Whether you are a stay at home mom, work at home mom, single mom, working mom or any other variation of a mom, you are going to get stressed out every now and then. Being a mother or parent in general is a heavy load. There are so many things going on and so many things to take care of at all times. Throw life, love, friends, work or any other commitments into the mix and your head could pop off, it starts spinning so fast. The idea is to know when you are dealing with too much, what to do when you realize that you are stressed out and how to avoid getting stressed out beyond your breaking point.
Signs You are a Stressed Out Mom
If you find these statements to be correct for the most part in describing you lately, it may be time to deal with your stress:
- You’re depressed or unhappier than normal
- Your eating habits have changed drastically. You either barely eat of you are constantly eating
- You have a hard time relaxing even when there is nothing urgent going on
- You have been fighting more with your husband or yelling more at your kids
- Things that don’t usually bother you are setting you off
- You either can’t sleep of you are constantly sleeping when you get the chance
- Your body just feels “off” including frequent headaches, nausea, dizziness, aches and pains, diarrhea or constipation
- You caught a cold and cant seem to shake it
- Your sex drive has completely died
- You are procrastinating or avoiding your responsibilities
- You need alcohol, cigarettes and/or drugs to relax
- You have shut yourself off from everyone else
Laughter is the Best Medicine
Laughter can do a great deal towards helping relieve stress. Laughter can actually relax your muscles, getting rid of the physical pains of stress. Laughing can even release chemicals into your body that can combat stress. In the long run, laughter can even improve your immune system.
So, tell a corny joke, watch a funny movie, go out a watch a comic act. Do whatever it is that can make you laugh. If you have that one friend who always makes you laugh, find a way to be around them. Surround yourself with anything that will make you laugh. You can even try just laughing at nothing, maybe it will trigger a real laugh because you will feel so silly. Give it a try, you’ve got nothing to lose.
Have a laugh at the things I had to learn the hard way.
Take a Break
We have all had those days where the dog just chewed the couch, laundry, dishes and bills need your attention, your late to pick up one kid and the other has been screaming all day for god knows what. This is when you need to find somewhere quiet in your house. Go to that place whether it is your room, garage, shed or backyard. Take a few deep breaths, sit there enjoying the silence, get your thoughts together and then go back to whatever it is you need to be doing.
The best thing you could do is not to wait until you are about to crack to take a break. If you were working a 9 to 5 job, you would get a few coffee breaks and a lunch break. There is no reason moms shouldn’t get the same thing. It is necessary to keep the stress in check and your sanity present.
Do Something Non Mommy Related
Sometimes you just need to forget you are a mom. As harsh as that sounds, it’s true. Get a babysitter or leave your kid(s) with their daddy. Go out and do whatever it is you loved to do before you had kids and you haven’t done in a long time. Meet up with your girls at the bar for karaoke and drinks. Join a soccer league that meets regularly and make that your “I’m clocking out” time. Even though being a mom is a full time job, you need to make sure you are “off work” occasionally. Don’t ever forget that you were a person, a woman, before you were a mother. All moms still need to be who they are and do what they love or they will not be happy with their life.
Get Some Exercise
Exercise is great as helping you manage stress. Exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy! So, make time for some kind of physical activity everyday. Go for a walk, play tag with your kids, do an exercise video in your living room. Just get your heart rate up in one way or another and you will feel much better.
Being a mom means you are being pulled in a million different directions all at the same time. Multitasking is an essential mommy skill. Being organized makes it much more possible to multitask because you know where everything is and what you need to do to get things done. Organization keeps you from wasting precious time looking for things or trying to get your thoughts straight. Your mind and emotions follow your environment. If your house is chaos, most likely you are too.
Before you go to bed at night, tidy up the house and lay out anything you will need first thing in the morning. This way, your day will start off smoothly and hopefully will continue to be less stressful.
It seems like moms only get special treatment one day out of the year. Don’t wait all year for Mother’s Day to come around just so you can get pampered. Pamper yourself, you deserve it! Moms need to regularly take time to relax and unwind. If you forget about taking care of yourself in the hustle of motherhood, quality of life for the whole family will decrease.
So, make time to get your hair cut, get a massage, go to the spa, anything! Something you can do at home is to turn on some music, light some candles and take a bubble bath all by yourself. You need to make sure that you feel good first and then worry about everyone else. Mothers spend too much time thinking about everyone else. Focus on yourself for a change. It is much easier to take care of everyone else if you take care of yourself first.
Ask for Help
Yes, everyone knows you are SuperMom. But, must you prove it at all times? Don’t be afraid to ask for help. You can’t be everywhere at all times and sometimes you cant get everything done that you wanted to. Ask your husband to cook dinner or do the dishes. Call your mom or a friend and ask them to come over to watch your kids while you get some things done. Everyone needs help every now and then and there are always going to be people willing to help you. It does not make you weak to ask for help, it makes you strong because you acknowledge that you can not do it on your own.
Let it Out
If you bottle up all of your stress all of the time, you are probably going to have a mental break down one day. You need to let it out; talk to someone, vent, scream, anything. Just don’t keep it all inside. Find a good therapist to see when you notice that you are starting to get overwhelmed. Call a friend or family member on a regular basis to just talk about life and whats going on.
Let me know how you deal with it when you turn into one stressed out mom.