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Q:

How do you balance your own personal interests with the needs of your children as a stay-at-home parent?

Hi everyone,

I've been a stay-at-home parent for a few years now and while I love being able to spend time with my children, I find that I struggle to balance my own personal interests with their needs. I often feel guilty if I take time for myself to pursue my hobbies or passions.

I enjoy reading, painting, and going for runs, but it can be difficult to find time for these activities when I am also responsible for taking care of my children. I don't want to neglect my kids, but I also want to take care of myself.

How do you find a balance between personal interests and parenting responsibilities? Do you have any tips for making time for yourself without feeling guilty? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance!

All Replies

vmurray

Hi there,

I can definitely relate to your situation as a stay-at-home parent. I am a mother of two young children and I have found it challenging to balance my own interests with their needs. One thing I have found helpful is to schedule blocks of time during the week dedicated to my hobbies. For example, every Tuesday and Thursday morning, I go for a run while my kids play at the park with their nanny. This way, I am able to prioritize my own health while also ensuring that my children are being cared for.

In addition, I try to involve my kids in some of my hobbies. For example, I have a designated art space in our home where we can all paint together. It's a great way for us to bond and for me to pursue my passion for painting while still being present with my children.

Finally, I have found that it's important to let go of the guilt associated with taking time for myself. I try to remind myself that I am a better parent when I am happy and fulfilled, and pursuing my own interests is an important part of that.

I hope some of these tips prove to be helpful for you. Remember that finding a balance between your own interests and your children's needs is an ongoing process, and it's important to be patient and compassionate with yourself along the way.

angeline71

Hello there,

As a stay-at-home mom of two, I can definitely empathize with you on this topic. I have found that there are times when it seems like there are not enough hours in the day for me to take care of my children and take care of myself by pursuing my interests.

One thing that works well for me is to incorporate my children into my hobbies. For instance, I love cooking and baking. I try to involve my kids in the kitchen with me, whether it's measuring ingredients or stirring the batter. It helps them learn new skills, while also giving me a chance to indulge in my passion for cooking.

Another strategy that has worked for me is to make use of nap times and bedtime. I have found that if I set up my work or hobby areas ahead of time, like prepping my painting supplies or laying out my yoga mat and workout gear, I can take quick advantage of the downtime during nap times and bedtime.

For myself, I have had to learn to let go of the guilt of taking time for myself. It is not selfish to want time to engage in activities that bring us happiness and fulfillment. It's important to remember that being a stay-at-home parent is a full-time job, and we all deserve a little break once in a while.

I hope that these tips have been helpful for you, and I wish you the best for finding balance and joy in both your parenting and personal pursuits.

adah48

Hey there,

I am a stay-at-home dad with one child and have been through the same dilemma as you. While being with my child is the most important thing to me, I also understand the need for some personal space to de-stress and recharge. However, I've learned that most of the time, it's not about balancing your own interests with the needs of your children at the same time, but rather combining the two to make the most of your time.

For instance, I like to read, and I've found that my child enjoys sitting down with me and flipping through children's books while I read different novels in front of them. It's a win-win situation because while I get to read, they get some positive reading time as well. Another example is taking walks with my child around the neighborhood, which not only gets them out of the house but also helps me to be active.

It's also essential to take advantage of naptimes and bedtimes. In those quiet moments, I choose to engage in hobbies that can be done quickly, such as writing down a few new ideas for a blog post, playing a game or two on my phone, or simply relaxing with some mindful breathing exercises.

Finally, it's crucial to remember that your child's needs should always come first. It may seem tough at times, but it's all about finding a balance that works for both you and your child.

I hope these tips help you find that balance while still enjoying your personal interests.

angelica91

Hello everyone,

As a stay-at-home parent of two, I know firsthand the struggle of balancing personal interests with parenting responsibilities. One method I use to achieve stability is incorporating my children into my activities.

For instance, I enjoy gardening and involving my children in it has become something we all enjoy. They like to help me water the plants, and it's an excellent way for them to learn more about nature while I pursue my interest.

Another tip is to multitask, which if done correctly, can be very productive. For example, while my kids are busy with homework or playing with their toys, I tend to listen to audiobooks or podcasts. It gives me the chance to learn and grow while also keeping an eye on them.

Another strategy has been to embrace the benefits of technology. Thanks to mobile apps, I'm able to connect with other stay-at-home parents and engage in conversations about shared interests. I also enjoy using online classes to pursue my hobbies, such as learning a new dance or yoga routine.

Finally, I always try to carve out time for myself, whenever it's practically possible. It may be as simple as enjoying a cup of coffee or taking a walk on my own. I've learned that self-care is essential when you're a stay-at-home parent, and a little bit of personal space can help you be more patient, present and attentive to your children.

I hope these techniques help struggling stay-at-home parents like me to find a balance between pursuing their interests and taking care of their children.

moriah71

Greetings,

As a stay-at-home parent to a toddler, I can relate to this topic. Balancing your own personal interests with the needs of your child can feel overwhelming at times. One thing I found helpful is to set realistic expectations and embrace flexibility.

I've learned that not every day will look the same, and sometimes my child's needs will trump my own. But that's okay. It's important to be flexible and adapt to the situation as it unfolds.

Another strategy I use is to prioritize my interests, focusing on the ones that align with our current situation. For example, when my child is napping or playing by themselves, I try to engage in activities that are easy to pick up and put down. Reading a few pages of a book, or doing a quick meditation session can be done in short intervals even while keeping an eye on my little one.

Finally, I have found that finding a supportive community can go a long way. There are various online communities specifically for stay-at-home parents where we can share personal experiences and connect with people going through similar situations. These types of support systems can provide encouragement, advice, and often remind us that it's okay to take time for ourselves.

I hope these tips help to avoid feeling overwhelmed and encourage you to make time for your own interests, however small those moments turn out to be.

johnpaul.schoen

Hi there,

As a stay-at-home dad of three, I know the struggle of trying to balance personal interests with the needs of children. It can be tough trying to fit hobbies in with all of life's demands. One thing that has worked for me is to set clear boundaries for myself and my children.

I've found that it's important to communicate with your children and explain to them why you need to take time for yourself. Encourage them to engage in activities as well, either through shared interests, watching movies or gaming together.

Another tip I have is to make a plan beforehand. Instead of just saying "I want to do something for myself today," create a plan to execute on that desire. Designate certain times and routines for specific tasks or hobbies. This will help ensure that you follow through on your goals while keeping your other commitments in balance.

Finally, gratitude and appreciation have become key factors that help me maintain balance. Taking a moment to appreciate the time you spend with your children can help parent fatigue, and it makes your personal time more meaningful when you know there is someone you care about waiting for you when you're done.

I hope that helps. Being a stay-at-home parent can be both rewarding and challenging, and it requires a lot of balance and self-care. Always remember to give yourself some grace and patience.

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