to read or color or play will give you time to regroup and relax, even if it's only 20-30 minutes. And don't pressure yourself to get everything done once they go to bed at night. Allow yourself a little time to do something you enjoy or have an undistracted conversation with your spouse. And remember: this too shall pass!
Thought I posted this but did not see it show up, so here we go again...I have twin girls that are almost 4. Quite a handful at times. It can be quite overwhelming when they are fighting for my attention and I have many things to get done. I find the old saying, "if you can't beat them join them" works well. I stop what I am doing and do somethign constructive with them and we all benefit. And of course a little glass a wine always helps too.
I have three kids and in their early years it was so difficult to relax, but I learned that even if you are completely devoted to your kids you need to take at least 15 minutes for yourself daily. Read a book, sit outside, say a little prayer or just close your eyes and think about nothing. If you do this, everything around you will seem less stressful.
I have my family on a schedule. Laundry is done certain days, grocery shopping, cleaning bathrooms, vacuuming etc. So all of the chores are spaced out, there's predictability and they don't feel so overwhelming. Part of our schedule also includes fun times and things that mommy can relax more during. I meal plan prior to grocery shopping so I don't have to think about what to make when dinner time rolls around during the crazy evening. I alternate easy dinners and dinners that take more prep time. It also saves money because I can plan on using ingrediants I already own. One day a week we eat leftovers, go out for dinner or get take out so I don't have to worry about making anything. Find friends that have kids your kids ages; so you can vent, get advise, have playdates for entertainment, etc. Make sure you take "me" time, even if it's something as simple as a bubble or painting your toe nails.
My favorite thing to do when I feel overwhelmed is to just sit down and enjoy my kids. Play legos or barbies or read a book. It really helps remind you how blessed you are, what being a mommy is really about and your kids are grateful for the undivided mommy time. Good luck!!
3. Girls Night Out
4. Counseling and/or Medication (Seriously - I have to do both of these b/c of my mental health.)
When my son was a new born and my daughter was 3 I would go down stairs to my laundry room, do laundry and cry, pray for wisdom and strengh just to get through the next moment, smile and tell myself "Your doing a great job and this faze won't last forever. Then run up stairs tell my kids Mommy is sorry for having a meltdown and kiss them and say I love them with all my heart.
For me, the constant noise is just hard to deal with. You can let them 'cry it out' safely in their crib, or hand them off to Daddy but you just can't tune them out as well as everyone else can! I think we're built to hear every whimper---it's our instinct to keep them safe. so, HOT SHOWER. Make sure your baby is safe/supervised or you won't be able to relax, but the noise of the shower...especially if you stand right under the showerhead, can drown out an unhappy baby for a few minutes. And the heat is calming.
Additionally, right now, find a person you'd trust with your baby and schedule them for one afternoon a month---an entire afternoon. You need to be free to relax, and not worrying about how close you are to your two-hour limit. Then take the day. I find scheduling a sitter to be stressful. I don't want to have to make the calls, and then feel out how long I should schedule them for. It's SO much better to have that arranged well in advance and look forward to that day off.
Then, finally, the constant interruptions are SO hard to deal with. It's difficult to explain to others how it can take HOURS to clean one room. You know that you're doing a lot of other baby-related things at the same time, and that the room is only getting 5 minutes of your attention at a time.
Raising a baby has different "seasons." Know what you can do in a day, and then do that. The alternative is, stress all day long. Personally, I know that if my house needs more than light cleaning during the week, that I will fall more and more behind as the week goes on. I know this---it's just a fact. We either pick up after ourselves during the week, or we have to put up with some messes until the weekend. I don't stress all day long if the house isn't as clean as I'd like, because I know what I can do in a day. I do it, and anything more is a nice bonus.
Good luck!!! You can do it girl.
Some great tips for coping with stress from motherhood...hope it helps!
I i'm a mother of 3 when i get stress out i will listen some music that i love if its not working i take a deep breath 3 times and look at the sky for few minutes. that make me relax too. sometime is good to read some book also or watch your fav. movies when the kids is not around and eat chocolate. most of all praying is the best help too.
Pray. There isn't anything God gives you to handle that he isn't willing to help you with. He brought us to it, he'll bring us through it!
Aggree about the breast feeding, but unfortunately for me I was only able to do it for the first few days due to medical reasons. I think it's the closeness of mum n bub that is calming and helps reduce stress and you can achieve that with bottle feeding as well by holding bub nice and close and up near the breast while feeding. I had a lot of problems with my first child as I had to learn as I went about all this, but by the third things ran a lot smoother. My first was also a crier and leaving her cry in the cot while I walked down our driveway to check the mail was just the break I'd need... and sometimes she would even go to sleep!
First of all, remember to breath! I know that sound simple but when you get stressed or out of focus, you will find yourself not breath correctly. Take a moment to breath in and out three times slowly and that will help calm you.
Also, when my kids were young, I would pace around the house outside. I was still in the vicinity just in-case the kids needed me but I had a chance to take myself out of the situation, walk out side and breath fresh air. Some times it was many laps around the house but it does help.
Just remember that you are human and you will have frustrating day. Nothing that you can control just need to learn to deal with them the best you can. We each have a breaking points and learning to get back to the sanity which is the hard part.
I am not sure if I could give any good tips or not I think it is a learning experience that guides you. My daughter is now 27 and I have yet learned how to not be disappointed in her behavior at times. I thought she would have grown up by now but she still stresses me out and now has my grandchildren of 3 and 1 on the way and this makes it even more stressful. We learn something every day about our children and most often it is not what we expect , so hopefully someone else can give us both tips....
I sing, making up the words as I go along "I'm getting really stressed right now and I'm going to blow up if we don't tidy up" or " if these boys don't behave I'm going to lock myself in the kitchen". These are some of the things but I have toned it done since they now understand the words when my youngest was a baby singing in a lullaby tune was only thing that would settle him, the words didn't matter to him but they helped my stress!
have a drink