Spending time together, de-stressing

Hi Mary Jo,

I just started a new relationship and we love each other, but we’re both overwhelmed with our work schedules. How can we find more time to spend together?

Thank you, Mo

Dear Mo,

This is a problem, but the great thing is that you both are the solution. Here’s how you can make the best of an overwhelming work schedule. The two of you should sit down and each make a list of the top three things you value most in your life right now. Then list three or four things you’re spending time on that aren’t high priority. Share your lists and commit to helping each other maintain the other’s core values. It’s important to make the sacrifices for each other so you can grow stronger together and achieve what you value most. It’s important to build a relationship on a strong foundation of values.
 
You can’t change the amount of time in a day, but you can incorporate small ways to show each other affection and love throughout the day; sending texts and leaving little love notes work great. A great relationship means sometimes both partners sacrifice time together so each person can reach their life goals.

Hey Mary Jo,

As a single working mom, how do we de-stress from everyday tasks and life instead of having a few glasses of wine when we come home?

Thanks, Crystal

Crystal,

It’s a common problem for everyone to struggle with everyday life stressors and work overload, especially as a single mom. You’re always caring for someone else, and securing time for yourself isn’t easy. However, if you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be able to care for your children. Here are some helpful suggestions for dealing with stress that will be healthy for you and your children.

  1. Slow your breathing down. Slowly count to five, pause two counts and then exhale out to five.
  2. Talk softer, especially during stressful transitions. It will calm you and everyone else down.
  3. Research is growing about the importance of exercise in lowering stress. Any and all exercise helps; you can walk, dance, ride bikes, or swim. Even better, you can include the kids.
  4. Put the kids to bed on time and enjoy a bubble bath or a funny movie. Laughing is a wonderful was to relax and does wonders for your heart.
  5. Celebrate at every opportunity. You don’t need a holiday to celebrate the day. If you have a dog or cat, celebrate their birthday or brainstorm with the kids about what you want to celebrate. This adds fun memories and helps you see the lighter side of life.
  6. Establish a support team of two or three moms. No one is an island. Being a single mom means you need a support team of good friends you can leave your children with when you need a break.
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