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Global Day for Parents 2019: 7 stress-busting tips for single parents

On this Global Day of Parents follow these tips to bring down stress. ©Shutterstock

Nobody ever said parenting was easy. It's an uphill task and more so, for single parents. On this Global Day of Parents, we share ideas to help you stay a happily single parent.

The Global Day of Parents is celebrated worldwide every year on the 1st of June. This day was instituted by the United Nations General Assembly 2012 to honour the ones who raised us. The Global Day of Parents gives encourages good parenting practices, and draws our attention to the tireless dedication with which they brought us up. Parents are people who deserve to be celebrated every day. However, designating a specific day to pay tribute to them gives children the scope to make them feel special.

Yes, every parent deserves to feel special because they are. The love they fill us with is unconditional. The efforts they put in year after year to give us the right direction is immeasurable. And, it's not easy, to say the least. Nobody ever said parenting was easy. It's an uphill task, and more so, for single parents. The Global Day of Parents gives us an opportunity to commemorate them too.

Some estimates suggest that around 320 million children are living in single parent households, globally. Single parenthood is sometimes a choice and at others a circumstance (if you are widowed or divorced). Whatever the reason be, solo parenting is utterly demanding, unmanageably hectic and immensely stressful. That's the reality. Period. If you are a single mom or dad, we share 7 suggestions with you on the Global Day of Parents to bring down stress and give you back your sanity and balance. Happy parenting!

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Seek support

If you are a single parent, you need the help of others to take care of your kid when you are busy with work. Don't feel ashamed or hesitate to call your friends and other family members for support. Also, there will be times when you will not be in the right frame of mind to take crucial decisions. May be you are too overwhelmed. Talk to the people you rely upon at such times. Share your situation for a different perspective. This will equip you to take better decisions.

Get a grip on your finances

Raising a kid on single income, or relying on an ex-spouse for financial support can be a major stress factor for a single parent. That's why it's crucial to take budget decisions well in advance. You need to plan for long-term investments to fund health emergencies and higher education. Also, make judicious career decisions to strengthen your financial muscle.

Try to maintain a routine

Make sure that you and your kid eat your meals at a designated time each day. Also, try to inculcate the habit of going to bed at 9 in the night and waking up at 6 in the morning every day. If you can manage to build such routine for various family activities, you will be able to manage your time better. This will alleviate stress. Also, your kid will feel a sense of security while understanding the importance of discipline. If you miss being with your kid on workdays, do not compensate for it by breaking the routine. Instead, plan well to spend quality time over the weekend to make up for the missed time through the week.

Involve kids in household work

As a single parent, you are already stressed out about work and managing your family. Lighten your load by taking the help of your kids with small household chores. Engage your little ones in chores that do not require the usage of sharp, fragile or heated objects and fire. Take help from them for sorting and arrangement. Your children can also help you in cleaning. All these will help them develop essential life skills.

Take that much-needed break

Handling work and a kid all by yourself can be extremely hectic. Sometimes you need to take a break from your parenting tasks to come back recharged. This will help you spend more quality time with your child. Leaving her for a couple of days with your parents could be a good. It will give you your much-needed 'me time'. Catching with a friend, or reading your favourite book without interruption in your 'me time' will help you beat stress. Going for a solo weekend trip can also help.

Get rid of your guilt

As a single parent it is easy for you to feel guilty or disappointed about the things you cannot provide for your kids. Inability to spend quality time is the most common guilt every single parent suffers from. But you need to understand that being a lone parent is a difficult task in itself and you shouldn't be hard on yourself. You should shift your focus towards your achievements as a parent. Remember the last time you two watched a good time together or a book that you read together? Make friends with other single parents. Share and discuss your emotions with them to get a fresh perspective on them.

Make sure your kid stays disciplined

Lack of discipline in your kid child can take your stress levels up by quite a few notches. You are always worried about the way he might be behaving in school or in your absence. You can also get hyper each time he breaks the rule. In case you are divorced or separated, talk to your partner about certain disciplines that your child should follow when he or she is with him. Also, if you have a caregiver at home, make sure she is well aware of the rules you want your child to follow. Train her to encourage your child to follow discipline.

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