Stress strains relationships. Stress makes parenting significantly more difficult. Stress has serious health ramifications. Stress kills. Do we have your attention?
The top ten causes of stress, according to the American Psychological Association (2013) American Institute of Stress, are job pressure, money, health, relationships, poor nutrition, media overload, and sleep deprivation.
We’re cognizant of stress and the dangers it presents to our health, our psychological wellbeing, and our families, yet we persist in an approach to life, and parenting, that plays fast and loose with all seven top causes. Here at All Pro Dad, we suggest the following 5 ways of dealing with stress to stay cool:
We like what our friend Bob did when he turned down a promotion that meant a move. This let the kids stay in the neighborhood, schools, and faith community they enjoyed with a sense of mutual commitment. Extra money versus a family-friendly life is always a choice worth thinking about.
2. Take a step toward health.
As a family, make the commitment to nurture both a healthy lifestyle and a healthy budget. We can move toward both by taking small steps. The benefits, in terms of stress reduction, are not only cost-effective but future cost-saving.
3. Nurture primary relationships.
That feud you’re having with your co-worker may well be killing you. Putting off counseling with your wife is raising your blood pressure and costing you sleep. Being at odds with your kids is giving you an upset stomach—not to mention the irritability.
4. Manage media consumption.
Too much media consumption not only causes stress; it disrupts sleep patterns, family relationships, and productivity. That’s both you and the kids. Make a plan, and then stick with it.
We can’t overstate the importance of applying the basic tenets of spiritual faith to our stress-filled lives as dads. Prayer changes things, mostly starting with you. Here are 10 Things to Pray for and with Your Child.
Related Resource: 10 Things to Do to Help Your Marriage Feel Less Stressed
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Huddle Up Question
Huddle up with your family, serve up a round of ice cream, and then ask everyone to share something that made them upset during the day. Now brainstorm creative responses. Remember, there are no wrong answers in brainstorming.