Every parent has a rough day (or several). Anyone who says they don’t is lying. But, a bad day doesn’t make you a bad parent. Maybe you lost it today, maybe you shouted when you shouldn’t have, maybe you shut yourself in the loo for ten minutes to have a little weep, perhaps you let your toddler do something you wouldn’t normally let them do so you could just have five minutes to feed the baby in peace.
Don’t fret – you’re human, not superhuman. And tomorrow is another day. Rough times are part and parcel of parenting.
Next time you’re having a bad day, try and remember a few of these tips and they might help you get through it.
Sit on the floor and play with your child. Leave everything else that needs to be done and just be in the moment. Entertaining your little one and stimulating them will help to tire them out. Then, when they have a nap, take some time for you – read a book, pop the telly on or call a friend for a chat. The dishes can wait.
Change the scenery
A rough day can be further exasperated by ‘cabin fever’, so get out of the house. Fresh air and sunshine are great tonics, but if the weather’s bad go for a drive in the car, give yourself time to think, calm down and re-focus.
Release pent-up energy
This will help you and your little ones! Find a way to get your bodies moving and the blood pumping – have races, put music on and dance, jump around, make an obstacle course. Make a mess and worry about it tomorrow. Anything that gets you moving will lift your spirits and take your mind off how you’re feeling.
Mix things up
Have a re-shuffle of your routine to make things more interesting. Give the kids a bath in the afternoon, watch a film together in the morning, and leave the laundry until tomorrow. Being stuck in a routine can be very mundane.
Bring bedtime forward
Ok, maybe this means your little one will be up earlier in the morning but why not just worry about that when it happens? Focus on today, tomorrow is another day.