21 Expert Tips for Parents Who Are Barely Surviving the Chaos

Inside: In this post, we’re doing something different than usual. Instead of me (and Jason) doing all the talk, I sat down with some of my favorite parenting experts. Today, you’ll read a sneak peek from my expert talk as I asked them their biggest advice for those parents who are barely surviving the chaos.

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On the brochure, parenting looks like a rewarding journey filled with beautiful moments, love, and growth. 

We are never really quite prepared for the reality of blue-faced apoplectic children scratching at his sister because she took the blue lego.  The constant walking on eggshells, waiting for the inevitable shoe to drop pushes us parents to our limits as we strive to provide only the best for our children, on top of navigating the tricky waters of work, relationships, school advocacy, and the milk going off.

When I speak with parents, one of the common things that I hear from them is, “I’m really struggling.” “We are barely surviving”  Or, at times, it sounded like, “You have no idea what it’s like.”

Dear parents, I do know what it’s like.  I’ve been exactly where you are now.  I know how hard you are trying and how hopeless you feel when it doesn’t seem to be enough.

I know how it feels when each day seems like a battle you don’t have the energy to face.

I know how it feels when you can barely keep your head above water.

I know how it feels when you feel like nobody understands and you are completely alone. 

But here’s the thing, you’re not alone.

And it doesn’t have to stay this way.

To help you escape survival mode, I asked people who have been there and done just that.  I sat down with some of my good friends and favorite parent experts and asked them what they wished they had known back then. 

And the answers I got were GOLD!
And when you order our Calm the Chaos book, you’ll get access to every single video file for LIFE, so if you haven’t grabbed your copy, now is the time – click here!)

The Magic of Letting Go

It’s easy to fall into the trap of believing that your happiness and contentment as parents are based upon a series of “if only” conditions.

“If I had more support.”

“If my kids would just listen.”

“If only my kids would behave.”

“If only we had more time.”

“If I was just a better parent.”

Only then, you tell yourself, you’d finally be able to rest or enjoy your parenting journey.

We’re constantly putting our joy off until things are better.

But here’s the reality.

This constant pursuit of a “better future” can overshadow the beauty of the present and prevent us from truly connecting and understanding our children and ourselves.

The Illusion of Control

One of the reasons we cling to those “only ifs” is the illusion of control.

Many of us spend a lot of time trying to orchestrate every detail in the hope we can ensure a good outcome.  We try to ensure our kids can sit still at the table, so they can sit still and concentrate at school, so they can get a good job. 

But we are building a house of cards.

Life is unpredictable.  And children are their own unique people with their own journeys to navigate.

If we could slowly let go of the need to be in control in every aspect of their lives, it would free us, parents, from stress and allow us to be more present and adaptable to change.

Letting Go Isn’t a Defeat

Letting go isn’t a sign of defeat; it’s an act of self-compassion.

We need to accept that we’re doing the best we can with the resources that we have.

When you let go and start accepting yourself and your kids just as you are, you open yourselves up to genuine connections, authentic experiences, and growth.

Instead of saying, “If only my kids would listen, it would mean I’m a good parent “ 

Swap for “What if I’m good enough just as I am?”

What if we extend the same belief to our children?

What if we acknowledge that our current lives, with all their imperfections and challenges, are already good enough?

What if we start living in the moment with our kids?

These shifts in perspective allow us to find joy in the everyday moments– like when they help their brother without being asked, or when they reach for your hand on a walk.  Things that we’d barely notice when we’re stuck in a loop with our negative what ifs.

So don’t judge your now against a “better future” or try to force your kids into a round hole. See them as they are, and help them create their own unique future.

To know more about these parenting tips–from the executive function to mindfulness, to autism and ADHD (and more)–check out the full episode on YouTube.

To letting go,


– – –

Calm the Chaos Parenting is a podcast offering parents practical tools and strategies to navigate the challenges of raising strong-willed, highly sensitive, and neurodivergent children.

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