How can you boost your spirits and deal with mental health issues during the coldest, darkest time of the year?
Winter is a time of long dark nights, cold weather, and right now, isolation. It’s easy for things to feel grim during the winter, but especially when you have small children.
How does this affect parental mental health?
As parents, we’re naturally conditioned to think first and foremost of our children. Especially in difficult times and we can neglect our own mental health.
The lighter days and brighter weather of other months gives you more flexibility to go out, bump into other parents at the park, or the shops. To meet with friends and go for a walk. So, if you’re stuck in doors, how can you get a boost and feel more connected?
The impact of parental mental health on parenting capacity
If your mental health is affecting you day to day, it can impact your relationships with your partner, or family members. It may also affect your ability to do all the many things that fall under your role as a parent.
I know, this can be another thing to add to your worry box, especially if you’re feeling anxious already. But looking at it from a logical point of view, as a parent you have a lot on your plate! It’s understandable to feel overwhelmed at times. It’s also completely ok to seek help if you’re struggling. Just as you would with your physical health.
Is it just about educating parents on mental health?
We can all learn new ways to deal with our mental health. And just like our physical wellbeing, our mental health is in a constant state of flux. Although that’s to be expected, if things swing beyond this natural ebb and flow it can become difficult to cope.
There are some ways we can manage our mental health ourselves, including:
Finding mental health support for parents
Sometimes, even carving out time for self-care rituals doesn’t cut it. And if you’re in that place, that’s ok too. You can get support. Here are some options: