Parenting is hard. Admit it. Especially since every couple, every family, every child is different. Even if there were a definitive manual for parenting, it wouldn’t work for every kid in every situation. Add in your crazy schedule, the struggle to balance work and family life, and importance of making sure everyone is properly nourished and rested and you have a recipe for stress, depression, and burnout – for all of you!
What Can You Do?
Consider adopting a more holistic lifestyle, especially adding yoga and meditation to your routine.
You may think it sounds crazy. How can actually adding to your day make life less stressful?
According to a recent Harvard Health Publications article by Julie Corliss, Executive Editor of the Harvard Heart Letter, mindfulness practices like meditation can make a measurable difference in the way we process stress. “… when researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD sifted through nearly 19,000 meditation studies, they found 47 trials that addressed those issues and met their criteria for well-designed studies. Their findings, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest that mindful meditation can help ease psychological stresses like anxiety, depression, and pain.”
We recently found a really encouraging article by Laci Davis on yogiapproved.com (http://www.yogiapproved.com/health-wellness/how-yoga-meditation-and-holistic-living-has-benefited-my-family/) sharing how she was able to stop smoking, kicked depression, and turned the entire family’s life around through meditation, practicing yoga, and eating a plant-based diet.” “We decided to start a family yoga practice. For the last two years, every morning before we start our day, we practice 15-30 minutes of yoga and meditation,” says Laci. “We have found that everybody is happier from it. The kids are better able to focus, we have less tantrums and more willingness to communicate…We have all become closer because of our yoga practice.”
Now doesn’t that sound like a dream? Why not try it?
How Can I Get my Family to Buy in to the Plan?
If chaos has been ruling at your house…if you are constantly stressed…if it seems there is never time to take a deep breath, it isn’t just affecting you. It is having a negative effect on your entire family. You might be surprised to discover how ready your children and your partner are to make a positive change.
- Make getting happier and healthier a family decision. Set up a family meeting and talk. You can even do this with young children. Everyone loves feeling involved.
- Put it on your family calendar. When people know what to expect, they can incorporate it into their plans and thought patterns.
- Do not expect it to always go smoothly. Do not give up hope when you run into difficulty..
- Let everyone take turns planning meals, choosing yoga routines, and morning affirmations. Even allowing family members to choose a weekly guided meditation can be helpful. Again, family decision-making is key.
- Be willing to compromise. Let the kids choose a weekly treat. Buy back most of the Halloween or Easter candy they get but let them keep a few favorites.
- Instead of nagging, lead by example. When your family members see the positive changes occurring in your life, they will be more willing to join you!
To learn more about how holistic living coupled with yoga and meditation can benefit your family, please feel free to give our Wilmington dental office a call at 302-239-1641. Dr. Lewis Yu and Dr. Grace Liu created All About Smiles to help you get the most out of your smile – and your life!