Before I jump into my practical, personally-tested, and occasionally odd tips for working parents, I thought I’d provide some context. The concept arose from a well-meaning, but off-base program from my healthcare company intended to help me improve my well-being by, among other things, reducing stress.
After taking an inventory, I selected one of their helpful stress-reducing suggestions – spend 10 minutes, several days a week, decluttering. “I can do that,” I thought. “What’s 10 minutes in a day?”
But it all went terribly wrong.
Instead of helpful hints suggesting I declutter a particular room, or giving me steps I can follow, I’m getting prompts every couple of days that say merely, “Don’t forget to declutter for 10 minutes.” And thanks to my nagging, ever-present smart phone, here is where I’ve picked up this helpful message:
- At work
- On the bleachers at my sons’ lacrosse games
- On a girls’ weekend, the only time in forever I’ve had to relax
- In the parking lot at the grocery store
- In the waiting room where my daughter receives her allergy shots
Are you kidding me? I can tell you, definitively, that this does not lessen my stress. Instead I have been reduced to someone who yells “Stop nagging me!” at their phone in highly public places.
So…I’ve decided, in the interest of promoting sane parents, to try to provide tips that are actually doable. Some will be silly, most will be practical, and many will be about food, since as a working parent, the first thing I usually think about when I awaken is “What should we have for dinner?”
But they are all things I’ve actually been able to do. Use them – or ignore them – as you like. I promise you I will send you no reminders.
Tomorrow….B is for Buffet. And no, I don’t mean dining out.
Read the series: