Valery Panyushkin: 5 rules for parents against burnout
In a way, I’m an expert on despair. For twenty years I have been writing about seriously ill children. I am often asked what I do so as not to go crazy. Over the years, I have developed five rules against burnout.
I believe that these rules are useful to know for all parents, especially mothers. Because being a parent is an emotional job, and burnout happens sooner or later on any emotional job.
Emotional work, on the one hand, captures, gives creative strength, and on the other hand, burns out, especially if you behave incorrectly.
The first rule is to very accurately determine the goal. Say, when I write about a sick child, I do not set a goal to cure him – the doctor will treat the child. My goal is not to raise money – the fund will collect it. My goal is to tell a story about the child. That’s it, period.
With parenting the same thing. When I stay with children, I try to articulate my goals very clearly. Why am I here? To raise a happy person? – No. To grow successful? – No. I just make sure they don’t get killed. It helps a lot to save power.
The next rule that I have developed for myself is that you need to give up gratitude. Waiting for gratitude is a terrible thing that draws a ton of energy. In my practice, there was a girl with cancer, for which we raised one and a half million dollars. A million and a half! And she died. It happens.
Do not expect from children that they will correspond to the efforts put into them or nerves, or money. I simply forbade it to myself. If I give Rachmaninov’s Second Concerto to the child, but he still prefers Metallica – it’s none of my business! My job is to stage the second concert.
And whether he loves Rachmaninov or not is his choice. I know that giving up gratitude is very difficult, but it is a very important remedy for burnout.
The third rule is this: do not seek to “do good.” You don’t need to catch up with a person and say: “Now I will do you well!” Moreover, nobody – a wife, a husband, a child, all the more. Children themselves are drawn to knowledge, so it makes no sense to run after them, who have not yet learned to walk, with the words: “Look, this is a primer!”, Or: “These are letters!”, Or: “Let’s go, I will take you to the sensory room!” “.
He does not want to enter the sensory room; he himself everywhere finds new sensations. Children do not need to “do good.” It consumes a lot of energy, and does not bring any benefit.
The fourth rule from burnout: you must have a supervisor. Find someone you believe. Someone who at the right time will be able to come and say: “You are tired,” and you will believe. And believe me, even if you have finally “demolished the tower.” Because in the normal state, you yourself understand that you are tired.
But in the state when you are so tired that you are no longer able to think, just need a trusted person. Someone who can, without taking advantage of this, give you good advice from a pure heart or just listen to it.
Finally, the fifth rule is sport. Alcohol is also a good thing, but gives side effects. But sport is what we need. Personally, I prefer boxing. Do you know why? It is necessary to choose sports in which it is difficult to hack. In boxing, as soon as you start hacking, you immediately get in the nose. Great sport
And the last thing I want to say: do not be afraid of failure. Not so long ago, we, with the popularly beloved actress Chulpan Khamatova, discussed her foundation, in whose activities I take a rather active part. The fund has been around for seven years, and there was not a single day when we would have a sense of success. On the contrary, every day there was a feeling that nothing works, absolutely!
But when you look back, you understand that ten years ago in Russia children with blood cancer died in 96% of cases, and now in 75% of cases they recover, and this, in general, we did …
This is an amazing effect, when every day you have a failure, and if you look back, everything is awesome! In my opinion, the story is exactly the same with children. Every day you have the feeling that nothing is happening, and then you look – this is how beautiful he has grown!
I don’t know if these rules will help you find energy, but they will definitely help you not to lose.