When I was a young mom raising four children, home schooling, and working three part time jobs, many would say I was stressed. And, I did not even realize it at the time. Often, you have to do what you have to do in order to provide for your family and make sure you have a roof over your head.
Many of the young families I photograph are over worked, over busy, and look as thought they could use a break. My heart goes out to them. I do remember what it was like to have the emotional, mental, and physical responsibilities of raising a family.
You are always on call as a parent, and often, the emotional and mental stress that comes with juggling work outside the home, work inside the home, juggling schedules, investing your life into your children, and just trying to find time to be together to chill, can be overwhelming.
But, we do not realize what is going on within us when we are so stressed out.
First, know that we are designed to react to stress. Stress can be positive: such as the birth of a child, or negative: having to face continuous challenges with no relief in sight. As a result of that, we become over worked and stress tension continues to build.
Did you know that stress can lead to the following symptoms: Headaches, stomach issues, high blood pressure, chest pains and problems sleeping? These problems tend to keep our bodies in this stressed state and that leads to more problems.
Did you know that 43 percent of adults suffer from long term effects of stress? 75-90 percent of all doctor visits are related to some kind of stress related ailment.
So, what can you do?
Here are ten steps you can take to try to alleviate stress.
1. Prepare everything the night before. Clean up, make lunches, and lay out clothes.
2. Plan Meals ahead of time. Partially cook and freeze meals for easy take out on week nights. I used to prepare everything one day, put them into baggies and freeze them of easy meals during the week.
3.Use the internet to shop and pay bills! All in one; done!
4.See if your work has options for work at home, or flexible start and finish times.
5.Make a family calendar and hang it in a place where everyone can see it. (helps older kids be more organized, too!)
6. Leave your work at work. Come home and be in the moment with your family.
7. Take a few minutes to unwind when you get home so you can be more in the moment with your family, and have an easier time separating yourself from your work.
8. Take time for yourself on a regular basis. You will be a better person for yourself and your family.
9. Divide up the work load at home, so everyone helps; not just one person.
10. Stop being a perfectionist. It never works. :)
I hope this helps! Life goes by so fast. Do not be so caught up in the stress of it that you forget to enjoy the moments as they are.
Disclaimer: image above is not Songs of Life Photography Studio's.