With COVID-19 leading to prolonged school closure in many countries, many hassled moms are wondering how to keep their little ones occupied. The stress is heavy; mom burnout happens even when everyone’s hale and hearty.
So, how is an overwrought mom, flooded by the responsibilities of caregiving, supposed to cope? The situation’s worse if you’ve received a Stay At Home order. We have some ideas that may help.
What Is Mom Burnout?
Burnout, according to experts like Mary C Kimmel, M.D., co-director of the Perinatal Program at the University of North Carolina, is prolonged, excessive stress that depletes a person’s capacity to carry out his or her responsibilities. Mom burnout happens when an overwhelmed mom feels as though she’s stretched her ability to take care of her children too thin.
10 Signs of Mom Burnout
With her children around her all the time and being in quarantine as well, one can’t blame a mom for losing her hair. She may not even realize how frazzled she is. Here’s how to tell.
Being a mom can mean losing sleep. It’s a 24-hr a day responsibility that leaves little room for breaks. Many moms attest to not being able to fall asleep because their minds are inexhaustible. Though tired physically, they are active mentally, causing an imbalance that leads to sleeplessness. Of course, prolonged insomnia can lead to burnout, as proven by this study.
2. Social Withdrawal
Few would disagree that having kids takes away time for social interaction.COVID-19 has contained many children and moms at home, leaving even less time for friends and family.
A busy mom already tends to list her children as a top priority and spend all her time with them. Not interacting with others outside the family circle can leave a person feeling like every day is Groundhog Day – as though the days keep repeating themselves. Mundanity can lead to emotional stress.
3. Headaches and Muscle Tension
Do your muscles feel hopelessly overstretched? Are your temples throbbing constantly? If you’re experiencing pain in the head, lower or upper back areas, you may be suffering from burnout, according to this study. A weak core and poor flexibility may add stress to your already exhausted muscles. Poor spinal alignment may affect them as well.
4. Trouble keeping worries under control
Do you fret over your kids a lot? More than you should? Incessant anxiety could be telling you that your brain has reached its maximum capacity. All of us know that constant worrying is a sign of burnout.
You may find yourself becoming increasingly negative if you’ve got mom burnout. Stop and ask yourself how many times you’ve yelled unnecessarily at your young ones this week. It’s time to take the measures we recommend below if you’ve gone over the top.
5. Skin Troubles
Weak immunity is a sign that any more will push you beyond your limits. When weird rashes start appearing on your arms and legs, you know that you may have reached the end of your rope.
The American Psychological Association agrees that a weak immune system is a red flag for stress. The students it studied showed burnout during peak periods, such as exams.
6. Constant Questioning
Have you started to ask yourself if staying at home with your children is worth the stress? You may also have a secret ambition that you may be hiding from your family.
If you’ve started to feel as though your family has taken you for granted, you may be facing undue pressure. It may be time to take stock and read the tips below.
7. Constant Catching Up
If you have not flipped a calendar for a while, consulted Google Calendar or worse, forgotten that it is a word in the dictionary, stress may be piling up on your plate. You may need to start taking a step back to prevent yourself from being a burnt-out mom.
8. Menstrual Cycle Fluctuations
Burnout is a possibility if there are long stretches between your periods. Stress affects one’s menstrual cycle and not positively, as this study confirms.
9. Your House Is a Mess
You feel afraid of showing your home to your friends because it’s too messy. A perpetual mess is a sign of burnout in a mom. If you’ve either no time to get yourself organized or just don’t want to, declutter your life, and yourself.
10. Lack of Excitement
You find that nothing stimulates or excites you, even doing what you typically enjoy. The “stuck in a rut” syndrome says that its time for a twist.
Tips to Avoid Burnout as a Mother
So how does mom avoid being frazzled? She reads Life Advancer’s tips, of course. We have some advice for Moms with Burnout.
- Exercise: Start a workout routine. It creates endorphins, the hormone that motivates you, and this isn’t trendy information. Get friends involved too (use it as an excuse to take regular breaks from your kids).
- Follow a Schedule: Routines can seem bothersome and may bring Alcatraz to mind. But savvy moms follow one. Why? It eliminates unnecessary chaos and stress. When you get your family on board, family life will fall into place a lot faster. Don’t forget to factor rest into your routine. The best part? A happy mommy.
- Self-check: There comes a time when mom needs to take stock of herself and her life. Reset your mind daily. What challenges did you face? How can you avoid this mommy pitfall? It helps always to perform mental checks.
- Have a self-care plan: Everyone needs sleep, especially a diligent, exhausted mom. Go for regular massages or spa treatments if they help to re-energize you. All moms need time for themselves.
Mom burnout is not inevitable. We hope that we’ve shown you a way to manage it if COVID-19 has put you in quarantine.