Parents, your wellbeing matters!
There’s a lot going on. Your office has closed. You are separated from an ill family member. Your child’s badminton class is canceled indefinitely. The hamster you just got them for Christmas has to be put down. Right when schools go back online, your wifi router breathes its dying breath. Now you’ve got a headache, and is that a sore throat? Is it from COVID, exhaustion, or yelling?
Take a moment. Take notice of how you are feeling, take notice of your own needs. Put the oxygen mask to your own face, first. Life as a parent is busy. Add your professional responsibilities, extended family, and throw in a pandemic, it’s easy to forget that it all starts with taking care of yourself. You can’t give if you are running on empty. Here are 5 Ways parents can address their own wellbeing in periods of crisis and uncertainty.
- Catching up one-on-one with a close friend is a powerful way to connect. Our devices give the illusion of connection, but can often be a source of anxiety and distraction. Make time over the next week to see a good friend in person or schedule a phone call.
- Learn or improve a skill – not for work or because you have to, but just for the joy of it. Have you always wanted to be a better painter, baker, or learn a language? With limitations on external entertainment and travel, now might be a good time to do it.
- Hong Kong’s hiking trails are still wide open. Take a walk – without the kids! Soak in the majesty and expanse of the territory from beautiful vantage points. Feel the renewed vigour that comes with being active.
- We are all fortunate in many ways, and those advantages put us in a position to give our time or resources to those in greater need. Packing up items for donation or volunteering your time are good ways to help others while also helping yourself by refreshing your perspective.
- We are often doing, and spend very little time just being. Practicing meditation, mindfulness, prayer, or even just sitting long enough to listen to your favourite song, are all ways that we can take notice, and cultivate a greater sense of awareness of our inner landscape.
The first (and arguably best) thing you can do to support your child is to make sure you are truly taking care of yourself, meeting your own needs for wellbeing, so that your own resources are enriched. Kung Hei Fat Choy! I hope you find time to refresh and replenish, ready to surmount whatever challenges the rest of the term might bring us.
Vice-Principal, Guidance & Wellbeing