What can you do about parental burnout?

In the last post you may have recognized yourself. You know you’re burned out, you know why, and you’re afraid of the consequences, but you don’t know what to do.

The solutions I’m about to suggest are anything but simple. For most of us, these changes take hard, deep, continuous work. I wish I could wave a magic wand and erase the problems all of us face. But, I promise you, the hard work will be worth it. ⁣

1. Ask for help. Ask your partner, neighbor, friend, parents, or anyone else who loves you. You are not a burden. Humans were built for community. One day you’ll return the favor, trust me! Maybe you need an errand, maybe you need someone to your child for an hour, or maybe you need someone to help you stay accountable with your new, slower lifestyle. Whatever it is, ask. ⁣

2. Seek professional help. If you’ve never seen a counselor, now is the time to start. Remember what I said about hard work? If you’re experiencing burnout, you likely have baggage that needs to be unpacked with the help of an empathetic, objective, and well-trained 3rd party. ⁣

3. Reject self-blame. You are not alone. If you’re not the only one experiencing this, that means it is not a problem entirely of your own making. Reject the notion this is your fault. Not only is self-blame unfair, it’s also not making your burnout any better. ⁣

4. Tweak what’s not working. Figure out what’s not working and make adjustments. Are you overcommitted? Are your kids? Do you need to outsource your grocery shopping? Do you need to excuse yourself from a committee or a volunteer activity? Are you taking on the emotional needs of others? (If so, learning to set emotional boundaries may be some of that baggage you need to unpack.) ⁣

Make a plan to take one step forward. You can do this.

Do you need a counselor? Try Psychology Today or Therapy Den to find your perfect match. If you need immediate help, please call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Hotline or text CONNECT to 741741.

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