Busy dads often find that they struggle to enjoy everything in life. If they are thriving at work their physical health usually takes a back seat, and if they are smashing PBs in the gym and eating well at home, their work life may just take a tumble. However, it is possible to thrive both mentally and physically all while looking after your kids if you put in a little pre-planning. Here’s what you need to do to avoid neglecting your mental and physical health, and get darn close to having it all:
Carve Out Time for Exercise
Making exercise a priority is a must, no matter what. Even if you just do a 20-minute HIIT workout in the morning before work, it’s going to set you up for the day and make you feel like you can crush anything it throws at you. Don’t convince yourself that you’ll go after work, because one crappy day can lead to you skipping the gym, and before you know it you haven’t been in a month and you’re out of the habit. Exercise is a must for both physical and mental health, so learn to make it a priority in your life.
Meal prep is going to stop you from calling the nearest takeaway or running out at lunch to grab an unhealthy baguette or burger for lunch. You don’t have to be perfect all the time, and treats can be good for your mental health too. Just make sure that 80% of the time, you’re eating nourishing foods. Prep food so that you have food to take to work every day and freeze some meals for when the urge to buy a takeaway hit. The way you eat can be just as important to your physical and mental health as exercise. Remember, your kids will often see your eating habits and learn from them, too. It doesn’t matter if you tell them not to eat too much junk. If you do, they will too.
Take Your Mental Health Seriously
Some people still don’t think mental health is a thing, but just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it’s not there. Your mental health can impact every other thing going on in your life. Here’s how to handle it:
- Pay attention to your thoughts and how you’re feeling on a daily basis. Don’t ignore certain thoughts and feelings and assume they’ll go away. They could turn into a bigger problem.
- Speak to somebody you trust, or even a counselor, if you have a problem.
- Explore techniques like tapping and meditation to help you perform your best and feel better.
- Stop putting yourself in situations that jeopardize your mental health. You matter.
You’re not going to be the best dad you can be if your mental health is off. Do it for your kids.
Make Your Environment Stress-free and Child Friendly
Your environment can have a big effect on your physical and mental health. To create a stress-free environment, keep clutter and technology to a minimum. Try to use relaxing colors, too. You could even invest in things like cold air diffusers to give your home a nicer atmosphere. Just make sure that when adding things like plants and aroma oils etc, that they are safe for children/any pets.
Change the Way You Think
Rewiring the brain to think differently can be tough, but it can be done. Force yourself to look at things from different perspectives – see the negatives as positives. There are lots of books out there that can help you with this, so don’t be shy of picking up a self-help book or two. They can be great for helping you to excel in both life and your career.