What is Parenting "Lite" and How to Practice It?
Some days are harder than others, so here’s what parenting lite is and how parenting lite can help in your life.
There’s so much going on in the world, and it’s normal for many people to feel exhausted from the world around us. Even on a normal day, you may find yourself feeling beaten down or overwhelmed, and that’s OK. As a parent, you may have days were you just don’t WANT to parent because it’s hard, and no one understands that better than your fellow parents. As the topic of parenting “lite” is circulating the web, let’s take a break to examine what parenting lite is and how it can help you be a great parent, even on those difficult days.
What Does “Lite” Parenting Mean?
This was a new term for me. After a little research and discussing it with my fiancé, he said “so it’s lazy parenting?” While I see where he got that idea, I see parenting lite as a more laid-back parenting style to take on (maybe only when it’s needed rather than all day, every day). Some days, you might just want to wrap your kids up in swaddle blankets and put them to bed as early as possible just so that you can have a break. Whether you’re sick or just overwhelmed, these strategies can help you manage. By parenting lite, you can step back from your duties without neglecting your job as a parent. After all, no one is advocating for bad parenting! Instead, think of parenting lite as finding the balance between giving your children the healthy amount of attention and nurturing they need while also allowing them independence so that you have time for yourself. This benefits not only you but your kids. While this is more difficult with an infant than older children, it’s still possible.
Featuring newborn swaddle from Bianca Collection
Examples of Parenting Shortcuts (That Don’t Suck)
Let your baby wander – If you have a little one learning to crawl or walk, let them explore! Make sure your space is baby proofed and dangerous items are out of reach. Block of spaces you don’t want them getting into, and simply allow them to wander while you take a breather. Leave out their favorite baby swaddle and soft toys – they’ll love it. It’s good for them to discover their surroundings, and you can relax for a little bit.
Take advantage of playgroups – Get together with your fellow moms and parents! If you need a day to yourself, make an agreement with another parent you trust to watch your kid(s). They can watch the kids for one day, and you can watch their kids another day.
Allow screen time – No one is perfect all the time! Sometimes, it’s OK to let your kids use screens as a form of entertainment. Yes, if you’re going to allow screens, you should try to encourage educational games or television shows. However, do what you need to for one day. You can pick up your typical screen routine tomorrow.
Forget the chores – Let the dishes pile. Skip the laundry for a day. Run those errands tomorrow. You might be used to a to-do list every day, and skipping it one day won’t hurt you.
Choose self-directed activities – If you have kids that are a little older, consider independent play activities like drawing or other art supplies. Give them a pile of paper and tape, and see what they can do! Go into the back of the closet and pull out those toys your kids forgot they had. Encouraging independent play will give you some time to recover.
Order in – Don’t feel like cooking? Order pizza or whatever sounds good. This quick and easy tip will save you a lot of time and energy (oh, and dishes)!
Pay for Conveniences – Much like ordering in food, consider other conveniences you might not normally utilize, like sending out your laundry or having groceries delivered. When you don’t feel like doing your everyday activities, these services can give you a break.
The moral of the story is it’s OK not to do it all. Parents may not get sick days or mental health days, but parenting lite is one way to recover. See how it could apply to your life!
What do you think of the idea of parenting lite?
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