These are super hard times. We are not only under a viral threat, but we’re also locked up at home with the children, and as much as we love them, and we do – let’s admit it. This is crazy hard.
Check-In With Yourself
When we are in a state of confusion, in sever lack of clarity, we tend to fall to stress and anxiety, and it’s normal. If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed or close to your edge, you’re not alone. Not knowing what’s going on or how long it’s going to take, and what you can do to make your life easier is unbearable. We need to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and currently, it’s still quite dark.
The following tips are meant to take off the edge, decrease the fights and power struggles at home, and help us maintain a positive mindset during this challenging time.
It’s okay for the house to be less clean. It’s okay to have clutter lying around. It’s okay for the dishes to take longer, and it’s okay for the laundry to wait. Our human needs are more important than the needs of the house.
It’s okay for the children to meltdown more often, express their big feelings, to be needier than the usual. It’s okay for them to demand more from us as this period is much harder on them than it is on us. The social isolation is not only a massive shift to their routine, but it also goes against their existential needs. Kids need to play, to laugh, to run around, to be outside, and just be kids. If you’re in a country where you can’t leave the house, your children must be feeling like caged animals.
Drop as many rules as you can without undermining your values, of course. Be easier on everything. And treat yourself and those around you in the same way.
Practice The Art of Letting Go
Most things don’t matter. Think about it, and you’ll see it, too. Many of the things we fight about, the behaviors we correct, our disagreements, and our disconnections are rooted in things that don’t matter.
Use the 10-10-10 rule to find what does matter, and let go of the rest. Ask yourself these questions before you engage in a heated exchange of words:
Will this matter in 10 minutes? Will this matter in 10 days? Will this matter in 10 years?
“Fight” for the things that will matter in 10 years. Everything else is just not worthy of your connection with your family.
Don’t Try to Be Someone You Aren’t
Many of the people (and mothers) I talk to are worried about their children’s schooling and embark on a homeschooling journey that will probably sabotage their relationships. Many mothers feel obliged to supplement the educational system, but this is not our job. We’re parents, and unless homeschooling is something we chose because it is right for us, we should stick to parenting.
Our children need their parents now, not teachers if we haven’t been teaching them until now. They need our support, out love, understanding, communication, and patience. All these traits are likely to be lost if we try to make our house into something that it isn’t.
Be you. Be happy. This might just end up being the best period in your family life 🙂
We underestimate the power of authentic self-expression. We work so hard trying to always be positive with the kids, to use pleasant language, always to be “nice,” that we don’t give our feelings the space that they deserve. And our feelings and thoughts are not always the nicest, and it is okay, so very okay.
It’s okay to say things aloud. It’s okay to wish for the kids to be away again, it’s okay to wish your husband wasn’t home so much! It’s okay to want to go back to the office so very badly. Everything that you are feeling is OKAY. Say anything and everything on your mind. Not to those people themselves, but to a good friend, in a rant post on Facebook, or behind a closed shower door.
Vent freely. You will feel much better afterward.
When everyone is finally asleep, pamper yourself with whatever makes you happy. We all need something to anticipate, wait for, and anchor our emotions in. Let the evening time be your ray of light. Plan it, invest in it, think about it, and do it.
A guilt-free rant with a good friend, a long shower, your favorite Roquefort, and a glass of wine (yes – this is my pleasure), a movie or binge-watching Netflix – do anything you can to lift you and do it with all your heart!
These six tips are guaranteed to make your period in quarantine easier and more enjoyable and help you keep your patience around the kids and in general.
I’m now running a five-day patience challenge in my Facebook group, feel free to follow the link, join and learn the essential tools to mindful living – I’d love to get to know you 🙂