Parenting is hard.
There’s no rule book on how to do it and any day is full of countless obstacles and concerns to navigate. We often spend all of our energy and time looking after our kids, and not ourselves. Our focus on our offspring might mean we don’t eat properly, sleep enough, or nurture our relationships.
The last of these is so vital because our children base how they form connections based on what we parents model.
Not to add yet another responsibility to your full plate as a “good” parent, but it’s important that for us to be the best for others, we must be the best for ourselves. That means taking time to care for the important aspects of physical and mental care. Just as important as eating a healthy diet and getting physical exercise is making and furthering fruitful connections with others.
Esther Perel, TED Talk Superstar and noted therapist, has a really amazing quote about this that resonates with me.
The quality of your life ultimately depends on the quality of your relationshipsEsther Perel
Creating a time and space away from the role as “parent” is essential for doing this. Which is one of the driving forces when I began this Hänga journey.
Parents often hangout with other parents with all their kids present. There’s baby talk and you’re listening/watching out to make sure your kids aren’t getting in to trouble. You never really leave the role as parent.
Or, worse, you suddenly find an opening to get a baby-sitter or your child/children are at a friend’s house and you have time to yourself and none of your friends are available. Instead of socializing and tending to your psycho-social needs, you’re watching Netflix and eating ice cream.
Hänga is a constant hub of opportunities to rediscover yourself.
Whether it’s connecting with fellow parents who are also looking to talk with another adult of shared interests or connecting with potential future colleagues. TMOHä has innumerable possibilities to strengthen your network and make meaningful connections, improving your mental health.
Being a parent is the most important job many of us will ever have. But, like any other responsibility, to do it to the best of our abilities requires some downtime to relax and recharge. We want to raise fully developed and well-rounded people. So it’s important that we represent that behavior in our own lives.