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Counselor's Corner

Self-Care and Parenting

We hear the phrase “self-care” in a lot of different professional and social circles these days. Parenting a child with learning differences requires lots of time, extra support, advocacy, and patience. As I sat listening to Student-Led Conferences, I contemplated all the hard work that not only our students do, but also their parents. I started to wonder, “What are Edison parents doing for self-care?”

Benefits of Self-Care

  1. Learn to become aware of and manage your energy
  2. Develop healthy boundaries
  3. Enhance your intuition
  4. Feel healthy and vibrant
  5. Gain greater confidence in all areas of your life
  6. Have more patience for your children and family members
  7. We can teach our children to practice self-care best by modeling the behavior!

Ways to Self-Care

  1. Compliment yourself. In this way, you can be a model for your child. By complimenting yourself in front of your child, you show him or her that you're focusing on your positive traits and behaviors. Not dwelling on mistakes or the negative.
  2. Do something nice for yourself every day. You deserve a break. Read, breathe, do yoga, go for a walk. Take some time for yourself.
  3. Look for funny or humorous things. Some people watch puppies on YouTube, enjoy stand up comedy or share something funny with friends. Ask your child to show or tell you something humorous about their day.
  4. Evaluate your day. Enjoy all the things you did right. Praise yourself. Learn from what went wrong and move on.
  5. Don’t try to be a perfect parent. Perfect parents don’t exist. Doing your best with good intention is your parental job.
  6. Talk with a caring, nonjudgmental friend or therapist. Take advantage of this when life gets so difficult that you need someone to talk to. It’s ok to look for support outside of your family.
  7. Exercise! This will keep you mentally and physically healthy. Maybe this is something that you can do with your child or whole family.
  8. Delegate tasks to other members of the family. Nobody can do it all. Ask for help when you need it!
  9. Have a space that is yours alone. It is important that you have space in your own home that is fully your own, and that you let your family know that sometimes you need privacy in that space to do whatever you want, whether it be read a book, think quietly or watch those funny puppy videos.
  10. Find balance. This is a lifetime project. It is not a finite goal at the end of which you will have a peaceful, calm and meaningful life. Balance is a way of living. It is a process. Think of yourself as practicing balancing, over and over again.

Featured Workshop:
Mindfulness for Parents
December 4, 1-5pm
The Little Church
5138 NE 23rd Ave Portland, OR
$25/$35 sliding scale

Most of us are often so busy taking care of others that we plow through our day-to-day lives without considering our own moment-to-moment experience, especially during the holiday season. In this workshop, we will explore ways of discovering balance, center, and our innate ability to love ourselves and others wholeheartedly. Through awareness practice, we will cultivate skills that can deepen our experience of presence and help us tune into connection, even in the midst of our busy lives.