There are days when nothing seems to be going right around here. I’m frustrated, low on patience and feel like I’m failing at everything. The kids can’t seem to settle into anything and an all out sibling war is obviously on the horizon.
It’s days like this that I feel like parenting is hard… too hard.
But here’s the thing… I actually find these really hard days really helpful.
These really hard days force me to make a change. They force me to improve my parenting situation. And the quickest way I know to improve my parenting situation is to change my parenting mindset.
Here are some easy mindset switches that work for me.
6 Thoughts that Make Parenting Harder
… and what to think instead!
I don’t have time for me.”
It’s really easy to get caught in the trap of taking care of everyone but yourself. Adding me time into your life can feel a bit overwhelming but it doesn’t have too. You can actually get in me time with the kids. The most important thing is to be intentional about it.
What to think instead: “I really enjoy coloring. I’m going to sit down and color with them. And I’m going to do it just because I want to.”
This day sucks… it’s one terrible thing after the next… I wish it was bedtime.”
Okay so yes, sometimes starting a new day is exactly what everyone needs. Rest and a fresh start. But what if it’s not even lunch yet? You can flip the switch and turn around a bad day anytime… all you need is the right mindset.
What to think instead: “I have the power to turn this day around. In this moment my job is to find any and all positives.”
Why is it so hard for the kids to do even the most simple task?”
This is a big one. Clothes next to the laundry basket, dishes left on the table, shoes dropped in the middle of the hall. These little things add up to big frustration and can drain your patience quickly. Since getting frustrated hasn’t been working (obviously), try this new thought out.
What to think instead: “He’s in training. When someone is in training they will have successful days and less successful days. I expect mistakes and growth.”
They are so crazy, wild and LOUD right now. I’m going to lose it!”
Loud and crazy play happens daily. (Or is that just my house?) When you are trying to do the dishes or make the grocery list or catch up on work… that loud and crazy play becomes unbearable. Have you ever noticed that when you are in on the action it doesn’t sound quite as loud or look quite as crazy?
What to think instead: “They are having so much fun right now. I’m totally going to join in. The dishes can wait.”
I’m doing this alone. Why doesn’t anyone ever help me?”
You may feel like you are parenting alone or you may actually be parenting alone. Either way chances are you have some type of help. Look for ways to help your spouse become more helpful, places you can trade with other parents or even ways you can hire help.
What to think instead: “I need help with this. What do I need to do or ask in order to get the help I need?”
I make so many mistakes. I wish I was a better parent.”
Every single day you make a lot of mistakes. Guess what? Every other parent does too. Guess what else? Every single day you are doing really great things. If you focus on the mistakes it’s easy to feel like you are failing at this parenting thing. If you focus on the good you’re doing it makes it easier to feel more confident.
What to think instead: “Today I was a good parent because I (one specific thing).”
What thoughts are making your days harder? How can you change the way your thinking about them? Share in the comments.