How Can Your Children Help Reduce Your Household Stress
Created by Bidemi Nelson Updated on Mar 21, 2020
Stress and anxiety are common lifestyle side-effects in today's world. There is so much to do, as a mother of two kids, at times I wish I had two bodies. I still feel better placed than the working moms who are handling the dual role of raising children and profession demands. It’s not difficult to imagine the huge stress they must go through.
The bad part of the stress not only affects personal health but also makes life less fulfilling. It can affect our sleep, food digestion, memory, immunity and even our abilities to conceive. If you are a working mother, house chores and work deadlines have come to stay.
However, while researching on the subject of stress I also found that it is not always bad. A moderate level of stress can be good and can help us achieve bigger goals in the most unfriendly circumstances. The big question is, ‘how do you get to the positive side of the stress in your life?’
Here’s What You Can Do?
Your children can be a huge source of positive stress. I used to shy away from including my children in house chores because I felt they are too young and will do a poor job, or worse, get injured. However, I found that I couldn’t have been more wrong.
Although, they may make mistakes in the beginning, now when I reflect, I feel happy that I did involve them. Children learn fast and improve even faster, and even surprise at times, while mistakes turn into great lifetime memories.
More importantly, I could build a very strong bond with both my kids, as we spent more time interacting. Not to mention how much they wanted to please me with their work.
Getting Children’s Interest in House Chores
Getting help from children to do chores is far easier than it looks. Here are a few ways you can get their attention to what they need to do around the house:
1. Do They Know Their Responsibilities?
Let children know about the tasks which are their responsibility. I always try to call my kids and engage them with urgent chores if they are sitting idle. Specific instructions on what they need to do and consistency of the task helps build the responsibility trend. For example, setting the bed right after waking up, or organising their room before going to sleep.
2. Give Chores Commensurate With Their Age
Do not give chores to a child that is beyond his or her capabilities. Chores given to children must be age-friendly. For Instance, asking a 7-year old child to wash a car is not age-friendly. Though watering the plants, and keeping at least their rooms clean and organised could be a few things you can set them to. Also, do not forget to let them in on the chores they are interested in doing. Read which household chores you can do with children.
3. Be a Perfectionist But Give Time
Children may not get it right the first time and may not meet up with your expectations immediately. Learn to praise your children for the good parts and encourage them to try again. Remember that apart from you, they are also judging themselves.
Also, thank them for their efforts in helping you around the house. It makes children feel good and willing to take up more responsibilities.
4. Eliminate Distractions
During chores, put off things like television and keep mobile or smartphones away. It’s better to set an example, as children tend to follow parents’ actions more than words. While you do things together, remember the child will be as focused on the task at hand only as much as you are.
5. Family Time’s Best for Family Stories
The stories of follies and fun of your family are no less entertaining for children than the most renowned storybooks. In fact, family stories help strengthen the foundation of their character and family bonds.
Family time is the best opportunity to spend together sharing the stories from your own life and even from your parents. I just love the faces and attention my children pay whenever I share any of my experiences from the times before their birth.
So moms, take a break and let your kids take the charge sometimes. You don’t have to do all the chores in one day and believe it or not, your kids do want to please you more than anything. So, ask and you shall receive. Read how to get children moving about the house chores.
Do share your experience with your child helping around the house in the comments.
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2. apa.org > Kids & Stress - American Psychology Association
3. apa.org/news > Stress not Always Bad - American Psychology Association
4. nimh.nih.gov > Effects of Stress - National Institute of Mental Health USA
5. nimhans.ac.in > Academic Stress in Kids - National Institute of Mental Health & Neurosciences
6. scholararticles.net > Parenting Styles Research Paper - Scholar Articles Net