Have you ever felt overwhelmed, overworked and wearing way too many hats?
There are plenty of times that I wish for a magical fairy who would go to the office for me, then come home and cheerfully tidy up the house, pay the household bills, settle disputes among the kidlets, do the grocery shopping and put dinner on the table.
Ahhhhh, if only I could plant myself on the sofa for even one evening and read a book, watch TV, or flip through my favorite magazines without having to get up a million times to either change laundry from washer to dryer, let the dog in/out, answer work emails, it would feel like such a luxury!
So this edition of “5 Things You Need to Know About…” is devoted to Moms and tips on how to get a handle on things and keep it real:
1 – Ask for Help and Accept it When it’s Offered – This is probably one of the hardest things for any mom, new or otherwise, to do. I’ve been a mom for more than eight years and this one is still hard for me, but I’m getting better at it. There’s no way I can do it all – I’m not Superwoman, and I realize that that’s okay. Asking for help or accepting it when it’s offered to you isn’t burdening someone else with your responsibility, it’s just sharing the load. It’s like that Proverb “many hands make light work,” and it’s true!2 – Prioritize Things That Need to Be Done – Rome wasn’t built in a day, why should your life or family be any different? Not everything has to be done in one single day. Give yourself permission to prioritize your life and list what’s most important to you for that day, week or month and tackle it that way instead of killing yourself by trying to do it all. I find days are much less stressful when I set 3-5 goals/activities, and I feel a real sense of accomplishment at the end of the day, which is great for my mom ego!
3 – Accept That You’re Going to Live with a Certain Amount of Chaos – Life is messy, and that doesn’t change when you become a mom. It gets worse. No matter how much you plan and think you’re prepared, there will always be things that you cannot control and throw everything into a state of flux. If you let them, these things can be a huge source of anger, frustration and stress. My kids always get sick on days I have important meetings or events. There always seems to be a last minute or emergency meeting when I’m trying to leave the office early to my kid’s game, scout meeting or choral concert. Lunches, homework, permission slips, presentations, parties, events – are either forgotten or delivered late. You just have to be willing to go with the flow. Things will always work out. It may not necessarily be the way that you planned, hoped or took longer than anticipated, but they always do.
4 – Treat Yourself/Rest – No while being a mom means that you make sacrifices for your child and put their needs ahead of your own, it in no way means you shouldn’t ever do anything for yourself. If you don’t recharge and take care of yourself, you’ll be no good to anyone – that means family, work, friends and most of all, to yourself. It doesn’t have to be extravagant; sometimes it’s the small things. So go ahead, treat yourself to a mani/pedi, grab coffee with the girls, head over to the gym for that yoga class or my personal favorite, go to the hair salon and get your hair washed and blown out. Life’s much more pleasant when you allow yourself small pleasures.
5 – Focus on the Now – Don’t get me wrong here, planning ahead and anticipating is something moms must do – but don’t go too far ahead. It’s important to remember that when you’re with your family – they should be your focus. So make sure to seize the moment. Put off checking emails, making phone calls or doing other busy work. Take the time to listen to your child’s corny joke, play a board game, have a tea party or go for a bike ride. Those are the moments that make you feel best as a parent, and they create many a memory for parent and child alike.
Now it’s your turn to share. What’s your tip to avoid getting overwhelmed and overworked?
Copyright © 2016 The Harried Mom. All Rights Reserved.