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Parenting stress: 12 evidence-based tips for making life better

parenting stress

Parenting is an amazing and joyful adventure, but it can also be tough and stressful. The demands of raising children, managing daily responsibilities, and dealing with unforeseen challenges can lead to parental stress and these are also the challenges of parenting. Today, we will explore the problem of parenting stress, its impact on parents and children, and 12 evidence-based tips to make life better for parents.

The Impacts of Parenting Stress:

Impact on Parents:

  1. Parenting stress may cause emotions of worry, hopelessness, and irritation, negatively impacting the mental health of parents.
  2. Overstress can result in physical health problems such as headaches, insomnia, and decreased immunity.
  3. Stress may strain relationships with partners, family members, and friends, as parents may become irritable and less able to communicate effectively.

Impact on Children:

  1. A stressed parent may have difficulty regulating emotions, impacting their ability to respond appropriately to their child’s needs.
  2. Parenting stress can lead to inconsistent discipline and supervision, potentially contributing to behaviour issues in children.
  3. High levels of parental stress may hinder the development of a strong, secure parent-child attachment.

Parenting Problems and Solutions:

It is natural for parents to experience stress, so it is critical to discover healthy methods to cope with it. Here are 12 evidence-based tips for parenting problems and solutions for improving the lives of parents and their children.

1. Practice Mindfulness and Self Compassion:

Mindfulness involves being present at the moment without judgement. Parents can reduce stress and develop an awareness of themselves by engaging in mindfulness behaviours like meditation or deep breathing exercises.

Additionally, practising self-compassion, and being kind to oneself during challenging times, can be beneficial in managing parenting problems.

Problem: Many parents struggle to find time for self-care and mindfulness amidst their busy schedules.

Solution: Allocate a few minutes each day for mindfulness exercises, even if it means waking up a bit earlier or finding moments during breaks.

2. Seek Social Support:

Connect with other parents, friends, or support groups to share experiences and receive emotional support. Talking to someone who understands can alleviate feelings of isolation and stress.

Problem: Some parents may hesitate to ask for help or fear being judged.

Solution: Remember that seeking support is a sign of strength, not weakness. Reach out to friends, family, or parenting communities for assistance.

3. Set Realistic Expectations:

Acknowledge that perfection is unattainable in parenting. Set realistic expectations for yourself and your children. Allow room for mistakes and remember that learning and growth come from experiences.

Problem: Parents may feel pressure to be the “perfect” parent or compare themselves to others.

Solution: Focus on the progress you and your children make rather than aiming for perfection. Celebrate small achievements and efforts.

4. Practise Positive Parenting:

Utilise positive discipline strategies that emphasise empathy, understanding, and effective communication. Positive parenting fosters a secure and loving parent-child relationship, reducing stress for both parties.

Problem: Parents may resort to punitive discipline out of frustration or stress.

Solution: Take a deep breath before responding to challenging behaviours. Use positive reinforcement and open communication to guide children’s behaviour.

5. Engage in Physical Activity:

Regular exercise is a natural stress reliever and mood booster. Physical activity can help parents to decrease stress, enhance energy, and improve overall health.

Problem: Finding time for exercise can be difficult for busy parents.

Solution: Introduce physical exercise into your everyday routines, such as going on family walks, dancing with your kids, or doing yoga together.

6. Delegate Responsibilities:

Sharing household and parenting responsibilities with a partner or family members lightens the load and reduces stress for parents.

Problem: Some parents may hesitate to delegate tasks, fearing they won’t be done “right.”

Solution: Recognize that sharing responsibilities promotes teamwork and allows for more quality time with children. Communicate openly with your partner about dividing tasks.

7. Create Routines:

Establishing consistent daily routines can provide a sense of predictability and structure for both parents and children, reducing stress and improving time management.

Problem: Building routines can be challenging with varying schedules and children’s changing needs.

Solution: Start with simple routines for essential activities like meals and bedtime. Adjust as needed, and involve children in creating their routines.

8. Prioritise Sleep:

Adequate sleep is vital for managing stress and maintaining overall health. Ensure that both parents and children get enough restful sleep each night.

Problem: Parents may sacrifice their sleep to attend to various responsibilities.

Solution: Make sleep a priority and establish healthy bedtime habits. Set consistent bedtimes for children and yourself.

9. Limit Screen Time:

Excessive screen time can contribute to stress and disrupt family interactions. Set reasonable limits on screen usage for both parents and children.

Problem: Screen time can become a convenient distraction or “babysitter” for children.

Solution: Encourage alternative activities like reading, outdoor play, or arts and crafts to reduce screen time reliance.

10. Practice Time Management:

Effective time management can alleviate stress by allowing parents to balance work, family, and personal time efficiently.

Problem: Juggling multiple responsibilities can lead to feeling overwhelmed and rushed.

Solution: Use calendars, planners, or digital tools to organise schedules and prioritise tasks. Break down large tasks into smaller, manageable steps.

11. Engage in Playful Parenting:

Play is a powerful stress reliever for both children and parents. Engage in playful activities together to promote bonding and reduce tension. It is one of the toughest challenges of parenting.

Problem: Some parents may feel guilty about taking time away from responsibilities to play.

Solution: Recognize that play is a valuable aspect of parenting. Spend quality playtime with your children without distractions.

12. Seek Professional Help:

If parenting stress becomes overwhelming or affects daily functioning, consider seeking support from a mental health professional or counsellor.

Problem: Stigma or fear of judgement may prevent some parents from seeking professional help.

Solution: Remember that seeking professional support is a courageous step towards better mental health and well-being. Mental health professionals can provide valuable tools and coping strategies.


Parenting stress is a natural part of life, but it is important for parents to take safety steps to deal with it. Remember that taking responsibility for your own health benefits not just you but also your children, since it lays the foundations for positive and supportive parents and their kids’ connection. Follow these evidence-based parenting practices to improve your parenting experience for both you and your children. Visit EuroSchool to know more.

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