10 Secrets Of Being A Truly Happy Parent Even During Troubled Times
Learn 10 ways in which these parenting experts believe parents can reach true happiness!
Parenting is filled with ups and downs, highs and lows, and tons of speed bumps. It’s never something that will be considered easy, and as a matter of fact, there is data to support the troubles of parenting. A study published in the journal Demography found that in year one of parenting, mums and dads were less happy and the effect was worse than divorce, unemployment and even the death of a spouse.
In spite of the struggles and hardships associated with being a parent, it’s important that there are positives. If parents keep that in mind, they can work to become truly happy parents. Today, we’ll be looking at advice from experts in the field of parenting to see what it takes to be a truly happy parent.
Check out the list of expert advice and learn the secrets of being a happy parent:
1. Connecting with your kids
“Where true happiness lies as a parent is in connection,” says Dr. Laura Markham, a clinical psychologist in New York City and author of “Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids,” and “Peaceful Parent, Happy Siblings.” Ideally, you won’t be spending every waking second with your kids, especially when they’re a bit older. However, truly happy parents are those who are able to connect with their kids as much as possible.
Don’t let the daily routines and tasks you’re dealt become an obstruction to your relationship with your kids. Make sure you have time to spend with them. If you can’t find the time in your schedule, make it!
2. Be proactive
Happy parents are ones who aren’t ever caught off guard. They’re always prepared and can see what’s coming before it ever even happens. If you want to be a truly happy parent, be proactive in your style of parenting. Don’t get buried up to your eyes in responsibilities, make sure that you’re one step ahead at all times so you don’t add stress to your day. The less stress, the happier the parent.
3. Quit yelling and raising your voice
The frustrations of being a parent are very real and very palpable, but that doesn’t mean that yelling at your kids is an effective way to relieve those frustrations. Yelling is not an acceptable form of stress relief and should never be applied to parenting. In fact, parents who remain calm and level headed are typically more effective in getting their point across, and also in reaching new levels of happiness!
Try implementing a no-yelling rule with yourself: “It can take up to three months to stop yelling altogether, but you’ll not only feel happier, but you’ll also be teaching your child that it’s possible to feel angry without taking it out on other people,” Dr. Markham says.
4. Be kind to yourself
Becoming a truly happy parent comes from within. You’re obviously going to need to radiate positivity if you want to be happy and make others happy. However, to do that…you must look inward. Markham suggests that you need to be kind to yourself to be kind to others.
“Ultimately, the research shows running on full means you have to fill yourself up. You can’t just expect life to fill you up,” Markham said.
Be your own source of positivity and kindness so that you can efficiently exude happiness. This will translate to positivity towards your kids and even your spouse.
5. Drop the parenting guilt
Elizabeth Lombardo, a psychologist in Chicago, and author of “Better Than Perfect: 7 Strategies to Crush Your Inner Critic and Create a Life You Love”, says that “laying on the guilt increases your stress and makes you react to your child in ways that you don’t want to.”
One effective way to eliminate parenting guilt is to nix any feelings of regret. Lombardo says to throw some words out of your vocabulary, for example, “should”. Don’t get caught up in the “could’ve, should’ve, would’ve” of a situation and stay confident in your decisions and choices.
6. Rate your stress
Relieving stress requires a lot of work, but if you understand your level of stress, it can be much easier. If you know what level of stress you’re at, then you can more easily understand what you need to do alleviate the problem. Use a 1-10 scale to understand where you are in terms of stress and assign certain sources of relief based on each number. A 1, for example, could be resolved by taking a moment to think to yourself. a 10 could be relieved by going to the gym and physically releasing tension. It’s going to be different for everyone, but the less stress a parent experiences will always result in a happier parent.
7. Be grateful
Parents are constantly trying to get their kids to be thankful, and teaching the invaluable lessons of being grateful. These are important lessons, and parents should be striving for gratefulness as well. Be appreciative of the little things your kids do for you. Big or small. Keep mental notes of everything you’re grateful for, and you’ll be reminded more often of how blessed you really are which will lead to a happier parent!
8. Let go of the little things
Focus on what matters in life. DOn’t get caught up in too many of the little things that can strain a relationship. You needn’t make every little issue a big one, or care too much about the things in life that are best described as trivial. Parenting will always be filled with little speed bumps and parents who overemphasize each and every minor problem will never be as happy as a parent who can simply let things go.
9. Retail therapy
This may sound crazy, but in some ways, money can buy happiness. A recent study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science found that buying things can make us happy over the long-term, while experiences, like a vacation can give us intense happiness but it can wane over time.
Make sure you’re being prudent with your spending, but if you can incorporate certain purchases into you budget, give it a shot, parents. A healthy dose of retail therapy can result in happier parents.
10. Make time for your co-parent
Spending time with your kids is a very important feature of happy parents, but truly happy parents also work to make time with their partners. Whether it’s 10 minutes, a regular date night, or just a cup of coffee before going to work, parents who make time to bond with their co-parent are typically happier than those who don’t.
“The stronger you two are the more love you’re going to have in your household and the better co-parents you’re going to be,” Lombardo says.
[H/T] Fox News
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