How yoga can help you be a great parent

Do you find yourself in situations where you’re shouting at your kids and don’t event know why anymore? Well, you probably know why you’re shouting but maybe you think afterwards that it really wasn’t necessary…?

I completely get it. I’m not naturally a “shouty” person but since I’ve had my kids who are now 2 and 4 years old I seem to be constantly barking out orders and finding myself often very close to throwing a tantrum myself!

Can yoga really help me to become a better parent?

You can probably relate to this scene which seems to be a daily battle in our house and it’s just a small example of many many different scenarios….

So we’re getting ready to go to school and I’ve already told my 4 year old three times to put her shoes on:

Me: “Get your shoes on please we have to go”…

4 year old: “Mama, I need a pen and draw a flower for my friend”…

Me: “No we’re not drawing now, put your shoes on!”

4 year old: “Mama! I’m playing!”

Me (getting a bit hot and sweaty now): “Put your shoes on, we’ll be late for school!”

4 year old: “… in a minute!”

Me: “Put your shoes on NOW!!!!!”

4 year old: “I need a wee…”

Me: ?!?!?!?!?!?!!!!!!!

Depending on my patience level that day this can continue for a while and usually ends with some kind of bribery… so of course we get to school somehow but inside I feel all sorts of things… frustration, guilt for shouting, guilt for handing out treats before school, why didn’t I make her go to the toilet before etc etc

It’s fine if it’s a one off but when you’ve got this every single day, your toddler has done a poo in the midst of all of this or has drawn on the sofa in the meantime, you know you have a million things to do and you won’t be able to do any of them because you’ll be wiping up spilled drinks or just generally be a slave to your children…. you quickly reach for a chocolate bar as that is the only thing that will keep you going at this moment…

So how can yoga help you with all of this? Can it maybe transform your kids into peaceful little angels?

Sorry, probably not but it can help YOU! Think of it like a toolbox. It can make you stronger physically and mentally and give you tools that you can reach for during the day to stay sane… I don’t necessarily mean calm, I mean stay centred, stay you… rather than turning into an angry fire spitting dragon.

What is in the yoga tool box?

  • Breathing exercises 

Just very simple breathing exercises, ujjayi breath or even counting in for four counts counting out for six counts will help you to calm down. Taking a deep breath is so important and it’s something I’ve been teaching my four year old daughter since she knew how to breathe without spitting or blowing raspberries!

I was so proud when she came home the other day and told me that her friend was crying and she told her to breathe in and breathe out to calm down! It’s something that works every single time and if it doesn’t work for her straight away then at least I will get calmer just by breathing together.

  • Knowing how to get a strong and healthy body

Yoga is good for your posture, your muscles and joints and your overall well-being. Yoga will strengthen your body, you will feel more energised and you will be able to keep up with your kids!

The stronger you feel, the better you feel in your own body the stronger you can be for your family!

Yoga teaches you body awareness, it will make you stronger and more flexible not only physically but also mentally.

  • Relaxation techniques

Yes you can learn how to relax and it’s not easy! Relaxing in a productive way rather than resorting to alcohol and passing out in front of the TV can make a big difference. Even just a few minutes of Savasana can have really powerful benefits.

  • Bonding time with your children

I’m a big fan of including my children in my yoga practice. Not only because if I didn’t then I wouldn’t be able to practise at all but mainly because I love spending time with them! And I love sharing what I love with my kids. Kids will love every opportunity that they can get to climb on top of you and they will start to copy you.

Your kids see you as a role model and you want them to grow up to healthy adults who look after themselves, who have strong bodies and good posture. You want them to feel great about themselves and know how to stay strong and healthy…

Yogaberry

Hi, I’m Christine, a mum of two and I love everything to do with yoga! My blog is about how to bring yoga into our busy family lives and how to stay fit, healthy and sane. I also teach group and private yoga classes for adults and families in New Malden and Kingston.

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