“Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.”
As extracurricular activities, playgroups, public facilities, daycares, and schools close in response to the Novel Coronavirus, we as moms, are faced with added responsibilities.
On top of what we already do, we are now also in charge of enforcing stricter sanitization, coming up with new entertainment, and homeschooling.
Even with the speedy availability of free resources, this is all so daunting.
Part of me is excited about the idea of strengthening my relationship with my boys as we spend more time together. However, there’s a bigger part of me that’s very nervous about all this extra time with them!
If you’re anything like me and the other moms I’ve spoken to over the last few days, you’re also worried about losing your mind as you engage in social distancing, homeschooling, and the like.
Inevitably we will be dealing with cabin fever, boredom, increased anxieties, and frustration from the change in routine. That means more whining, tantrums, sibling fights, and other attention-seeking behaviours from our children, as well as shorter fuses from us.
So, what can we as moms do to handle our big emotions, our overwhelm, and our stress in this time of uncertainty?
How can we ensure we are ready to cope with the big emotions and behaviours of our children?
When you feel the tension rising, sense a mom explosion looming, are on the verge of tears, or simply need a mommy time-out…
Here are 25 calm down strategies for YOU.
- Breath deeply (at least 10 times for best results).
- Drink some water.
- Practice gratitude by reminding yourself of something you love. Even better, something you love about your child/children
- Count to 10, slowly.
- Listen to your favourite upbeat or calming song.
- Move your body. Just 2-minutes will help to release negative or stale energy.
- Meditate or get into a zen pose and sit quietly.
- Do some stretching.
- Step outside for fresh air and/or some sun.
- Lighten the mood by redirecting their attention, and yours, to something that makes them laugh.
- Look at a picture of something beautiful, something that you know will make you smile.
- Close your eyes, place your hand on your heart, and repeat to yourself “I choose love” or “ I choose kindness”.
- Forgive your child for their behaviour, and remember they don’t want to have a melt-down and ruin the moment, it doesn’t feel good for them either. They are just little humans.
- Think about the solutions rather than focusing on blaming.
- Find a quiet place to reset.
- Wear an elastic around your wrist and snap it anytime you feel angry to“snap” yourself out of it.
- Sip on some tea, or a warm glass of water with lemon.
- Splash or dab your face with water on your face with water.
- Acknowledge your feelings, doing so will allow them to lower in intensity.
- Visualize a bubble around you and don’t let anything negative in. This will separate you from the emotions that aren’t yours.
- Colour in a colouring book, or doodle on blank paper.
- Turn on your diffuser or light a scented candle with our favourite calming smells.
- Squeeze a stress ball or another object like playdough.
- Phone a friend and vent to them, maybe it’s just a matter of getting the words out to someone.
- Cuddle. Sometimes when we feel big emotions we need to be close. Hugs, snuggles, and cuddles are going to boost oxytocin and help you calm down.
Bonus: Do these in front of your children so they see that we all have big emotions and we all have to learn when and how to self-regulate.
Pick some of these that resonate with you and have them ready for those inevitable moments of overwhelm and undesirable behaviours.
Planning ahead will help you be prepared to handle yourself resulting in you responding rather than reacting in moments when being a mom is the hardest.
I hope you are staying safe and healthy. If you have any questions, please reach out!
With love & gratitude,