Say Goodbye to the Mom (or Dad) Guilt
For many of us, parenthood becomes a huge part of our identity. It’s crazy how we can easily forget what life was like before children (B.C.). Any parent knows that you have less time for yourself when you have children, and let’s not forget how easily guilt can set in.
Anything can turn into a reason to feel guilty. Everything from,
I didn’t spend enough time playing with the kids.
I didn’t get the house clean because I was working or playing with the kids.
I’m too strict.
I’m not strict enough.
I should be happy all the time because I get to stay home with my kids and other moms would love to be in my shoes.
to the biggest guilt inducer for parents,
I lose my patience and snap or yell at my kids.
Do any of these sound familiar?
You’re not alone. I know. I’ve been there. And still there are times I think some of these but it’s way less now than before.
For years I struggled with guilt, finding balance between time for myself, my family and my work. My days would immediately begin by crossing things off my to-do list, which usually meant taking care of others first. Anytime I thought to do something for myself the usual mom-guilt would take over.
I was exhausted and stressed out with burnout. Even though I was busy “doing” I still lie awake at night feeling I couldn’t power-off and thinking that perhaps I didn’t do enough.
But finally I realised this behaviour doesn’t serve my family or me at all.
Truth is, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
Self-care is so important, even more so when you’re a parent tending to the needs of little human beings.
When you take the time out to nourish yourself you’ll have much more to give and you’ll be better equipped to handle the stress and chaos of every day life.
Any amount of time doing your “own thing” will not only top up your energy reserves but can also contribute to a more interesting life – for you, your spouse and your children.
It’s a delicate balance, but there are ways that can support you, so you’re not just running from one thing to the next, but actually enjoying this wild ride of motherhood (or fatherhood).
Above all, trust that you can have it all.
You can have peace, balance and happiness while juggling the demands of parenthood.
You are 100% responsible for giving all that and more to yourself. No one else can do that for you.
Here are my top six tips to start saying goodbye to the mom (or dad) guilt and do the things you love – the things that will feed your soul and connect you back to you:
- Start in peace. Wake up before your children, even if it’s just 15 minutes. This sacred time can be very supportive for your entire day. Doing something first that will nourish yourself will help you be better equipped when you give to others. My encouragement is to have a practice of meditation, even if it’s just 5 minutes.
- Get support. There’s no shame in paying someone to help – anything from cleaning the house, cooking a meal, or taking the kids to their activities. Ever hear the saying “it takes a village”? Well it’s true! Hire a professional, have an extra (vetted) pair of hands and gain some time in your day. Use that extra time to do something that will nourish you – and only you.
- Let go. Choose your battles wisely and let stuff go. When we focus too much on our expectation of motherhood, on our children and how life should be that’s when we create stress and anxiety. Accept that there’s no such thing as perfect, only progression. If you’re finding this difficult then continue #1.
- Date night. Remember who you were as a couple B.C. Book a sitter and go out for dinner, see a movie, or meet up with your friends. And whatever you do (I know this one’s hard) try to talk about something other than the kids. If you’re finding this hard then perhaps do more of #2.
- Girls’ (or boys’) night. This is just as important as #4 because this is all part of remembering and honouring you as an individual – separate from being a wife and mother (or husband and father). Here it could actually be nice spending some time commiserating about parenthood as a reminder that no one is perfect.
- Don’t compare. There will be different seasons in your life and the life of your children, with some more challenging than others. Working mothers could feel guilty about not spending enough time with their kids, whereas stay-at-home mothers may feel guilty for not bringing home a paycheck. This isn’t a competition, so acknowledge that you’re doing your best with what you have, for you and your family.
When I see mothers (or fathers) exhausted, stressed out and living off fumes I feel their pain and can sympathise. I learned the hard way (literally), which is why it’s my passion to help others make life just a little bit easier and a whole lot more beautiful.
Life is a juggle but shouldn’t be a struggle.
This is why I created Nourish Yourself, a private Facebook group with two full weeks of love and guidance from me.
For two weeks I’ll be streaming live which makes for a much more magical experience. I’ll be guiding the group through meditations, sharing empowerment tools and encouraging daily assignments that will inspire and motivate you to remember and come back to yourself.
And if you don’t have children then great! This work can be even more accessible to you.
If you or someone you know can use some extra support I invite you to join me for this special virtual event, from anywhere in the world, all from the comforts of your home (or office).
You’ll RECEIVE all of this for only $99. This early bird price ends THIS Sunday the 16th and will go up to $149 thereafter.
I invite you to ask yourself,
What’s the cost to me if I don’t join?
My prayer is that you believe just how important your growth and happiness truly is worth.
As always, I’d love connecting with you and hear about your experience of saying goodbye to your mom (or dad) guilt. What did you do and how has it changed your life? Head over to the comments section below to share your thoughts.
With love and gratitude,