How To Manage Stress As A Single Mother

by Mother Huddle Staff
How To Manage Stress As A Single Mother

Being a single mother is hard, as it changes the course of your life.

And, unsurprisingly, it’s stressful.

There’s multiple moving parts at one time, some of which include being a solid co-parent to your children, learning how to work with your former spouse, and balancing your work at the same time.

But what are the best ways to deal with your stress properly as a single mother going through a difficult time? Let’s find out.

Understand The Sources of Your Stress

The first and most important step to manage your stress as a single mother is to understand the sources and to pinpoint the root causes of it.

Some of the most common sources of stress in a single mom’s life can be:

  1. Financial Pressures
  2. Balancing Work and Parenting
  3. Having A Small Support Network
  4. Not Having An Emotionally Balanced Life

More often than not, these common situations are a significant contributor to a parents’ stress levels, putting them in difficult places. Most parents might also think of the question of “How Do I Balance My Life With All of These Contributing Factors?”

Well, there’s no way around it, but there’s ways that you can cope.

Develop A Support System

The first way you can handle your stress as a single mother is to develop a solid support system.

Make sure to prioritize time with your family and seek help from friends. Give your best friends a call every once in a while, or even catch up over drinks with your friends if your former spouse is watching the kids for the week.

Another option is to find a community group that could align with your interests. You could find anything from a cooking class to even an activity, such as pickleball.

Hobbies aside, know that you aren’t alone. There are many single mothers who need help and just as much community that you do, as there are multiple similar groups where you can find the support and community that you need.

Be Smart With Your Time Management

Time management is hard.

However, it can be learned with time and patience.

With an exorbitant amount of distractions that can plague a single mother’s time, such as social media and entertainment apps, it’s now more important than ever to prioritize time management.

One of the best steps is to start by planning out each week and what you’re going to do.

Start off every Sunday by planning work and a weeknight activity, and the times you’ll be with your children during the week. You could also focus on communicating with your former spouse and using a parenting app at the same time.

By planning out your week and focusing on time management, it’s also important to set boundaries and allocate time for yourself.

Someone I knew found themselves getting stretched too thin multiple times over the course of a month, and they learned that they needed to give time to themselves to avoid burnout. So, make sure to set time aside for your own wants and needs too, rather than only of your children and former spouse.

Focus On Financial Planning and Budgeting

Just as time management is hard, budgeting is too.

It seems impossible to save for anything with so many expenses to keep in mind, such as childcare, the mortgage, and even the simple things such as groceries.

But, it’s important to keep in mind that budgeting and making short-term sacrifices can be of tremendous benefit in the long run.

A common budgeting analogy is how budgeting is like baking cookies. Just like making cookies, you have to make the perfect batch every time if you want perfect cookies.

And, well, budgeting is the same way.

You need to closely (not perfectly) follow your budget plan in place to ensure a perfect result in the future.

And that can mean anything from cutting down costs on fast food, limiting Amazon purchases to a minimum, or even canceling subscriptions for your streaming services.

Trust me, that is much easier said than done.

Develop Healthy Coping Strategies And Seek Help If Needed

As a mother, there will be times that are hard.

You will be tired. You will be exhausted. And, you will get angry.

During these times, recognize that it’s normal to feel these emotions on a regular basis. However, the way that you deal with these emotions will help you become a better person.

Make sure to develop healthy coping mechanisms, such as calming yourself down, taking a walk, or even seeking counseling. If you notice any abnormal patterns or if you have a group of people that can criticize your behaviors as necessary, take the necessary steps immediately.

Seek counseling immediately, as this is the first step to embrace your healing on the journey of single motherhood.

There might also be times where your ex-partner is attempting to take full custody of the kids without your consent. In that situation, you may be even more unsure on what to do.

Fortunately, the best person to call is an empathetic Sacramento family lawyer from Boyd Law. A lawyer who focuses on child custody matters and divorce can help you fight for your rights to get the custody of your children that you deserve.

Balance Your Work and Parenting

As a single parent, you need to work to provide.

And the work you complete needs to be flexible for your kids. Make sure that when you’re looking for a new job to communicate your expectations about working remotely or even taking on a hybrid job if possible.

Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been more employers that have been flexible on remote work than ever before. The world of office jobs has been continually changing, and just as the times change, you can adapt with these changes properly.

For single mothers, having a position that is flexible with your schedule and that provides a proper work-life balance is non-negotiable.

Just as the world changes with how we work, you also need to keep your work and family life separate. Don’t let the challenges of work get into your family life.

If you end up seeing your children after a hard day of work, see this as a therapeutic escape, rather than another detriment.

Remember that children are a part of the joys in life, so make sure to give every ounce of love, care, and respect for your kids during their developmental phases of grade school.

Manage Your Stress Effectively Today

In summary, you can help manage your stress as a single mother by:

  1. Understanding The Sources of Your Stress
  2. Developing A Support System
  3. Being Smart With Your Time Management
  4. Focusing on Financial Planning
  5. Developing Healthy Coping Strategies
  6. Having a solid work-life balance

When you choose to follow these steps, that can make the journey as a single mother easier, even though it’s still difficult in many ways. You should also keep in mind that managing your stress is a marathon, not a sprint.

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