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Healthy Daily Routines for Parents who are Confident & Calm

Inside: These healthy daily routines for parents encourage positive, mindful parenting that raises well-adjusted and emotionally healthy children. 

I fondly remember the days of staying up till 2 am only to wake up at 6, throw my hair up in a ponytail, grab a PopTart, and head out the door to class/work.

I mean, how did I not even need the coffee??

Healthy Daily routines parents

It seems when you enter the stage of parenthood, it’s not only gravity that starts working against you… but biology too.  With increased age and stress level, it quickly becomes clear that you can’t get away with the same stuff you used to (while also remaining a calm sane parent).

Your overworked nervous system, brain, and body need more in this stage of life (and your dark under-eye circles and level of heightened irritation will make sure to remind you of this). 

Luckily, there is a simple and powerful way to approach taking better care of yourself and becoming a better more positive parent, by adding powerful and effective healthy daily routines to your to-do list. 

Healthy daily routines that will make you a better parent

Here are 10 research-backed good daily habits that help you achieve a sense of calm, balance, and confidence.

Not coincidentally, all of these healthy routines are exactly what will equip you to be a confident and level headed parent who practices positive parenting techniques

Green is great

There’s good reason interest in gardening skyrocketed during the pandemic, the process of nurturing a living thing and watching it grow brings us into the here and now, and allows us to literally touch a symbol of peace and hope that not much else in our world can. 

Daily Routines for Positive Parents 

Plants and gardening have been found to improve your mood, reduce stress levels, and even increase focus. No matter the season, there are always endless indoor and outdoor gardening opportunities.  

Pick some baby houseplants on a dime at Ikea and find some cozy pots for them. Learn how to do some easy winter seed sewing to prep for Spring.

Research and learn what helps your plant babies to thrive, and soon you’ll find they’re helping you thrive too. 

 

Walk towards the light

Your body needs a healthy dose of light for certain parenthood essentials; healthy sleep and a balanced mood. 

If you can get into the sunlight for a short period each day, not only will you be nurturing your body’s natural circadian rhythms, you’ll be increasing the chances of being a fun parent (and not a moody one) when your kids get home from school. 

These light therapy lamps work amazingly for many during the long winter months in darker climates, as research has shown their ability to help boost mood and lower symptoms of seasonal depression and anxiety. 

Reading fiction boosts your brainpower

Who knew that actually reading the books at bookclub could improve your parenting? Studies have actually shown that reading fiction improves everything from happiness to creativity. 

“In a 2018 study, researchers reviewed experiments on the effect of reading fiction. They found that it modestly improves people’s capacity to understand and mentally react to other individuals and social situations. And by and large, that was after reading a single story.” (Psychology Today)

Reading fiction as a part of your healthy daily routine will not only give your emotional brain a reprieve from the stresses of parenting, it might also make you a more reasonable and empathetic parent when you hear those magical words, “he started it!”. 

(If you want a little more direction and comradery, join me over in the Peanut Blossom online Bookclub.)

Healthy Daily Routines Parents

Nature is calling

You know that spending time in the great outdoors is an important part of a healthy routine for your child’s emotional well-being, but it’s just as important for you.

Instead of hiding in the bathroom when you need some space from the littles (I mean it’s a little gross when you think about it), why not bundle up, grab a mug of coffee, and take a walk around the block? It won’t take long for the research-proven positive impacts of fresh air to take effect on your mood and patience.

Discipline them without emotional damage >> The Positive Discipline Set for Parents is 40 % off for a limited time

How to get kids to listen

Your body is meant to move

Lots of snapping at my kids for normal ‘kid’ behaviors is typically the first sign I’m feeling irritable…and that my body is commanding me to move. 

“Exercise reduces levels of the body’s stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body’s natural painkillers and mood elevators.” (Harvard Health)

If you find it hard to get started, try breaking exercise up into a few smaller chunks throughout the day, or moving through a list of pre-planned exercises while watching your favorite show. 

Harness the power of positive thinking

If your life was a house, it’s foundation would be made up of your thoughts.

There’s a massive amount of research on the power of positive thinking, and when it comes to practicing positive parenting tips, reframing your thoughts is the first place to start. 

A great daily practice is choosing a thought/mantra that encourages you and then repeating it throughout the day. 

My friend Erica over at the Life On Purpose Movement has created a beautiful Authenticity Calendar which comes with an inspiring phrase/quote on a beautiful graphic to change out every day. 

healthy daily routines parents

 

Nourish your senses

Your senses are the gateway to both stress and relaxation. While you may not always be able to control the noise level around you, you can control a lot of your sensory input each day.

Why not balance out the insanely overstimulating circus performing around you, with some sensory treats?

The Olfactory sense is directly correlated with the brain’s emotion center which is why so many find it soothing or invigorating to use essential oils or scented candles. 

Added to the list of pleasurable smells are things that soothe your eyes (flowers), ears (music), taste (if you eat certain foods when stressed you likely prefer those textures), and touch (soft blankets, clothes).

All of these small acts of self-care can provide calming and grounding sensory input to your brain, allowing you to feel more zen and level-headed throughout the day.  

Kick it to the Curb

Peanut butter and jelly. Kids and clutter. While some degree of messiness is to be expected in a home with tiny humans, a consistently cluttered space has been found to increase stress and procrastination and decrease productivity.

Setting the timer for just 5 minutes a day as part of your daily habits, to go through your most lived-in space and get rid of clutter, will immediately positively impact your level of stress and anxiety.  

Need a little support and accountability? Join Zina from Becoming Unbusy this weekend for the Decluttering Challenge.

healthy daily routines parents

Related resource >> 25 Mindfulness Activities for Kids (That they’ll actually want to do)

Mindful healthy eating

How many bites of cold mac n cheese have you ingested over the years without even realizing you’ve eaten? I know, I’d prefer not to attempt quantifying that either.

Being mindful and eating with intention has been proven to have many psychological and physical health benefits and is even harder to achieve when you’re also feeding tiny mouths that are “starving!!” (despite being fed a mere 90 minutes ago). 

“Think about what you’d like to eat. Think about how hungry you are, and prepare a plate that reflects that amount of hunger. Then sit down and pay attention to the food – how it smells, how it feels in your mouth, how it tastes and whether you’re enjoying it,” -Monica Meadows US News & World Report.

Find moments of mindfulness

Meditation is a toothbrush for your brain. It provides the daily maintenance and cleaning necessary to keep you out of autopilot/reactivity mode (which is what your brain defaults to when overwhelmed and stressed) which also leads to parent beast-mode.

You could read hundreds of articles about the positive of benefits of mindfulness to improve your emotional and physical health, but instead just take 5 minutes to go download Insight Timer (a free and very prolific meditation app) and choose a simple 3-5 minute guided meditation on the theme of your choice.

Other time-efficient ways to practice mindfulness (or paying attention on purpose to the current moment and our state of being) are journaling, yoga, or prayer. 

Healthy Daily Routines Lead to Positive Parenting

I know it’s hard to find the time (and brain space) to create new healthy daily routines, and that it’s far easier to default to the care of your needy offspring. 

I know you want to be a wonderful caregiver and parent so it’s important to remind yourself that the best caregivers have in fact, taken care of themselves first. 

Despite feeling like there’s only time in the day to care for the needs of your little humans, remember that you are still a human yourself and that your needs deserve to be met too.

 

Other articles you’d love:

10 Everyday Ways to Improve Your Child’s Behavior and Mood with Integrative Health Tips

75 Calm Down Strategies for Kids that work! {Printable}

How to get kids to listen without Yelling

How to Make Your Family a Safe Haven Your Child (for life)

 

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