Being a mother is one of the most challenging, yet rewarding jobs in the world. Ever since the beginning of the human race, mothers have been the source of care and nurturance that have enabled the next generation to flourish.
If you’re a mom, you already know this to be true in your bones. We moms are called upon to commit to challenges that we never thought we were up to. We’re called to be kind and patient even when we haven’t slept for more than 2 hours straight for months on end. We are called to recognize the needs of another person and respond to them, even when we have yet to respond to our own basic needs of hunger, thirst (and taking a private pee).
Because this motherhood gig has a way of tearing us apart, just so we can put ourselves back together in greater form, it requires that WE are also well taken care of.
The secret to being an amazing mom is really to be amazing at taking care of YOU!
The math is simple. You can only GIVE something IF you have something to give. In reality you can only be patient and loving to your kids IF you have patience and love to give.
We’ve all heard the saying “You can’t love someone else until you learn to love yourself”. Psychologist and therapist have been teaching this to their clients for years and the science behind this statement is solid.
The only way to love and care for the next generation as moms, is to be incredibly diligent about loving and caring for ourselves. We accomplish this through taking the necessary time away from our families and other obligations to nurture ourselves regularly.
It takes patience, kindness, compassion and love to raise kind, compassionate and loving children.
By committing to our own self-care we not only become better parents, we also become better PEOPLE.
Because, when we take time away to cultivate love and compassion we get to use those attributes not only in our parenting, but also in our interactions with the greater world around us! In other words, when we take care of ourselves, WE DO EVERYONE A FAVOR!
There are 2 BIG obstacles I see in moms that block them from fully enjoying motherhood.
Obstacle # 1 – Giving Themselves Permission to Care For Their Own Needs
The issue here is that we have been trained in most Western cultures to think of “down time” as some sort of luxury. Many of us believe that “doing” is productive, and “being” is a waste of time.
This couldn’t be farther from the truth! Taking time away regularly to reflect and regroup actually makes us MORE productive and MORE capable of interacting kindly with others.
The point is, we moms have to love ourselves MORE than we love anyone else.
No one else is going to give you permission to take care of you! Because there is NO ONE else in the world who CAN take care of you!
So we have to DECIDE to do it for ourselves and allow ourselves to feel good about that decision!
And this brings me to my next point.
Obstacle # 2 – Finding Time To DoThis
Let’s face it, we all get the same 24 hours in a day. And a mom typically has significantly more things on her plate to get done than a woman without children.
Add to that, the fact that we have this all or nothing approach to live in general. We tell ourselves things like “Well since I don’t have time to work out at the gym for an hour, then I might as well not work out at all today”. Or “since I can’t take 30 minutes to meditate, I might as well not practice meditation at all.”
This is another fallacy, that doesn’t work within the “world” of motherhood. As moms we have to be even more creative with our time. And finding a pocket of 5 minutes to read, journal, meditate or do some squats and jumping jacks, is better than doing NONE at all.
The key to getting anything done as a mom is to schedule it in and write it down. Rituals and routines are NOT just for babies.
Humans are conditioned to be creatures of habit. So if we make a routine (and write it down) out of caring for ourselves then that routine will start to “fit” seamlessly into the context of our lives.
So schedule in time to go to the gym or take a walk outside with the kids. Schedule in 20 minutes while the baby naps to read, write or meditate. Ask your partner or other family member to watch the kids one evening while you go to a local Paint and Sip with your girlfriends.
The added bonus here, is that those little eyes are watching you! As your children see you taking care of yourself and making YOU a priority, they also learn how to be more loving towards themselves and others.
Remember: You are important. You are worthy. You being well allows your kids to be well!
Share With Us! What Is YOUR Biggest Obstacle To Enjoying Life As Mom?