In the Mommy Trenches? 6 Ways to Feed Your Spirit

Yesterday afternoon I left my children playing the family room so that I could take an important phone call. In the 10 or so minutes  they were out of my sight, the following happened:

An entire bag of sugar was dumped on the kitchen floor because my daughter wanted to have a tea party.

The laundry I’d folded had been tossed all around the room because my son thought the bedsheets would make a fantastic tent.

My recently professionally cleaned carpet had “washable” finger paint splattered on it, because remember the laundry basket? My kids had decided to paint it red.
Yesterday was not a good day (and I won’t even get into the 3 hours of 4th grade homework I supervised).

Every week, it seems like there’s always one day like yesterday, when I’m knee-deep in the mommy trenches. Sometimes I feel like locking myself in my bedroom, curling up in the fetal position and crying because I don’t feel like being the mommy— I want MY mommy!

I know I’m not alone.

It’s times like that when what I really need is to feed my mommy spirit, gain control, and focus. Here are six simple things that work for me. I hope they help you too.

  • Think Good Thoughts 1 of 6
    Think Good Thoughts
    It sounds simple, but it works! Make a happiness list. Remember the last compliment you were given, or the last kind deed you did for another person. Happiness is contagious!
  • Keep an Inspirational Quote Jar 2 of 6
    Keep an Inspirational Quote Jar
    Make a list of your favorite quotes (here are some great ones!) and keep them in a jar in your home. Take a moment each day to pull one out at random and reflect on its meaning.
  • Don’t Expect Perfection, but Work Toward It 3 of 6
    Don't Expect Perfection, but Work Toward It
    As moms we put a lot pressure on ourselves to be superwomen. Remember that perfection in any area is impossible to attain, so instead strive to find a balance that works for you and your family.
  • Surround Yourself with Positive People 4 of 6
    Surround Yourself with Positive People
    A few years ago I made a decision: I was only going to nurture those relationships in my life that were healthy and supportive. Negativity can be a toxic influence.
    Photo Credit: D Sharon Pruitt/Flickr
  • Remember That This is Your Happily Ever After 5 of 6
    Remember That This is Your Happily Ever After
    If you're like me, you spent many, many years dreaming of what life would be like once you had a family of your own. Guess what? This is it. You're here. This is your happily ever after. It may not be a little girl's fairy tale, but life's pretty sweet, right? Even with its inevitable difficulties, you can find ways to be grateful for what you already have and the things that are going well in your life.
  • Be Gentle with Yourself 6 of 6
    Be Gentle with Yourself
    I'll admit it: there are days I fall short of the expectations I have for myself. But instead of beating myself up about it, I think about what I can do differently. Usually that involves recognizing the importance of self-care and "me time." Resentment and stress multiply when I don't take care of myself.
    Photo Credit: D Sharon Pruitt/Flickr

What do you do to feed your spirit?

Mary Lauren Weimer is a social worker turned mother turned writer. Her blog, My 3 Little Birds, encourages moms to put down the baby books for a moment and tell their own stories. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

More by Mary Lauren:
Expert Tips for Tackling Tough Toddler Questions
Lengthening the Fuse: 5 Tips for Becoming a More Patient Mom

What I’ll Miss about the Toddler Years

20 simple ways to show your kids you love them
18 questions all parents secretly ask themselves
20 ways my kids have made me a better person
25 things every kid should experience
20 little things you can do to de-stress throughout the day

Article Posted 4 years Ago
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