Why parents should add ‘relax’ to their to-do list
In a world obsessed with chronicling every little achievement and milestone – is the Grade Three graduation ceremony this week or next? – many parents have a hard time taking a deep breath and just letting things be. And they are passing the anxiety on to their children.
Parenting expert Ellen Galinsky spoke at the Aspen Ideas Festival this week about the results from a survey that asked children: “What message would you like to give the parents of America?” The top wish, The Atlantic reported, was for their parents to be less tired and stressed. Even Tiger Mom Amy Chua, who took part in the talk, agreed that things have gotten out of hand. And if she can relax – she once made her daughter play a difficult piano piece for hours on end with no food or bathroom breaks – then there’s no reason everyone else can’t take a breather.
“Parents need to ditch their own stress,” says Burlington, Ont.-based Opti-Mom blogger Laurel Crossley “They model stress and stressful behaviours to their children, so stressed-out parents create stressed-out kids.”
Easier said than done – but as we head into another activity-filled weekend, why not shoot for a more relaxing time at home?