Being a Good Parent on a Tough Day

We’ve all had those days when our kids aren’t behaving or are feeling sick, laundry and dishes are piling up, there are fires to put out at work and home, and you’re at your wit’s end. As we enter into summer break, our kids are going to be more restless and bored. Instead of letting the frustration overwhelm you, try to shift your mindset and enjoy even the most chaotic of days. Here are some simple activities and solutions to help brighten up a bad day and allow you to be present for your kids.

Step back for a moment and prioritize your to-do list for the day.

So, your baby is sick, your boss is demanding, and you have five different mountains of clothes to wash. Guess what? The clothes (unfortunately) aren’t going anywhere. They will be patiently waiting for you whenever you manage to find time to wash them.

Write down everything you think you need to accomplish for the day. It’s okay if the list seems intimidatingly long at first. Take a deep breath and cross the non-urgent items off your list for the day. Write them down a new piece of paper to complete later in the week. By assigning the tasks to a new day, you won’t feel as guilty for not completing them immediately. Once you start working on them at the new scheduled time, you will feel recharged and ready to be present while completing the tasks. Cut yourself some slack and remember that you are doing a great job, even if you can’t get to everything right away like you normally do.

Acknowledge that you are having a bad day.

You always find what you’re looking for. If you have a negative outlook on the day, you’re going to find negativity around every corner. If you’re having a day where it seems like nothing is going right, take a second to pause and realize that you have the power to change your outlook on the day. You can choose to reset the day at any time. Tell yourself outloud, “I am not going to let today overwhelm me. I am going to turn this day around and have a good day with my kids.

Ease Mama Guilt With Mantra Meditation: Here’s a great list of meditation mantras if you’re feeling “mom guilt.” Whether you feel like you’re not a good enough mom for your kids, worried that you work too much, or feeling guilty about sending your kids to daycare, these simple mantras will help you fight the guilt and allow you to be more present.

Take care of yourself first.

As parents, it is our natural instinct to protect our children and put them before ourselves. Our children need us to be present and in order to function at full capacity, it’s important to remember to treat ourselves gently and pay attention to our needs. Make sure you are getting enough sleep at night (or napping while your baby naps). Make sure you are fueling your body with nutritious foods throughout the day (don’t forget to eat!), and don’t feel guilty about taking some time to relax. You deserve it!

If you have a favorite way to squeeze self-care into your busy life as a parent, share it with us in the comments below!