As a mom to four kiddos, I totally get it. Parenting during quarantine sucks. With the holidays fast approaching, there seems to be even more on my plate. These 5 tips on parenting with self-love in the age of self-isolation have helped me, and I hope they help you too.
Nourish Your Body
Without proper nutrition, your body will lose the energy and focus needed to handle parenting duties while balancing work demands.
In fact, according to nutritionist and dietician Lisa Moskovitz, if you go “longer than 4 to 5 hours without eating, the body’s energy levels can crash significantly.” This doesn’t mean that any old granola bar or bag of chips will do the trick! Your brain craves healthy fats and protein to keep chugging along, and lucky for us, there are plenty of nutritious snacks that you probably already have on hand!
Try any of these treats to keep the midday slump at bay:
- Fruit & Almond Butter – Almond Butter is packed full of protein and “good” fats, the kind that boost and sustain energy levels throughout the day, and fruit is a naturally sweet, nutrient-dense base!
- Pistachios – Don’t judge a book by its cover; these tiny nuts pack a huge fiber punch which can help you stay full longer. Pistachios are also known to balance blood sugar & pressure and are super high in antioxidants.
- Tuna – Luckily for our former coworkers, working from home means no one (but your family) has to deal with the fishy smell this powerhouse snack provides. Smelly though it may be, it is also proven to boost immune system functioning, and it’s high protein and omega-3’s will keep you energized all day long.
Hydrate Your Life
Think of your body like a laptop or smartphone: it needs energy to charge up and perform effectively. Water is essential.
According to the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, women require 11.5 cups minimum per day to receive all the energy we need, though those living in especially warm climates may require more. When you are on the go and running errands, grab a bottle of water for the road while you tackle the day!
Did you know that the shallow breathing patterns that accompany stress and exhaustion mean you are not getting the right amount of oxygen your body needs to stay energized and alert?
Breathwork sounds like quite an involved practice, but it can be implemented in whatever way best fits your lifestyle – there’s no moment too small to ground yourself and focus inwards!
Just setting an alarm 3 times a day for a 1-minute breathing exercise can slow your heart rate and aid blood circulation and pressure, which are all key components in maintaining energy levels.
Try this simple breathing practice for an internal check-in throughout the day:
- Start by inhaling through the nose quickly and follow it up with a slower, more intentional in-breath. Next, exhale slowly from your nose and mouth at the same time. Repeat for 60 seconds 3x a day!
Though sitting in a chair for long periods of time isn’t an experience unique to quarantine, the increased stagnancy of our lives can make our bodies feel lethargic and disconnected.
Movement is key for promoting focus, self-confidence and stress reduction, and experts say we should be moderately exercising at least 150 minutes per week. Physical stimulation is vital for our bodies’ proper functioning and reducing the risk of disease.
I encourage you to listen to your bodies. Sometimes a simple stretch, walk around the block, or easy yoga flow can do the trick. You deserve a mental break and for your body to feel good!
Taking a moment at the end of the day to appreciate yourself and find one thing to be proud of makes all the difference. Taking stock of our successes, big or small, can help ground us in the positives. Try not to focus on perfection; you are human and bound to make mistakes, but by reminding yourself of the tangible value you have for your family and yourself, you are acknowledging yourself with love and light. This inward recognition will help you maintain spiritual strength through all the obstacles of this time and is an excellent behavior to model for your kids.