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Today Show on Secrets of Happy Moms. #1: Stop Trying So Hard.

the happy momJust weeks ago we were all talking about the Tiger Mom, baring her sharp teeth and claws to get the most out of her kids.

But Spring is in the air, and the mom of the moment is, appropriately more upbeat: Right now, it’s all about The Happy Mom. This season brings not one, but two books stressing the need for moms to pay attention to their personal happiness. Because, as The Happiest Mom author Megan Francis says, “It’s just as important to be a happy mom as a “good” one (whatever that means, right?)”

I’ll give that a resounding YES. Why?  You can make every sacrifice. Make every “right” choice for your kids. But if you’re unhappy with your life and your own choices, that unhappiness will rub off on your children.   A miserable mother makes for a miserable childhood. Just ask a therapist.

The pressures of motherhood can lead to or amp up existing anxiety and depression. This interfere with our personal happiness, and that in turn interferes with our ability to be good mothers, which makes us feel more pressure. These two books aim to stop the cycle.

The Happiest Mom: 10 Secrets to Enjoying Motherhood is published by Parenting Magazine and will be out in April. Author Megan Francis is a longtime blogger, writer and mom of five, and her book comes from personal experience. She describes her own unhappiness at an earlier stage of motherhood, and the secrets she learned that helped her turn a corner into happy mom-hood. You can pre-order it here.

Dr. Meg Meeker, whose book, 10 Habits of Happy Mothers, was featured The Today Show, is a pediatrician with 25 years of experience dealing with mothers of kids. She’s a mom herself, too, but the book definitely takes more of an expert tone. Here’s an excerpt:

“We stress over how well we are parenting and if we are taking full advantage of other opportunities. We wonder if we should work outside the home (of course, some of us don’t wonder, because we have to). Others wonder whether we are working too much or too little. And there is so much more. We worry about whether or not our kids are given enough opportunities, whether their friends like them or if they are being bullied at school or at day care. But mostly, we worry about what we can do for our kids in order to make their lives better. We do this because we really want to be good at mothering. We want to get it right, just as we want to get our jobs right.

This need — to get parenting right — has become an obsession for many of us. It consumes our thinking, our energy, and our time. Let me be clear: Striving to be a great mom is a noble goal, and as a pediatrician, I applaud those who choose it. But that’s not what I’m referring to. I am talking about a full-blown obsession with getting mothering right. And it is taking many of us down.”

See Meg Meeker on the Today Show in the video below.

photo:ladydragonfly/flickr

 

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