Ever since it started, the pandemic — and its resultant lockdowns — has caused stress. The idea of losing a sense of normalcy has overwhelmed people, causing emotional distress and some physical manifestations of it, too.
For mothers, especially, the period has been difficult, and it continues to be so. Tasked with taking care of the house and juggling many responsibilities, mothers are often left exhausted.
And while Mother’s Day is all about making them feel special and slightly-less stressed, Dr Preeti Parakh, psychiatrist and head of Mpower: The Centre, Kolkata, shares with indianexpress.com some simple tips which they can put to use, to beat the stress of COVID-19.
If you are a mother, this is for you; read on.
* Routine life: Establishing a routine for everyone in the family provides a structured environment for the children and reduces the stress for parents. Maintaining regular timings for meals, sleep, exercise, games and studies can help children adjust to the new normal, and also ensure mothers get their chores done while children are busy elsewhere.
* Pandemic lessons: Explaining Covid-appropriate behavior and precautions to children patiently will help ensure their compliance and reduce the pressure on the mother of keeping everyone safe. It is also important to practise the same so that children learn by example.
* Making connections: Connecting with other mothers helps form a support system. Sometimes just talking to someone who is facing the same problems makes one feel lighter. Connecting with the child’s teachers can also be helpful.
* Discipline: Mothers need to tactfully discipline children when they misbehave. A child throwing tantrums can be extremely stressful for a mother who has a hundred things to do. Sometimes just ignoring bad behaviour helps. Distracting the child with some other activity can also help. Good behaviour should always be appreciated as it motivates children.
* Family time: Shared family activities like playing indoor games, cooking or gardening together can be relaxing. This can improve family bonding and reduce stress levels for everyone in the family.
* The role of dads: Ensure the involvement of the father in parenting and share responsibilities with him.
* Me-time: Find some time for yourself. Use it to do activities that are enjoyable and relaxing. Take care of your health, eat and sleep on time and exercise regularly. After all, what is good for children is also good for their mothers.