The Joy of Simple Parenting: 5 Tips to Lighten the Load31 March 2023 | After Your Baby is Born | By Lisa H and Evelyne M
As a parent, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the constant barrage of social pressure. Parents often feel an astounding sense of required perfectionism. As it turns out, what looks easy on Instagram, is actually really hard!
Here are five tips from our expert Evelyne Mayer on how to simplify – and bring more joy – to your family life.
Evelyne is a mom of three and has 15 years of experience in early intervention, teaching, counseling, inclusion, and therapy in the special education sector. She is also the founder of wunderflix — a video app for parents that simplifies the complex video editing process into a simple, family-friendly app, making video memories accessible to tired, busy, and stressed parents so they can cherish their family stories as home movies.
Here's the problem: Social media platforms, full of carefully curated images, portray the illusion of flawless parenting. This constant exposure to an unattainable ideal creates a cycle of stress and pressure for many parents who strive to keep up.
We hear about amazing two-layer unicorn birthday cakes, fun holiday trips on perfect white beaches, matching family-event outfits, delightful garden barbecues, and hand- crafted seasonal home decorations.
Initially, you may feel inspired to join in, but you may soon realize the immense work it takes and the limited time you have. Your to-do list grows, and the pressure becomes suffocating.
You may feel caught between wanting to be the "perfect" parent, like others seem to be, and the limits of your own capacity. You want the great cake, the joyful trip, the friendly gatherings, and the seasonal crafts.
Guess what? There's an alternative. Embrace the "simple way" to reduce stress and enjoy more time with your family!
Cake: Use a baking mix, and decorate with Smarties or other simple toppings.
Memorable trip: Visit a nearby forest or park for a fun walk together.
Barbecue: Host a potluck-style gathering, and ask each friend to bring a dish.
Birthday party: Keep it small and simple with fewer guests, minimal decorations, and fun games using household items.
Seasonal decorations: Reuse items from last year, and create straightforward crafts with the children.
It's about spending time with your family, having fun, and getting closer.
Less hustle. Less stress. More time with your children.
Reducing stress is another important benefit of simplifying parenthood. When we're not constantly rushing from one task to the next, we can feel more relaxed and at ease.
This can have a (positive!) ripple effect on our entire family, as we model healthy coping mechanisms for our children and create a more peaceful home environment.
Also, when we parents are less overwhelmed, we can manage all emotions around us, calmly and stably. At the end of the day, we have more energy, and we are more productive in other areas of our lives.
So, let go of the need for perfection if it's stressing you our, and discover the joy in embracing simplicity.
The simple way may be your perfect way.
Try it out!
Peruse our list of activities for English speaking families with kids of all ages – from babies to teens.