Day 9 Coping with children
For those of us whose children have flown the nest during Isolation our time is our own to choose what we wish to do; However, for those who have young children at home, suddenly they become a parent, a teacher, and an employee. All these roles can be difficult to juggle. not to mention having anxious children as their normal routine has been unexpectedly changed.
We all know that children need boundaries. When it comes to children’s mental health, for them to feel ‘safe’ they need structure, boundaries and routine. If this is planned it also, in the long run, can make it easier to manage the work - family balance.
Most parents know that children need to let off steam or exercise. Imagine if you left a puppy shut inside all day, it would soon start to destroy things. Children are no different, they need to be able to run around, let off steam tire themselves out. If you need some time to work or get things done it is best to tire the children out a bit first. Take them for a walk or set up an obstacle course in the garden or treasure hunt. Create things that use energy, allowing them to sit on their devices all morning will cause frustration, tiredness and irritability, save this for later when they have let off some steam.
Try to keep to a routine of wake-up time, breakfast, exercise then self-entertainment of their choice, until lunch. After lunch go for a walk or bike ride again to burn some energy before coming home maybe doing a little more work before having family fun time before bed.
Children thrive on routine and systems. If they are not used to this, be prepared for some push backs to start with, but remember you are a parent. Yes we like our children to love us and they always will, even when they don’t like us due to a decision they are not happy with, so do not be afraid to set rules that they may argue with at first.
If you are stuck for things to do with the children ‘Google’ and ‘YouTube’ are great resources full of great ideas of fun activities. Yes it does take time and planning but you will get more completed in the long run as the children will learn when you are available and when you are not.
With very small children it is really important that they learn to be able to play on their own. It is not your job to entertain them 24/7, if you do your children may end up expecting attention all the time well into their adult life, which could lead to food addiction or other types of addiction because they are “bored”.
If you need further guidance with this or any other frustrations then feel free to contact me. Anxietynomore.nz
Best wishes keep safe. Kymberley