Ups and Downs – Keeping Positive as a Single Parent (Part One)

My life seems to have been filled with a disproportionate amount of ups and downs, problems, worries and wonderfully brilliant highs.   I will not go into too much detail about my circumstances but after being a single parent for almost four years now, I have had very, very good days and rubbish, awful days.  Just like any parent, really.  This post will focus on single parenthood even though some points will resonate with parents in general.

So, how do you stay positive when you are feeling absolutely rubbish/have been sitting on your own worrying about everything/you are absolutely exhausted from the three or more jobs you have (in addition to looking after your children, pets and home)?  Here are a few ideas:

1.   Get into a good routine.

I find that my diary is a massive help in setting out a good routine for myself.  It helps me to focus on what I need to do and where I need to be.  I also do not forget things as much.  My short term memory is terrible so the more help I can get, the better.

2.  Feel grateful for what you have.

You can often get lulled into a false sense of life being ‘unfair.’  Sometimes life IS unfair but I try to think of the positives that I have gained from disappointments.

3.  Do not dwell on problems.

When you are a single parent, in my experience, it is very easy to sit and think things through on your own during the evenings.  Make sure you have something to stop your mind wandering off into the ‘what ifs’ and any negativity you experience.  To do this, I blog, listen to music, focus on my work, call or text friends or family, get lost in the world of Twitter for a while or watch Eastenders to snap me out of it.

4.  Take your time to process problems.

Ok, this may contradict point 3 but even though I think that rumination is not a way to stay positive, I also think that it is important to be able to process any negativity in life.  If something awful has happened, think about it, work through it, work out how you will go forward after you have had this upset.  We are all human.  Skipping on from having a problem to immediately ignoring it and carrying on as if nothing had happened, is not something I would recommend.  It will come back to plague you later.

5.  Have a good support network of family and friends.

I know that this can be difficult, dependant on the situation you are in.  For me, I talk a lot  to my family and spend as much time as I can chatting to my friends via social media.  Unfortunately, working stupid hours per week as well as having limited money and fitting meet ups around my commitments, the children’s commitments and the commitments of my friends, I find it increasingly difficult to meet up with them.  But I know they are there for me and I am there for them. Technology is wonderful in this respect.  A quick message here and there on WhatsApp or Facebook does absolute wonders to lifting your mood.

You can find Part Two of this post by clicking here.

 

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  • Twinsplustwo

    A really helpful post. I was a single mum with my first child, for his first 18 months. It can be tough but I did love the fact that we could do just what we pleased when I wasn’t at work, just the two of us.

  • Very good post have to say never been in this situation but some good information.

  • Life is tough at times but keep going – you’re doing great. You have to have the lows to appreciate the highs.

  • Erica Price

    I think these points are good ones for any parents and not just single parents.

  • I was a single parent for 2 years, before meeting my husband – it was tough, but a support network of family and good friends, did help me through. These are great tips for all parents x

  • This is a great attitude to have and I firmly believe if you focus on the positive there is less room in your brain for all the negative

  • Newcastle Family Life

    This is such a wonderful attitude to have, i was a single parent for about 8 years before meeting my partner and i always found night times the worse so i use to find things to keep me busy when my daughter was in bed xx

  • What a great post and wonderful attitude 🙂 x

  • Gretta Schifano

    It’s great that you’re so positive and practical. I too believe that it helps to think about what you have and what’s good in your live rather than the reverse and I try to teach my kids to think like that too.

  • I think these could easily be applied to two parent families too – great advice.

  • Kara

    I was a single parent for many years and you are right – routine is key, as is a good support network

  • Oana79

    Very good tips for every parent out there, Rebecca!xx

  • I relied so much on my Mum and best friend as sounding boards when I was a single mum – couldnt have managed without them. Greatt tips.

  • Really good points, I feel like I can relate these to my own situation x

  • Charly Dove

    Great advice and some good points made too – for all parents. It’s always brilliant to think about what you have and make the most of it 🙂

  • its always nice to be possitive , single or in a relationship , times get hard sometimes we all have to get through it and just be greatful we have the opportiunity to have such gorgeous children

  • Ickle Pickle

    Thank you for sharing – this is just what I need to read right now. I didn’t realise you were a single parent too. Kaz x

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