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Maxed out parents

maxed out parents

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Working full-time can be pretty demanding. Parenting can be pretty demanding. Add the two together and you often get what we call ‘maxed out parents’. That’s mums and dads who are doing so much that they get a bit burned out.

There’s no easy one-size-fits-all solution to finding a great life-work balance. It’s all about what works for you and your family. However, if you are on the way to becoming a maxed out parent then here are some tips that might help.

Find the sources of stress

While some things causing you stress will be glaringly obvious, others a little trickier to put your finger on. Knowing what is causing you most stress can help relieve burnout. You may not be able to do much to change the situation but just knowing why you feel the way you do can be comforting. Eliminate the stresses you can and organise something to look forward to at the end of a demanding week.

Don’t be house-proud

When you’re a parent you can’t afford to be particularly house-proud, whether you work outside the home or not. After all, kids are expert at making a mess faster than parents can tidy. But not everything has to be perfect. As long as your home is clean and healthy, it doesn’t matter if there are a few toys lying around and a pile of ironing to be done. Children remember the time their parents spent with them and not the time their folks spent washing the skirting boards. So use the time you have at home efficiently and do fun stuff with the family.

Support network

maxed out parentsIf you have a partner then they will no doubt be a huge support to you. However, they are likely going through all the same feelings you are. Make sure you have a friend or two that you can ring up or meet for a drink every so often just to have a rant. Your friend doesn’t necessarily have to offer any solutions, just a chance for you to let everything out and get things off your chest.

Request flexible hours

All parents in the UK have the right to ask for flexible working hours. This can mean cutting the number of hours you work, working from home one day a week or starting and finishing work at different times. Any combination of these could make your life a whole lot easier so it’s worth asking. Employers aren’t legally obliged to grant your request but they do have to seriously consider it. Think about what benefits your flexible working would have for the company (the office being staffed earlier in the morning, for example) and use those as a selling point when making your request.

Take time out

When you’re run off your feet it can be easy to forget to relax. However, it’s important to take some time out and enjoy yourself. It doesn’t have to be a big thing – give the kids an extra-tight cuddle, turn your favourite music on full blast or enjoy a glass of wine to unwind in the evening. Whatever you do, be sure to turn off your work mobile and don’t even think about checking your emails.

Look to the future

When you’re absolutely frazzled, remember that life won’t always be like this. The kids will get older and learn to do more for themselves, work will calm down and you won’t always be under so much pressure. It might not be easy right now but things will get better.







About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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