Mothers, make time for yourself!
It’s usually great being a mother! Yet sometimes it can be difficult to believe that we’re doing a great job. There are so many ways of being a mother – whether you work or stay at home; whether you take your kids to loads of extracurricular activities, or whether you are happy to read stories and get out the dressing up box. Mother’s Day is a chance to reflect on what it means to be a mother and to let our loved ones show how much they appreciate us!
Always putting your family first
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with admitting that being a mother can be very tough at times in different ways. From the seemingly endless sleepless nights and toil of the new-born weeks to the patience-testing times of toddlerhood and then the grey-hair inducing times of parenting teenagers. Being a mother can be exhausting and leave you questioning just who you really are outside of caring for your children. Many mothers in the UK, and indeed across the world, are conditioned to put the needs of children and family ahead of their own. However, it’s good, occasionally, to put yourself first – and this is also good for your family!
For the Mother’s who are always on the go
Mothers often have so many roles to fulfil. Many women on the popular UK parenting forum Mumsnet regularly write of a life of unequal responsibility – working mothers often returning from a busy day working to an evening of preparing the family’s meal, catching up on household chores, helping the children with their homework and finally getting on with the bedtime routine.
That’s without the toll of wife work – the term that describes the headspace devoted to the admin tasks of keeping the family going – birthdays, presents, car maintenance, shopping … the list is endless. Meanwhile, mothers who don’t work may often feel powerless and unequal in another way. One way things can improve is to take a step back and create time for yourself.
Simple ways for you to take care of yourself
Here are five practical steps to help you do just this:
Don’t forget the little things. How? Write a List. Write down what would make you happy. Remember the things that you loved before you had children.
What gives you a sense of life and energy?Are there any hobbies or activities you would like to resume or start that can help you prevent fatigue.
Communicate with your husband or partner. Is he pulling his weight and would he be prepared to take on some additional tasks to ease your load? Sit down as a couple and work out how many hours of leisure you both get each week. It should be roughly equal! If there is a clear imbalance and your husband is spending the weekend golfing whilst you look after the kids, something needs to change! It is in your husband’s interests as well to have a marriage where everyone’s needs are being met.
Single Mother’s– If you are a single mother, think about how you can make some time for yourself. Can you use a babysitter or family friend for a few hours each week? Other mums can be a great source of support, especially if they are in a similar position. It’s worth going to a toddler group in the early days simply to make those contacts.
Finally, in the words of the Dalai Lama ‘ spend some time alone each day’. This simple concept is vital to reconnect with yourself, even if it’s only going upstairs with a book for ten minutes.
For all Mother’s across the country, we wish you a Happy Mothering Day!
Sources: mumsnet.com, NHS.
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