Some days I need more of a mom time out than my own kids. As moms we spend so much time worrying about our kids and taking care of their needs. We sometimes don’t realize it’s time to also keep our own selves in check. Oftentimes we are so worried about our kids that we don’t realize that in reality our kids notice we aren’t happy. And the only thing they often are asking themselves is: “How to make you mom happy!” One of the best things we can do is to lead the way by showing the way, rather than just teaching it.
With babies, a toddler, or older kids around the home. Some days I find myself staring at the clock waiting for bed time. Especially in the middle of the week. When days can blend into one and during winter when it’s dark early and we spend a lot of time sitting at home. What to do when we are all at home and have run out of activities? During the school years where life seems so monotonous and taxing. I often find myself pacing around the home doing lots of household work. I feel overwhelmed. I also know that I need to take care of my mental health and myself, but I don’t know how to have ME time knowing I have to constantly keep an eye on the kids and keep them entertained. How to find more joy in this long journey. After all motherhood is happiness.
Here are the best reminders to help me turn a bad day into a better one. A list of thought processes and things to do with the children to help us all be in a better mood and relax a little bit.
- Every day with our children is a gift
Truly every day raising our children IS A GIFT. To raise children is a privilege. To be around children is a privilege. Children will teach us more than what we teach them if we let them.
We get to spend a few years along this journey with little ones that, yes will also break our heart at times. But especially when little, our children will love us unconditionally. They will look at us like we are their heroes. They will be our little best friends.
I have learned that when I can switch my mindset about parenting and focus on what I am thankful for in this long journey, what I do becomes less annoying. I see what I do as a privilege. I recognize more how what I do matters.
2. Don’t worry about solving every problem in the world
You know what else we need to do to be less stressed? As humans, especially good humans, sometimes we don’t realize that we develop a little bit of a hero mentality. We want to save and change the world and make it better. We want to change everything!
As humans throughout history we have always lived in communities. We only had to worry about the problems that were closer to us. With technology, while it’s true we can reach the ends of the earth. Problems from the ends of the earth also reach us. And we are not supposed to take on that much stress.
We take on the stress from problems that are far that we cannot solve. And the problem is that our bodies are now feeling this stress. It’s too much for our brains to handle. We aren’t meant to be taking it all. Throughout history we only worried about what was happening within walking distance. Or within a physical distance. Those are our neighbors, friends, and relatives living within our reach. Trying to take on the stress of everything that is being thrown at us in the world all at once is too much for our bodies to handle.
We are meant to worry only about what is close to us. What we can physically and humanly reach. That is already enough to worry about. That is just enough.
3. Let go of nighttime guilt by doing the following:
Mom guilt is a real thing. We feel guilty at the end of the day for all that we didn’t do. For what we said that was wrong. Blah blah blah! JK! I have done it plenty of nights in my life. The best favor we can do ourselves and our children is to spend the time we have when we are alone taking a break from motherhood. Just like any job, as moms we often struggle to turn off our brain from our mom shift. But breaks are needed. Especially in the evening we go into overload because we have been parenting all day. So our brain can shoot at us a million playbacks of the day. In reality we are basically hallucinating. We are stuck on playback repeat. Oftentimes we playback only the bad. A great way to recharge for the next day is to go to bed happy. They say you wake up feeling the way you felt when you went to bed. So bed time is a sacred time to recharge and do positive affirmations and look forward to a better day and future. I often pray at night time to release everything bad that I did. I apologize to God. I apologize to my kids if I need to. Then I work on shrugging off the guilt and finding time to unwind in a peaceful way. whether I journal, read a book, watch a show, spend time with my husband. We will do better to ourselves and our children if we pursue a hobby or something to help us get our mind off of our worries.
4. Love your children at each stage
As kids we couldn’t wait to grow up. As parents we want to prevent our children from growing up. When we get stuck in the past we don’t appreciate the present. Every stage has something to be loved. When we look at our children and love them at every stage we will regret less and stress less about parenthood.
I love to walk around the house and clean up each room before going to bed. I also love to touch and feel each one of my kid’s tiny hands and faces. I check for signs that they are still breathing. I also like to make physical contact because I want them to wake up tomorrow. I say a little prayer for their health as I watch them sleep. I love how peaceful they look. I see how precious they are no matter how old they are getting.
As they grow we will need to adapt how we interacted connect with our kids. Their needs will change. I am learning that the more I appreciate each stage, the less I regret what I did yestrday. The more I realize that they are always little no matter how big they are getting.
5. Turn a bad day into a good one with mother and son fun activities
Some days we like to have every kid do quiet time in their room. Depending on their age I allow them to choose an activity such as art, play doh, playing with a favoirite toy, or reading a book. I then go to my bedroom so I can turn on an online guided meditation.
Other days the kids keep knocking on my door telling me that they are bored and they seem to be as down as I am.
There comes an age where this advice will no longer be feasible. But when the little ones are around and kids and mom both need a time out, sometimes it’s time to let it all go and have some fun.
Sensory activities boost not only kids, but also adults. At any age doing activities that require our own hands can be calming and also a great way to pastime.
Hobbies is something that has become so overrated. But something so simple can be really rewarding. Kids learn to develop their fine motor skills and develop their tiny hand muscles with simple activities. Such as cutting a traced paper. Or from coloring in between the lines a picture. They also develop penmanship skills by spending time even just doodling, or following lines or tracing stencils.
Mixing food in a bowl. Screwing and unscrewing objects. Learning how to yarn. Learning how to make bows and glueing projects together. Crafts and hobbies are a great affordable way that can be fun both for mom and kids to create something with your own hands and have structured relaxing time together.
In culinary school you become a better chef by cutting not 1 potato but thousands of them. We can do that at home too. Our children need to develop skills. We also can develop lots of fine motor skills. It is not a waste of time to develop talents and skills that enrich who we are at a personal level. Maybe they don’t make us money. Maybe these things cost us a little bit of money. It is ok to invest a little in things that Bring us joy. The problem we have as adults is that we worry only about the bills and often don’t set up a budget for things that will enrich our lives in meaningful ways.
6. Music and dance
Something that lifts our mood at home is happy songs and music. Double that when we also turn in into a dance party. It’s our favorite way to forget about our troubles. I hate dancing in public. But I love to dance at home with my children. They allow themselves to feel the music and join hands with me while we turn around in circles. Even the moodiest child eventually will give in and join us to dance when we do. Dance is a great way to express and release emotions. I love that children won’t judge and will gladly join as well. Music can also help focus. We often play classical music so I dint have to worry about all the negative messages that are mixed with the most beautiful of modern tunes. Plus classical music is more refined. It’s soothing.
We make sure to select also fast paced music and upbeat tunes. Music can lift your mood. But sad songs can also bring back sad feelings. So when we need a mood boost, we make sure to select happy songs. when we do the dishes and chores instead, we select fast music to help us pick up the pace. It is proven that we match the tone of the music playing. Hence why restaurants play fast songs, and stores play party often sensual music.
7. Do something different and out of the ordinary.
Youth often seem so much happier than us. Kids get os excited at the sight of an airplane. It’s because it’s all new to them. Do you ever meet an employee that is super chipper and excited to help you? new things bring excitement. New things being growth. As adults we don’t realize that we often are stuck doing the same things over and over again. Things that sometimes we have outgrown. We stop stretching ourselves. We stop growing. Growing doesn’t necessarily mean changing career overnight. Although nowadays that is something worth looking into.
Growing means pursuing a new activity. A new passion. Something that we are afraid to try and never have. Something that we are not good at but want to become good at. Something we secretly wish we could do and have always wanted to. We live in a world where even adults can do dance, and gymnastics. I have seen adults accomplish the middle splits for the first time in the mid 30’s. New doesn’t end something that will cost money. We all have something we have always wished we could do. As adults we often focus so much on the skills we want our kids to accomplish. But completely write off our lives as if it was too late to try anything new. We can learn and pick up so many new skills and change in a matter of months. It’s a slow consistent path. A slow ladder that we can climb to show the way to our children as well. to also teach our children that it’s not just about them. that some day they will have a partner in life. And it’s ok for everyone in the house to take turns to accomplish something they like .
Moms are truly leaders in the home. Our kids watch us. And a truly happy mom is truly what can show everyone else that it is a mom who is living well.
Over the years I am learning that often times I worry about my kids more than themselves. I am seeing instead that the kids need me to be ok. They need me to be accomplished. They need me to be their hero. They need me to pave and lead the way. A happy mom is also a mom who will back off a little and allow her children to be. Because a lot of times our kids are more content than we are and are ok just where they are. They don’t need us to push them more. They don’t need more activities. It’s us who need to rebalance. It’s mom who needs an outlet. Mom who needs more fun. More rest. More hobbies. More relaxing. Just to be a little more at peace with life and fulfilled. The rest will fall into place after.