FOR PARENTS AND CARERS - ARE YOUR LOVED ONES FACED WITH MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGES AND IF SO, HOW CAN YOU MIND AND CARE FOR YOURSELF?
For me, this is a special area of interest. Being a parent of three, I understand the joys and the different aspects of parenting. At times the love, the laughter and pride and other times the stress and heartache we take on. Sometimes, when we hear about the incident at school, the broken relationship or perhaps our children trying to fit in with their peers when it's a struggle.
I also recognise there are times where it can get extremely challenging for children we love, who suffer with their mental health. As parents and carers we are often left with feelings of, frustration, self-blame, anger, inadequacy, helplessness and more. Sometimes with nowhere to turn. These feelings are normal and human. But what I really want to share with you, is that kindness, compassion, patience, love and empathy, are far more useful for all concerned. Of course, this starts with ourselves first and foremost and can have far more beneficial results for all concerned. This is what Mindfulness can teach us.
Mindfulness is a great teacher for life, teaching us self-care among the chaos. When stressful emotions begin to take over, various Mindfulness practices, teach us how to step back, to breathe, rebalance and gain perspective. We become compassionate, loving and kind towards ourselves and we recognise the value of this in our relationships with our children and young adults.
Mindfulness teaches us 'not to sweat the small stuff' and how to be mindful when the bigger life events appear.
Here is an article I created for ‘Lust for Life. - the award winning, Irish well-being movement that is dedicated to transforming how we talk about, and treat Mental Health.
Learning to look after ourselves is a powerful way to lead by example.