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Single Dads – a Guide to Reduce Stress

Parnell (Admin) Maret Apr 6,2016 Comments(0) Likes(3) Tips

Single Dads – a Guide to Reduce Stress 

 

If the experience of being a parent is any indicator of stress, single parenting is off the Richter scale. Single parents often face stressors can magnify when you are a single parent trying to play the roles of both Mom and Dad at one time. If you have ever experienced a stressful situation such as almost being in an accident or have a tension headache or sweaty palms, you know firsthand that stress can impact your body as well as your mind. In fact, studies show that stress isn’t good for our health and can be harmful as some 40% of adults can’t sleep due to stress (stress symptoms). How is a single father supposed to handle it all? Here are some ideas to reduce the stress and get you on a path to wellness:

 

1. Get Moving. The benefits of exercise are well known but often forgotten for single parents experiencing work and life stress. If your schedule won’t permit you to go to the racquetball court or gym, why not take the kids outside to throw a ball around or go for a walk with them? Anything that gets you moving will help to alleviate your stress levels.

 

2. Exercise Financial Fitness. Don’t spend more than you make and stay on top of monthly expenses by creating and stick to a family budget. Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’ to unnecessary expenses – a child’s reaction to not getting something is less stressful than drowning in a river of debt.

 

3. Practice Self Care. It’s been said that you cannot give what you don’t possess, so be sure you are healthy enough to be useful for your children. When things get stressful, the difference between a mental breakdown and a calm reaction lies somewhere between the breaths. Find the time for yourself to do something that you enjoy, whether it’s bowling or reading a good book. There’s nothing selfish about self-care.

 

4. Seek out Support. The adage that there is safety in numbers also holds true for single parents. Many community centers, churches and schools offer single parent support groups.  Find a support group in your community with which you can relate. Or, reach out to friends who will listen and can offer advice, and who can empathize with your situation or, at least, make you laugh long enough to forget about your case.

 

5. Get Organized. Having a ‘Plan B’ is a wonderful way to circumvent daily stressors of parenting. Also, if you take the time to get organized, you will be much happier. For example, making lunches the night before, setting items near the door for the morning rush, and putting a family schedule on the fridge (for chores and school events) can help everyone avoid the stress that running late for an important event can produce.

 

It’s impossible and unrealistic to think that there is a way to prevent all hassles in life. However, there are several ways to reduce the impact that the daily grind will have on your health, life and family. With a little patience, some advanced planning, strong group support and random acts of self-care, you will have an arsenal for combating stressors and the time and energy to focus on what matters.  

 

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