I always find after Christmas really tough. My energy and motivation gets really low and I find it so hard to parent. Do you have any advice on this?
Thank you for getting in touch with Ask Robyn and telling us about what is going on for you. You have said you find this time of year tough and find it hard to stay motivated and that you feel that this is impacting on your parenting.
We hear this quite often with other parents and it is important that you know you are not alone with this feeling. It may also come up as feeling guilty or ashamed as everyone else on social media appears so full of energy and motivation. Everyone’s own feelings with this may come up for many different reasons. We wonder if there is a particular reason why you think you find this time of year tough? As we have mentioned, it is common to feel this way and it can be for a number of reasons such as the shorter and darker days impacting our energy, the cold weather, Christmas in general can be hard as it adds a financial stress and also with remembering lost loved ones. It is important to check in with the feelings that are coming up for you and reach out for support when needed. Do you have a friend or family member you can talk to about this? They may have experienced something similar and thus be able to help or even provide advice on what has helped them or even just an empathetic ear.
This time of year, can also be hard as we can be out of routine with celebrations and school holidays, try and introduce a routine for you and your family and introduce some activities to help with this. It may include having a healthy breakfast together at a certain time or going for a walk as a family in the afternoon. We have an article on our website that you may find helpful: www.ispcc.ie/6-things-to-get-you-through-the-january-blues/
One key area that impacts on energy is mental health, it may help to introduce some other habits that help boost your mental health such as speaking to friends or family, eating healthier, reducing alcohol and sugary foods, getting enough sleep and also getting some exercise and fresh air. It can be hard to manage all of this while also being a parent but it may be a nice target to try focus on one of these to help you in this area. If this low energy and motivation is impacting you significantly it may be good to contact your GP for additional advice.
We hope you have found this helpful. If you would like to talk more about this, you can contact ISPCC’s Parent Support Line which can be contacted by email to [email protected] or by phone from Monday to Friday 9am – 1pm on 01 522 4300
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