Working Parents – Managing Workplace and Parenting Stress

Every morning you scurry around your home preparing your family for the day.  Walk the dog, pack lunches, zipper up the kids’ coats, grab backpacks and run out the door just in time to meet the school bus.  You’re halfway to the office, mentally preparing for your work day, when you realize that you’ve forgotten critical presentation notes at home.

Welcome to the stressful life of a typical working parent.  Being a parent is not easy and can be frustrating and stressful.  But working parents face a double whammy when job stresses intensify parental pressures.

Parenting Stress Affects Work Performance All jobs have some degree of stress.  Being a parent comes with its own stressors.  Combine the two and you have a recipe for too much stress that can affect job performance.

Parents worry at work even when children are well cared for in school, day care and babysitting arrangements.  In addition to job issues, parents can be preoccupied with concerns such as:

Work Stresses Affect Parenting Wellness You may leave work at the end of the day, but your brain doesn’t.  It’s difficult not to let job stress spill over into your family life.

Children pick up on their parent’s stress which can cause feelings of shame and guilt.  An inability to manage stress can affect all personal relationships.  Compounding workplace stress with typical personal stressors such as financial, marital difficulties, troubled child or illness can add to existing family tensions.

 Working Parents – Managing Workplace and Parenting Stress

If you’ve identified an employee whose work performance is suffering due to parental issues, counsel the manager or supervisor to make an EAP referral.  An EAP professional can:

It’s probably impossible to eliminate all stress from our lives, but it should be feasible to manage it.  An EAP professional can assist employees in working through both workplace and parenting stress to help the employee better cope with both.

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