Family & Relationships

7 Life Hacks to Deal with Empty Nest Syndrome

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If your child is preparing to move out of your home for the first time, it’s likely you're experiencing feelings and emotions associated with empty nest syndrome. It can be difficult to deal with a quiet home while also giving your child the freedom to enjoy their newfound independence.

Although it can be normal to suffer anxiety and sadness with the transition, there are a few ways you can deal with empty nest syndrome symptoms, resume your normal life and even discover exciting new opportunities.Get  back on schedule with these empty nester tips.

 

Top Tips for Empty Nesters

1. Stay busy as an empty nester.

For empty nesters who are not used to living without their children, it’s important to stay busy and maintain hobbies or activities throughout the week. Meet up with friends often to socialize and make it a point to exercise with activities such as tennis, jogging and yoga.

It's also important that you enjoy life instead of remaining too involved in your children’s schedules. Consider learning photography, taking art classes or volunteering to maintain a rich and active life that allows you to have activities to look forward to. You can also sign up for clubs or classes in your local area to meet other adults. 

2. Set a communication schedule.

Empty nesters may find it difficult to refrain from contacting their child each day with phone calls and text messages. This can cause parents to become too clingy, which can limit the freedom and independence of the children learning to be on their own for the first time.

Setting a schedule will prevent strain on the relationship and will also create healthy guidelines instead of you wondering if you should contact them every day.

3. Establish new goals.

Establishing goals or dreams you can work toward will allow you to maintain independence and feel fulfilled when the goals are accomplished. Consider creating goals that have been on the back burner for several years, which can include taking college courses, writing a book or running a marathon.

Pursuing new goals (and hobbies) will give you plenty of conversation topics for when you catch up with your kiddo during the week.

4. Revive the romance in your life.

Although struggling with empty nest syndrome depression and loneliness can be challenging, it also makes for the perfect opportunity to revive your romantic life and allow it to thrive. For many empty nesters, this is the first time that they can focus on themselves and their partner.

For parents who are dealing with a variety of empty nest syndrome symptoms, it can mean scheduling a date night once or twice a week and enjoying activities that include wine tasting, dancing with or cooking for one another. 

Empty nest syndrome and divorce can occur when children move out of the home, allow yourself to use this time to enjoy your partner’s company.

5. Seek out support.

One of the main mistakes many people make when dealing with an empty household is attempting to navigate the new environment alone. Instead of trying to remain strong on your own, it’s important to seek the support of your family members and friends. Be honest and open about the emotions that you’re experiencing and allow yourself to receive advice and support from your closest companions. You’ll be able to find comfort with those who are in the same stage of life as you and have the time to help you with the process.

6. Plan a vacation.

One of the most difficult places for empty nesters to be is in their own home after their children have moved out. If you find it challenging to stay home too much, consider planning a trip to a destination that you can visit with your spouse or with a friend. You’ll enjoy planning an itinerary, trying new activities and relaxing in a spectacular location that will allow you to escape.

Attempt to take a trip that offers plenty of adventure to take a break from thinking about your life back home.

7. Try to remain positive.

Empty nesting is hard. Let's face it. And while getting over your initial loss will take more than just grinning and bearing it, channeling a positive mindset can help boost your mood when empty nesting is the toughest. Instead of counting the days since your kid has been gone, look forward to the next time you'll see them. And being happy about your child entering this new stage of independence will give them the confidence they need to succeed and could help curb their homesickness. 

Accept this new change and focus on what you can control, including your newfound free time!

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