How can parents deal with negative emotions and anxiety?

Emotional burnout is a relatively new term by the standards of psychology, which appeared in the last century. The concept means behavioral and psycho-emotional changes that occur in a person due to overstrain: nervous, emotional or moral exhaustion. People in those professions who often have to show emotions and have a lot of contact with others are susceptible to the most emotional burnout. However, parents are another group particularly susceptible to burnout syndrome . 

Today, it is not uncommon for many families to receive such a diagnosis in personal sessions with psychologists and psychotherapists. The peculiarities of the human psyche are such that if you do not pay attention to problems for a long time, they become the cause of destructive conditions. Therefore, people who have been diagnosed with such a diagnosis want to know how to overcome it, and those who do not want to undergo it want to understand how to prevent such a condition as burnout.

Factors in the emotional crisis of parents

Personality upbringing is a huge work, therefore mothers and fathers, especially young ones, are completely unprepared for the birth of a child. Even reading the relevant literature during pregnancy does not save you from disappointment, discomfort and first difficulties.

It is often very difficult for young parents to adapt to a new role for them. It is not accepted to complain about children: they are the flowers of life. For this reason, discontent and unspoken negativity often turns into self-criticism and burnout.  

The main reasons for the appearance of negative emotions, disappointment from the parental role, apathy, depression and other phenomena are:

  • open housing issues;
  • financial difficulties;
  • insomnia;
  • nervous strain;
  • physical weakness;
  • lack of outside help;
  • reduction of personal space and free time.

When most of these points are combined, burnout occurs.

Due to the peculiarities of the psyche, there are several categories of people most susceptible to this syndrome. Psychologists classify them as a risk group, so they are advised first of all to take into account the recommendations of specialists even before the first symptoms appear:

  • large families;
  • families of children with reduced immunity;
  • incomplete families;
  • families living in difficult living conditions;
  • fathers and mothers suffering from perfectionism or excellent student syndrome;
  • mothers who play the role of housewife and breadwinner of the family.

Features of the psyche with emotional burnout

How does the human psyche behave during the onset of burnout syndrome? The manifestation of violations begins with trifles, which, meanwhile, are quite simple to notice:

  • irritable screams at children;
  • indifference to actions, thoughts, emotions of the child;
  • manifestations of aggression, most often for no reason;
  • negative emotions, self-deprecating thoughts and ideas; 
  • depressive conditions;
  • increased anxiety, turning into apathy;
  • fights regularly with relatives or family friends;
  • tearful mood;
  • chronic fatigue;
  • constant sleepiness;
  • low self-esteem.

Psychologists distinguish three main stages in the development of burnout: the stage of withstanding, increased anxiety, and deep personal deformation. If at the first stage of the development of the syndrome a person still feels the strength to cope with the surging fatigue and problems, then the second stage involves only a consistent accumulation of aggression, irritability, and negativity.

The peculiarities of the human psyche are such that at a certain stage it is no longer possible to endure the load of accumulated emotions. In this case, with burnout, the third stage begins: blaming the child for all troubles, condemnation of indifferent others, lack of self-control, insulting oneself and children. The last stage is the most difficult, and getting out of it is very problematic. It is for this reason that it is so important to learn how to identify the burnout syndrome in the early stages.

How to get rid of negative emotions and burnout

Despite the many difficulties, it is possible to overcome negative emotions, anxiety and cope with personal burnout. Effective psychological methods and techniques will help in this.

  • Get more rest.

The main cause of psycho-emotional burnout is chronic fatigue. Parents need to set aside time for good rest on a regular basis. Take a little vacation or just set aside a couple of hours every day to walk to a nearby park, cafe or mall to cool off your head. If the child is too young to leave him alone, do not skimp on a nanny.

  • Ask for help.

Many people are ashamed to ask for help. However, a simple request will help you take off some of your daily workload. Ask family members to sit with your child, do small errands, or help with cleaning or cooking. This advice is especially relevant in single parent families.

  • Accept your own and others’ flaws.

Perfect people don’t exist, so don’t beat yourself up for flaws and emotions. Not everyone is required to be perfect dads or build exemplary careers – everyone is good at something. Be condescending to yourself the moment you go in to blame yourself for poor parenting.

  • Get enough sleep.

Healthy sleep is one of the main conditions for the full functioning of the body. It is impossible to feel good with regular sleep patterns and extreme tiredness. Of course, it is difficult to get enough sleep with small children. But try to draw up a general sleep pattern, focusing on the younger family member. Also, do not neglect the daytime: get some rest with your child for additional rejuvenation.

  • Find the source of your energy resources.

Often, parents complain that after the appearance of the baby, they have to forget about their hobbies. But for many of us, our favorite business or personal interests is the best way to improve motivation, cheer ourselves up and simply replenish our positive emotions. Do not deny yourself the pleasure of doing something interesting or enjoyable: go to the spa , get a creative haircut, buy an interesting book, visit a theater or museum, eat your favorite cake in a pastry shop nearby. 

  • Let go of your guilt.

The feeling of guilt is most often a destructive feeling that leads to a stormy stream of negative emotions and causes auto-aggression. Do not blame yourself for paying little attention to the child, or for buying a dress for the child with a new book. Strike a balance: don’t let yourself get bogged down in shame, but don’t focus on personal issues either.

  • Walk more outdoors.

Long walks in the fresh air are the first path to a healthy body and mind. Improved oxygen metabolism stimulates the work of brain neurons, and the absence of external stimuli calms and pacifies.

It is worth remembering that with emotional burnout, you cannot independently prescribe yourself treatment in the form of sedatives or turn to substances that alter consciousness (antipsychotics, alcohol). When the first signs of the syndrome appear, it is recommended to visit a specialist (psychologist or psychoanalyst) who will select the correct treatment regimen and give appropriate recommendations.

event_note February 17, 2021

account_box Winona Tse MD

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *