This article is supported by Curaleaf.
Whether it’s financial, professional, spousal, familial, or otherwise, stress will find a way into every parent’s life. And it has impacts — from weight gain to sleeplessness to ennui — that can be particularly difficult for them to mitigate. That’s why it’s essential for those charged with taking care of children to also take care of themselves, to ensure that they dedicate time to their own wellness and spend it wisely.
For an increasing number of parents, that means incorporating cannabis into their wellness routine. If you’re interested, the first step is talking to a physician who provides medical cannabis recommendations. They’ll be able to help you decide both whether you should add cannabis to your own wellness practices and how to do it safely and effectively.
Here are ten things parents can try—with or without doctor-recommended cannabis—to effectively manage the stress that everyone who has raised or is raising a kid knows all too well.
- Clear your mind with a long walk. Regardless of where you walk, a long stroll is a fantastic way to do some thinking while getting some exercise. And if you’re struggling with pain that makes long walks difficult, medical cannabis may relate to easing discomfort, allowing you to pound the pavement for longer.
- Meditate. It can feel kind of silly (or just plain hard) to a lot of folks, but the science-backed mental and physical benefits of meditation are anything but. So while you might feel foolish sitting in the Lotus position or reciting a mantra, it’s worth trying out. And if it doesn’t come naturally, cannabis might put you in a more meditative mindset.
- Take advantage of the gap between your families’ bedtime and your own. Whether you use it to quietly read a book, watch a non-family-friendly movie or pursue a hobby, it’s important to take advantage of that magical part of the day when you don’t have to worry about monitoring or entertaining the rest of the family. It’s also a great time, with the day’s headaches behind you, to take an adult break with some cannabis.
- Make sure you get a good night’s sleep. If you’re having trouble getting enough shuteye, an over-the-counter sleep aid like melatonin can help. You can also speak with your physician to find out if a certain kind of medical cannabis might reduce your tossing and turning.
- Have a family dance party. Music plus energetic dancing equals an endorphin rush and a treasured family member for everyone. And modeling the OK-ness of being silly and unconcerned with appearances is also a good lesson for your family.
- Don’t forget date night. Spending one-on-one time alone with your spouse is something every coupled parent should do, so it’s important to stick to a regular schedule of date nights. You can head to the movies, do a night on the town, or get creative with it. Some parents might couple such romantic activities with cannabis to make their alone time all the more enjoyable.
- Stretch. You don’t have to be a full-blown yogi to recognize the power of stretching. Taking some time to limber up every day, with or without yoga classes, can mean fewer aches and pains as you get older. Stretching also releases endorphins, hormones that can have analgesic effects. Another way to loosen up and manage those aches? You guessed it, cannabis, which is often recommended by doctors for patients dealing with chronic pain.
- Make a home-cooked meal. Break out the pots and pans and make something special for dinner at least once a week. When you control the menu, you can make healthy, delicious meals, and the act of cooking itself, from chopping vegetables to roasting meats, can be oddly relaxing. And it’s not a secret that those leftovers could taste even better after a puff or two of cannabis. Bon apetit.
- Get a creative hobby. The specific activity you choose, from drawing to pottery to whittling, matters less than taking the time to learn and hone a new skill. It’s always healthy to have an outlet for creative energy, and cannabis could help you approach artistic endeavors and problem solving (and learning a new skill always presents plenty of problems) with an open mind.
- Hit the museum. Most museums are quiet spaces dedicated to contemplation, whether of science, history, or art. Once you realize that they’re as good for relaxation as they are education, you’ll want to become a regular. And if your doctor recommends adding cannabis to your wellness routine, museums are great places to roam while enjoying its effects.
The statements in this story are solely those of Fatherly and not Curaleaf. Laws governing the legality, availability and use of cannabis vary by state.