Days spent homeschooling and working from home are enough to send any parent doolally, so taking care of ourselves is of the utmost importance.
We all have our own ways to relax, be it a peaceful bath, getting lost in a good book or opening that bottle of Sauvignon Blanc…
Mindfulness techniques are another great method for keeping calm and Norland Nanny Louenna Hood – from the agency preferred by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – has shared some brilliant tips for parents.
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Louenna says: "As a parent, there will always be moments when you feel overwhelmed, guilty or anxious – that’s normal and I’m pretty confident that EVERY parent has felt these emotions. You are often doing several tasks at once, whilst also thinking about a hundred other things.
"By practising mindfulness and focussing your mind on one thing, it brings you to the present and detaches you from all the other elements of stress. Mindfulness is something you can practise anywhere at any time."
Try these 5 mindfulness techniques from Norland Nanny Louenna Hood:
Norland Nanny Louenna Hood
'Calm Begins With Me'
In moments of frustration, when you need a reminder that you can cope in a stressful situation and have the power to respond in a way that you won’t later regret, touch your thumb with your first finger and say the word CALM.
Then touch your thumb with your second finger saying the word BEGINS. With the third finger say WITH, and your fourth finger saying ME. Repeat this a few times until you feel calmness restored.
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Our breath is our calming secret weapon. Deep mindful breaths can work wonders and all the science us there to back this up. Next time you feel overwhelmed or anxious, stop and take 3 deep breaths – in for 6, hold for 6, out for 8.
Take time for you and try some deep breathing
Mindfulness can be done whilst you are doing anything, which is why it’s possible to do when with your children.
Whilst you read your child’s bedtime story, don’t just read the words on autopilot hoping to get to the end as soon as possible. Really focus on every word, the pictures and the story itself.
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In the Shower
I encourage mums to set their alarm for half an hour before the children usually wake in the morning to enjoy a peaceful shower without interruptions.
Whilst in the shower, focus on the feeling of the water on your skin and what the temperature feels like and let your mind drift. Also, take in the smells of the different products you’re using.
Colouring is fun for adults too!
As we know from the demand of adult colouring books, colouring isn’t just for children! It can be a very relaxing activity you can do alongside your child. Being able to shade patterns and shapes can help bring calmness and contentment.
Louenna Hood, Norland Nanny and Founder of parenting app ‘Nanny Louenna’, available for £4.99 from the App Store and Google Play