Are you a highly sensitive parent looking for self-care tips? In this short read, we share how you as an HSP parent can take properly care of yourself.
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Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
As a highly sensitive person, you will probably be very in tune with your child’s needs.
You will know when they need attention or when they have a worry, and you will know that not all is right with them by the expressions on their face and the body language they convey.
In some cases, you might know what your child needs before they even ask for it.
It’s great to be so intuitive but if you’re relating to this, you probably agree that it’s overwhelming too.
The Challenges Of Highly Sensitive Parents
Being a highly sensitive parent can cause certain challenges with regard to self-care.
For one thing, you will be doing everything you can to meet your child’s needs, from fighting their corner when you think others are hurting them to looking for the best pediatrician when you suspect they are experiencing health issues. Needless to say, this can all be quite exhausting.
You might also be putting a lot of pressure on yourself to make the right decisions. For many highly sensitive parents, feelings of guilt can be common if they suspect they haven’t made the best choices for their children.
As a highly sensitive person, you may be inwardly affected by your child’s emotions too, feeling whatever it is they are going through.
For all of these reasons, your emotional state will be affected. This is especially true when you’re balancing work and family life and trying to do what is right for everyone.
It’s because of this that self-care is so important. You need to take time out to focus on your personal needs as you will better cope with the challenges you face as both a parent and a highly sensitive person.
So, here are some of the things you may need to do in way of self-care for yourself.
#1 Remind Yourself That It’s Okay To Focus On You
As a highly sensitive parent, you may start to feel guilty every time you think about your own needs. But don’t! Yes, your child needs you, but they need a parent who is well and fighting fit, and not a parent who is tired and worn out all of the time.
It’s not selfish to care for yourself, so don’t be afraid to focus on self-care. You will benefit from time alone and your child will benefit too, especially if they’re also highly sensitive and able to pick up on how you are feeling.
#2: Schedule Downtime
As a parent, you will likely be very busy looking after the needs of your children while managing your home. Your busyness will escalate if you have a job to manage too. If you don’t schedule downtime, you could burn yourself out, and that will have disastrous effects on your health and the running of your household.
So, look for windows where downtime can happen. It might be when your children are at school or when they’re in bed. It might be the hour before they get up in the morning or when you’re on a break at work. Whatever the case, make downtime a regular thing each day or each week. Use this time to focus on you and not on your chores, your thoughts about your children, or your thoughts about your job. Go for a walk, meditate, do something that is fun, or do anything else in your downtime that will feed your body, mind, and soul.
#3: Ask For Help
Outsourcing is common in business and it should be common in our everyday lives too! This is especially true when our to-do lists threaten to overwhelm us.
By asking for help, highly sensitive parents have more time for self-care. This can be your way to schedule in your regular downtime but it can also be your way to take time out whenever life threatens to overwhelm you.
So, talk to your partner, your parents, your in-laws, and your friends. Ask them to look after your children so you can have a break for a while. And delegate some of your other tasks if they are willing to take them on, as you will be less likely to become overwhelmed if you have less to burden your day.
#4: Schedule Family Time
Self-care is about finding time for yourself but to stave off any feelings of guilt, it is still important to schedule family time in too. This way, you will get to spend time with your kids, hopefully by doing something fun, and your mind will be at ease when you later have time alone.
So, find that point in the day when you can all come together, whether that’s mealtime, game room time, or simply time sat on the sofa chatting to each other and enjoying one another’s company.
If you’re a highly sensitive person, we hope these suggestions were helpful to you. But for more advice, check out our resources and the other support options available on our website.