5 Ways to Relieve Stress: Are Your Kids Making You Go Crazy?

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eggs with stress face getting ready to be cracked

 Do your children ever make your head feel like it’s going to just crack in half if you have to repeat yourself one more time? I am constantly saying things like “Stop touching your brother”, “Can you please calm down”, “Stop doing that”, “Can you please be quiet”…the list could go on and on.

Sometimes I feel like my oldest son (he’s almost 6) hears another language when I am speaking to him. I might as well be with how well he listens to me. I often can repeat myself ten times and he still won’t listen. He seems to go in spurts with his listening abilities when it comes to my husband and I.

He can occasionally listen perfectly but more often than not we have to repeat ourselves. Although it’s funny that at school he has one of those glowing halos above his head. Maybe it’s an authority figure thing? I much rather it be this way than having him be rotten at school, but I really hope his at home listening skills kick in here soon.

baby angel vs devil
Image by Beth Day on Flickr

Here are a few things I like to do so I don’t go completely mommy dearest on him:

  1. Close my eyes and go to a happy place for a few minutes. Thinking about something else for a little bit helps separate my boggled mind from the situation. Then I can react more calmly than I would in the heat of the moment.
  2. Take deep, deep breaths. Deep breathing is a natural stress reliever. That’s why you always hear it as a tactic to use in stressful situations (i.e. when you’re scared or in labor). Try it! It really works!
  3. Try not to let everything little bother me. If I reacted to every little thing that my children do that I don’t like… I would be a bald woman, in the corner of my house, in a fetal position, constantly repeating “No, don’t do that”. Now, we don’t want that do. Do we?
  4. If I get too stressed out explaining my reasoning for being upset gives me a chance to reflect on the situation. I have to calmly explain why I am upset, what they did wrong, and how we can prevent that from happening again. This also tends to help my son understand why he should listen. Sometimes I get glimpses of that cartoon light bulb turning on above his head.
  5. Take a mommy time out. If I am at my wits end going to another room for a little bit helps clear my mind. I can then go out and tackle the stresses that await me.

Hopefully writing these things out will help me remember to not overact in times of stress. I am a very high strung person so that can be quite a task for me. I have to remember he is just a kid. My kid. My kid that I love with all my heart. No matter what.

How do you deal with stress? Please share! We all could use more ways to take a mommy mental vacation.


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Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.


  1. This made me laugh since I couldn’t tell if you were talking about a son who is 6 or 16! My son is 16 his listening habits haven’t changed a bit since he was 3… Worse, now has more confidence and a much better vocabulary and negotiating skills when I finally do get his attention. I’ve used all of your tips over the years and have days when I’m a good, patient mom, and others when my son could rightfully look at me and give me the big “FAIL”.

    • lol That’s not very encouraging. My son will be six here before long. I can see my son being like that at 16 too but I really hope not. He already has a teenager attitude. It’s hard to be patient all the time especially when they make it so hard. Gotta love them though 🙂

  2. This is a great article. I am in the moment where I feel exactly like I could pull my hair out right now. So, glad that I ran across these tips.

  3. cooking lady says:

    These are some very good tips that will help anyone. Great post!

  4. When my kids were little and I was a stay at home mom (and sometimes even when I worked but was home with them) as soon as my husband got home I hit the master bathroom. I shut the bedroom door, locked the bathroom door and would just veg out – or read, or take a bath or just sit on the floor and rock myself! I always thought I was the only one who did that- I now know that a lot of mom’s need a break too!

    • Oh yes! You aren’t the only one. We all could use a break! I feel bad for doing that sometimes because my husband does work all day too. But he needs time with the kids as well 🙂

  5. Elisa Good says:

    Good tips, thank you. Some of things you say are definitely worth a try. I would like to share an idea that is very unconventional – tree hugging. Many people believe that trees and plants overall can give us positive energy and relieve stress – why not, no one has proven otherwise. In any case – going to the woods and spending time in the nature is a good thing to do for stress relief.
    Best Regards
    Elsa Good

  6. Oh my gosh the repetitiveness…I have a 2 and a 5 year old. My 2 year old feels the need to repeat everything over and over and over without even taking a breath between. My 5 year old is like your 6 year old…perfect in school…does whatever she wants at home (so it seems in my exaggerated mind)…Her newest thing is scissors. she cuts paper up all day long. I have no problem with this. But the paper I find all over the place. It’s like someone is walking around my house pooping confetti in random places.

    Im not sure what I do to keep myself from blowing up. I feel so on the edge most of the time. Going outside with them really helps me since we have had nice weather. The fresh air!

    • What a kawinkydink! I have a 2 and 5 year old (6 in a few months) too! Haha the confetti thing is priceless. My son just likes to randomly tear up napkins. I ask him why and he says he doesn’t know. Ugh. Oh, I feel ya. I’m on the edge most of the time too. Sometimes I forget why we encouraged speaking lol. Gotta love them! The nice weather has been helping us too. Except for the ants that are now coming inside because my son has made them mad outside.

    • I give my kids the junk mail and a pair of scissors and let them shred it to their hearts’ content. I give them a basket or bowl to sit with to catch all the paper. Keeps them busy and allows them a non-crazy way of doing what they want!

    • That’s a good idea! I will have to try that sometime. Although I do use junk mail to line the bunny cage.

  7. Aspgriswold says:

    Great tips. Happy SITS day!!

  8. Paula @ Simply Sandwich says:

    Thank you for the practical de-stressing info! Very helpful for busy mamas! :). Stopping by from SITS!

  9. I have three kiddos-9, 5, and 2. The two youngest are both boys and they are each a handful. When one of them starts to wig out, I (fake) calmly take them to their room and hold them tight and rock them in the rocking chair. The other two know to stay away when this happens. Then I just hold him and rock him until we have both calmed down. Sometimes the tantrums and behavior are cries for attention, so I feel like this really helps. My 5 year old wears his halo everywhere but home, too!

  10. Love this list! I try so many of the same techniques when I feel I’ve been saying the same 5 words to my daughter all day long and she just isn’t getting it. Great reminders of all of the reasons to stay calm 🙂
    Happy SITS day!

  11. Sheila Skillingstead says:

    Sometimes you don’t have time to think. One day all of the girls were in the middle of a teenage shouting match. Dad tried to stop them and I said that he should take a walk. When he got back we were all calm and happy to see me. 3 teenage girls at the same time and we made it. Enjoy your SITS Day.

  12. Happy SITS day!
    If I can walk away, I do! Most times if dad is around, I look on him with a sigh and he usually takes over. My concern is that we sound like a broken record that they have just decided to ignore – like when you work in a store and they repeat the same music that you learn to tune out. Something to that effect? So how do we get them to not tune out? I haven’t found the right answer but what I do is I refer to something they love first and then continue on with the lecture.
    That’s all I can do!

    Khloé Gadson

  13. {Melinda} Such a great post. Yes, our kids always tend to perform better for others than for us. I think they just know that we will always love them even when they’re being rotten. 🙂 Great tips … I think #3 is the hardest for me. But I’ve come a long way in letting go of the little things. It greatly improved my relationship with my kids, my teenager daughter especially.

    Happy SITS Day!!

  14. Mommy's Always Write says:

    Since having my two boys (who are now 2 and 4), I have really learned to pick my battles. Some things are just not worth fighting over or stressing about. That has helped me considerably! I also have been known to put myself on “time-out” if I can tell I’m about to lose it. I’ll tell my boys I need a minute to calm down, and then I’ll go somewhere quiet for a few minutes until I can talk to them at a noise level that doesn’t break the sound barrier and without steam coming out of my ears. It surprisingly works to calm everyone down. And besides, who said time-outs are just for kids? 😉 Congrats on being featured on SITS!

  15. I need to take more mommy time-outs!

    Happy SITS day!

  16. Happy SITS day!

  17. This is great! Congrats on being a SITS featured blogger! That’s how I found you and I’m so glad that I did! I love your style and I also have two very energetic little boys! Things can reach the point of insanity, can’t they? I’m going to try some of you tips! I love “taking a mommy time-out”. I do that frequently and it totally helps! I blog about the hilarity and insanity of a life with boys too if you’d like to stop by: http://www.missbananapants.com. Glad to meet you! I’m a new fan!

  18. I was just saying the other day that I might as well be speaking a foreign language since my kids don’t listen to English, but then again they’re at such a young age they would learn the other language and they could not listen to me in two languages!

  19. Sandy Bucholtz says:

    My kids are older now (11 and 13) I think I drive them more nuts than they drive me 😀 lol Great post!

  20. Mommy time-outs! I have definitely used this before! 🙂

    Happy SITS Day!

  21. As a mom of 6 between 13-20 I can use some of your suggestions. I already breathe deeply…often but I need to remember to apply the rest more often. Thanks for the good reminders.

    • You got your hands full. I often say I have 6 just because the two I have feel like that sometimes. I’m sure you have some great tips we all could use!

  22. Mommy timeout is something I really need to do more. I fail to do it because I’m so caught up in what I’m feeling at the moment. But I know I should… I need it… and my children need it. Happy SITS!

  23. Martha @ Running in Mommyland says:

    It’s universal, isn’t it? I think we all feel this way about our kids. I have (many times) given myself a time out; locking the bathroom door for a few minutes of peace.

    Glad I found your blog! 🙂

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