Tips and Tools for Being a Good Parent to Yourself

Meal Time

Meal time with family was either the only time everyone came together or a special bonding opportunity that was frequently missed. Making meal time an occasion rather than a chore helps you create a special time of day to celebrate a critical part of your existence: eating. Start by making healthy food choices in eating clean and organic foods when possible. Preparing your own meals helps you to connect to the food you are eating, which is a mindful practice of gratitude. Invite others to participate as a way to grow community around eating.

Show Affectionate Love Towards Self and Others

Science has proven that a higher number of hugs or instances of loving touch throughout the day increases your happiness. Hugging and physical touch stimulates the production of a hormone called oxytocin. Oxytocin is a calming hormone that creates feelings of love, peace, and safety. Be mindful of others’ physical boundaries by asking if they would accept loving touch. Wrapping your arms around yourself, giving yourself a pat on the shoulder, or gently massaging your arms and legs will help you show the love. Practicing loving physical touch toward yourself encourages body positivity and enhances a positive body image.

Learn How to Set Healthy Boundaries

Part of the chaos which stems from a toxic home life and upbringing is a lack of healthy boundaries. You take care of your inner child by setting the example. Boundaries help us determine what is okay and what is not okay in terms of how we are treated and how we treat others. Practice right speech, right action, and right thoughts mindfully while clearly communicating where you stand.

Take Care of Your Mental Health

Growing up in a toxic parental environment leaves long lasting effects. Seeking counseling or therapy for some time is a helpful and caring way to work through your experiences. Parents who are hurtful toward their children likely didn’t take the time they needed to work on themselves and their own experiences.

Create “You” Time

Turn off the phone, the TV, and the computer. Do what you like to do or what your inner child likes to do. Make time for self-care and more importantly, time for fun.

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