Monday, October 10, 2011

How to maintain balance in your blended family or step family

This is a scenario played out all too often in a blended family. The kids aren’t getting along, your spouse seems upset, and you feel like you haven’t had a moment to yourself in eons! This means that the balance in your stepfamily is thrown off. Maintaining balance within a blended family is much harder than a typical family with a single mom, dad, and kids who live there all the time. Things get much more difficult when you throw divorce, remarriage, step kids and a step mom or step dad into the mix.

You can’t live without balance and just concentrate on whoever is complaining the most. Going from person to person trying to deal with issues may seem like you are helping everyone, when in actuality, you are helping no one. Therefore, the big question is wondering how to create the necessary balance.

Here are some instruction of how to achieve and maintain a balance in your blended family.

Make some time just for you. There can’t possibly be enough time each day to be able to dedicate time for yourself. Well, that may be true to some extent, but you better find some! The truth is that if you keep going and going, doing everything you can to ensure that your blended family is cared for, you will end up completely burnt out and be virtually useless to them. Just stop and think about those really bad days you have with your step family.

You know which days I mean- the ones where you quickly lose your temper and are storming around the house crying or yelling at every member of your blended family. You find yourself unable to be a good spouse or loving parent. Yep, those are the days. This is when you have not taken care of yourself well enough. Loving your step family means loving yourself. The truth is that you can’t please everyone 24 hours a day, so stop trying and look out for yourself now and again. You deserve a little “me” time.

Relax: There are many ways you can unwind after a long and hectic day. You could take a nice long bath, read a great book, and have a sip of wine or tea. Perhaps going for a walk to the gym relaxes you. Thinking that you don’t have time for this is not acceptable, because you can make the time. What you don’t have time for is NOT relaxing! Just think of what relaxes you and work it into your schedule somewhere. Write these down on a list and post it for yourself.

Stay energized: Just as important as relaxing is staying upbeat and energized. So, what energizes you and provides you with strength? How about a shopping trip or a movie? What about a nice phone conversation with your best friend? Figure out which activity gives you strength and work that into your routine at least a few times each month. You will be surprised at how much better you will be able to function in your blended family once you do this.

If you need advice with your blended or stepfamily, The Blended and Step Family Resource Center is ready to assist you with its counseling and coaching services, as well as other resources aimed at promoting strong and successful blended and stepfamilies. Contact us today and let us help to provide you with answers.

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