When I was about to become a parent for the first time (actually exactly around this time 6 years ago!) I ripped a page out of a magazine that listed 30 essential things you needed to have before baby came. I had nothing. Most of it was medical related and so I marched over to the pharmacist and in near hysterics, explained that I was having my first child in a week and was so overwhelmed and had nothing on the list and felt so unprepared and I don't know what a nasal aspirator is etc. etc. etc. He kindly looked at me and said, "I have three kids and I have never used half the stuff on this list. You're going to be fine."
I think it's easy to get really overwhelmed in any new circumstance, especially as one as uncharted as parenthood. It can be a daunting experience, raising a human being, let alone more than one. So now as a slightly more experienced mom (I now know what a nasal aspirator is! I have never needed to use one!) I share my top tips on how to have kids and stay sane, whether you have one, or what can feel like a dozen like my soon to be 5 : )
1. TREAT PARENTING LIKE A PROFESSION
I invest a ton of time becoming a better business owner, learning social media strategies and going to conferences to better my craft. How much do I do to become a better parent? I have written on this topic in the past and while it might not be in the form of a course, I think it's important to actively sharpen the saw as Dr. Covey would say on parenting strategies. And I'm talking beyond parenting strategies like discipline or sleep habits- things like cooking healthy meals, learning new juicing recipes, and other practical household tips as well.
2. INVEST IN YOUR HOME
I talked a lot about this in my presentation this past weekend at The Baby Show– your home is the stage where your memories are made. And of course as an interior design pro I am going to argue the value that beauty will bring to your life. But beyond physical beauty, invest in a well organized home. With soon to be 5 kids (6 if you include my husband) I simply don't have time to waste searching for things. I really just want to get back to living life and loving my family- so to help you out read my posts on Interior Design and decluttering and getting your house finished in 48-hours.
3. KEEP PERSPECTIVE AND REMEMBER TO LAUGH
Parenting for sure can feel like a marathon at times but perhaps you could think of it like a series of sprints. There are hard periods, of which I have MANY stories, but they pass. EVERYTHING PASSES. Remember to laugh because parenting can also be quite entertaining.
4. HAVE A LIST OF QUICK MOOD ELEVATORS
For the times that feel like THEY WILL NEVER PASS, have super quick emotional pick me ups. It might be a song you love on your iPhone, an inspirational quote that refocuses you, or take a peek at a few tips I have from this post on running on empty.
5. TELL YOUR SPOUSE YOU LOVE THEM MORE
This strategy is my favourite. Tell your spouse you love them. You think they are hot. You appreciate them. Do it often, and more than you think.
What tips do you have for staying sane while parenting? Love to know in the comments below.