Here are 6 great life tips from professional specialist family counsellor Julie Wales to help parents overcome the many challenges that always arise when bringing up children... 
1. Establish a good support system. 
Allow family, your partner and friends to help you. You don't have to do it all yourself! 
Get a babysitter or some respite. 
Connect with others who can help and support. 
2. Be organised and follow routines. 
Ask your children to help get their own school things organised the night before school. 
Establish a healthy sleep pattern. 
Use your time management to good effect to reduce your stress. 
3. Be consistent with your boundaries and expectations. 
Follow through and be consistent with your rules and consequences if broken, and offer regular praise. 
Use warnings and reminders. 
Talk at family mealtime about what jobs each person can do, including the adults. 
Agree or compromise were possible. 
Use a calm voice – I know it’s difficult! 
Encourage them to do their homework before eating the evening meal, and only offer help if they need it. 
4. Parental Self-Care. 
Deep breathing and relaxation and regular 'you time'. 
Model being calm and relaxed. 
Look at your own 'life grid' (reference: Susan Jeffers - Freeing ourselves from the mad myths of parenthood) and identify what is enjoyable in your life apart from your family... hobbies, leisure time, socialising with friends, exercising, etc. 
Keep practicing your self-care and focus on the things going right in your life. 
5. Allow for easy communication and independence. 
Set up a journal of your child’s positives, e.g.- 'Wow' moments that are impressive. 
Always let them know you will listen and don’t interrupt them when they speak. 
Agree to disagree when tempers are frayed and come back to it when all is calmer.  
Use your filter of what to ‘fight’ about and what you can let go of. 
Your goal is to bring up a decent human being. Visualise your grown-up child coping without you, but letting someone else help. What do they look like, how are they dealing with things, are they breathing, are they managing ok? Are they feeling good about being more independent? 
6. Wipe the slate clean and move on.  
Don’t allow punishments to drag on for weeks, make them short and relevant. This enables safe boundaries and builds trust. 
I hope these tips are helpful. If you would like to discuss your particular situation, please contact me in complete confidence at either or on 07412 651 894
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