The holiday season is upon us and the kids are demanding attention. While the holidays give us the free time to relax and enjoy ourselves, the reality is often much different.
If you aren’t vigilant and prepared, the summer holidays can very rapidly descend into chaos and disaster. Mum and Dad end up screaming at each other, while the kids cower in the corner. With the extra pressure placed on our time and routines, it’s inevitable we become stressed and angry during the summer holidays.
Stay cool, calm and collected
Simply going to a show or party, throws your normal routine out of the window. Having got used to sending the kids to bed at a reasonable time, now they’re begging to stay up late. It’s enough to drive any parent to the edge of despair.
Diets suffer too. All of a sudden you find yourself handing out extra sugary snacks and missing the family’s regular meals. It’s all too easy to quiet the kids with crisps and biscuits, but even worse to deal with the consequences of an unhealthy diet.
Lead by example
Kids continually look to their parents as role models and examples to follow. If they see the parents succumbing to stress, they will definitely pick up on it and mimic it in their own behaviour.
The aged old tactic of tiring out the kids is always a winner. Getting them down the park in the fresh air and running about, is a great way to boost the mood and revitalize the spirits of the whole family, but be careful not to over do it. All that running around can often mean that you don’t have time to get enough rest. Tiredness and insomnia leads to chronic stress and anxiety, so relax.
Don’t over commit too. You’ll be getting invitations from friends and family to come over and spend the day. Though beware not to let the holiday parties and activities overwhelm the kids. Spreading yourself too thin, and having to fulfill obligations everyday of the holidays will certainly lead to holiday stress and anxiety to both parents and children.
Don’t bash your wallet
All these days out, ice-cream, petrol stops and pocket money, lead to financial ruin. By lowering expectations, you’ll have the tools to accept the reality of the holidays, and bypass the stress and anxiety associated when things go wrong, as they often do. Whether the kids have a meltdown in the back seat or Dad blowing his top over the smallest of incidents; being prepared for imperfection can help reduce holiday stress.
Share the load
Talk to a friend about your feelings. Take a break from making everyone else the priority and prioritize yourself.
Take a break from holiday chores to call a friend and meet up over a cup of tea. Talking about your feelings to a supportive friend can be an invaluable, and an important way to relieve holiday stress and anxiety. Let others help and accept the offer of the kids to do the shopping or the vacuuming.
Recharge your batteries
Take time out for yourself. We each live in our own realities and we each have our own preferences. Take yourself off for a quiet walk in the park, or visit a day-spa for a massage and manicure. Put the ‘do not disturb’ sign on the door and listen to your favourite music.
The best way to beat the holiday stress is to take care of yourself.
You are number one; so make it so.
The summer holidays are here to be enjoyed but can so easily turn into a nightmare. If you are prone to anger and stress check out www.stressexperts.co.uk, www.beatinganger.com and www.angermanage.co.uk. They offer a wealth of advice and practical tools on how to manage anger and stress on a daily basis.
Enjoy your holidays; don’t hate them…