Updated: December 1st, 2020
Reducing Family Stress
As we ease our way out of the current pandemic, old and new stresses will appear. In all families, the stress that each individual experiences, always impacts other family members. The most important tips to keep in mind are:
try to be understanding and accepting of each other's struggles;
try to not be judgmental and offer support.
Effective communication in families is the key to positive growth and change.
A Safe Internal Space
Imagine how helpful it will be, when faced with growing stress and anxiety, to be able to take a deep, slow breath and drop into a safe, relaxed and calm space inside you. In this space, connected to your 'observing self', you are able to consider experiences from a variety of perspectives, consider alternative ways of responding, and make choices that are best for you and for those closest to you. Such a space exists within each of us and it can become stronger and more accessible.
Effective Parenting Strategies
We are all creatures of habit, in how we think, feel and interact. In parenting, and in family systems in general, we fall into patterns of interacting - including patterns that have become reinforcing of a problem. The solution is to engage practices that can stand against the problem and shift the pattern - then, parents become the source of strength and positive change. Watch for opportunities to praise and reinforce attitudes and behaviours that you want to see more often - and you will!
Managing Anxiety & Depression
Creating a strong and accessible 'safe space' inside us, provides a solid foundation on which we can build a more effective system for responding to anxiety, depression and illness in general. Accepting that emotions will come and go - worries, fears, frustrations, disappointments, anger and sadness for example - allows us to not 'get stuck' in them. We know that they will pass, as long as we let them.