Coping with life's ups and downs

Looking after yourself

Meeting the needs of your child and the other demands of your life can sometimes take its toll. Find out why it’s important to make some time for yourself and manage your own feelings when times get tough - including tips for resolving conflicts and calming things down in your family relationships.

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Parents often spend all their time looking after everyone else in the family and forget about themselves. If you don’t look after yourself, you can end up feeling miserable and resentful, and you won’t be able to give your children the support they need.

Embracing self-care 

It is ok to acknowledge that you have feelings and needs of your own. It’s not selfish to treat yourself once in a while! It doesn't have to be expensive - but putting aside some time to do just what you want to do, even if it's only 10 minutes a day - is so important. Add self-care to your daily routine to help your wellbeing.

  • Connect with your friends or family online for some much needed me time.
  • Try to get outside for a walk as fresh air can help clear your mind and de-stress.
  • Try to do the things you enjoy, whether it be baking a delicious cake, painting or watching a box set.
  • Exercise or doing something fun and active helps the body and your mind cope better with stress.
  • Delegate chores to your family so you are not having to cope with doing everything for everyone.
  • Sleep is important, try to keep a weekday routine of early nights so you can feel refreshed in the mornings.
  • Try not to bottle up how you feel, talk to someone you trust and share your emotions.
  • Use mindfulness as a way to take care of yourself. Meditation, breathing or grounding yourself can be a much needed tonic. Read this article from the NHS for tips on this.
  • Live in the present and avoid thinking too far ahead in the future or in the past as that can cause anxiety.

Balancing work and home life 

It’s not easy balancing your work and home life, but how you manage it can make quite a difference to your relationship with your family. For many of those who are working from home due to the pandemic, it can be overwhelming trying to work and meet the needs of your family. Read our top tips on working from home to help you make this a smoother operation.

If you are working away from the home, having a balance between work and home boosts self-esteem. This is because you're not always worrying about neglecting your responsibilities in any area, making you feel more in control of your life and your time. 

Managing setbacks 

It can be natural to feel overwhelmed when we have a curveball come our way in life. How we deal with it can either define us or defeat us. It is important to look at the bigger picture and accept that life does bring challenges at times. Approach it in a calm way and be honest with your family in an age appropriate way that you are dealing with some challenges and may need some support. Focus on what you can control and make a gentle plan to overcome the setbacks.

Resolving conflicts 

It is natural for families to have conflict and how you deal with it is crucial. Try to have a calm approach when you are dealing with arguments within your family. It may help to diffuse situations by walking away and coming back to it when things are calmer so you can discuss any potential issues and help work together to resolve it. 

Further support 

At Family Lives, we do understand how different each situation is. If you would like further support and advice, call us on 0808 800 2222 or email us at askus@familylives.org.uk. You can talk to us online via our live chat service, which is open, Monday to Friday between 1.30pm and 9pm. You can also use our online forums to talk to other parents and share experiences.

Watch this video below for further tips

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