I was talking to another mom this morning. She was stressed. Her work hours doubled in the past month. She’s juggling work and also homeschooling both her young children.

Her oldest child is transgender and is transitioning to different pronouns, way of dressing and maybe a different name. The mom is reading and learning a lot to figure out how to support her child. They are having a lot of conversations as a family.

On top of it all, this family is getting ready to move to another state.

That’s a lot to handle!

Your life might not look like that, but I’m sure you have your own stressors that you are experiencing in your family and your parenting?

As we enter into the holiday season, you might be juggling extra cooking, cleaning, travel, decorating, and time with other people.

Even happy occasions can be quite stressful.

You know that to be a good parent, you need to take care of yourself first. But how do you care for yourself, when you’re already struggling?

To answer this question we turned to Dayna Abraham. We asked her, “What is the next step after you recognize that you’re worried or stressed, or you didn’t get enough sleep or coffee?”

Check out what she said here.

Dayna says to first move away from the misconception that we have to choose between caring for our kids OR caring for ourselves. We can shift from “either/or” to “and”. We can care for our kids AND care for ourselves.

Next come up with a “SPARC” plan of things that you can do throughout your day, just one minute at a time. These are not things to add guilt or overwhelm to your life, rather they are things to be layered into your day. You don’t have to do all of these, you can just pick one.

 

Parts of your “SPARC” Plan:

S = Shift Your Thinking

If you notice that you have a worry or negative thought, swap it out with a positive or empowering thought that is still true, but will help you get through the day

P = Prioritize Your To-Dos

We are powerful parents, but we can’t do and have everything all at once. Pick the number one thing, that will make everything else work, and get that one thing done.

A = Activate Your Body

Move your body a little more today than yesterday. Walk around the block, or up and down the stairs, or do some yoga stretches, or do a dance party with the kids.

R = Recharge Your Body

This will be different for each person. It could mean a quick meditation, or doodling, writing, learning something, or playing air guitar! The purpose of recharging is to help you participate more in the world, rather than to shut out the world by mindlessly scrolling on social media or binge-watching a show.

C = Connect with Another Human

(ideally not your kids!) Connect with another adult, even if it’s just leaving a voicemail or sending a message to a friend.

 

After you’ve read the summary or watched the video, I’d love to hear which one of Dayna’s suggestions you are going to do. Put in the comments which one of Dayna’s suggestions you are going to use this week!

    Resources:

    Get more information about Dayna Abraham and all her resources at Lemon Lime Adventures.

    Get the full interview, weekly coaching, and a caring group of parents in The Village by Happily Family.

    And if you’d like to be on LIVE, while we talk to luminaries like this AND get coaching with Cecilia and Jason, join The Village.

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