Motherhood is not for the weak. We all know that. It’s a tough job, if not the toughest. You have so much on your plate, including molding a child into an independent, honest human being that will be a good member of society. No big deal. The problem that I have noticed, though, is that some moms have a few bad habits that they need to break. No one is perfect, but we all need to slow down sometimes and take a step back to look at the important things in life. So mom, if you know you are struggling with a few of these habits, I hope you take my advice and give yourself some grace and work on breaking them.
1. Telling yourself that you’re not good enough.
You are MORE than good enough. You are taking care of your family, nurturing them, encouraging them, teaching them, and so much more. If you are worrying that you may not be a good mom, more than likely, that means that you are a great one. It’s the ones that are always wanting to improve, give more love and more patience to their children that are great mothers. We all have bad days, but we need to forgive ourselves in those moments, ask for forgiveness, and try better next time. Your children will forgive you. Just remember you are a good mother, and you are more than good enough.
2. Not taking care of YOU.
We are always explaining to others–especially ourselves–how we are too busy to do this or that for ourselves. Why is it that when it comes to our own health and happiness, we just don’t have the time? We need to remember that happy and healthy kids need happy and healthy mothers. It’s impossible to pour from an empty cup, so make sure that you start scheduling in the time to take care of you to fill your own cup. It will allow you to give more back to your loved ones.
3. Putting your marriage on the back burner.
It’s easy always to put the kids first. They need you more. They are more dependent on you. These are things that we tell ourselves. But the best gift that you can give your children is to show them that you love their father. It gives them comfort and peace knowing that they have a strong foundation for their family.
I hear a lot of people say that their kids come first. I’m sure you’ve heard people say that as well. But remember that one day your kids will grow up and will all leave the nest. I know, it’s a sad thought, but when that day comes, it’s just you and your partner once again looking at each other. At that point, you may not even recognize who you are looking at anymore if you don’t make it a priority to put your marriage first. You will realize just how much you both have changed, and you may not have much in common anymore. So put the time in for date nights, pillow talk, and even flirt with your spouse. It’s best for your family, especially your kids.
4. Looking at your phone more than those around you.
All that your kids want from you is your love, attention and for you to be proud of them. They want to show you everything and talk to you about every detail. Yes, it can get quite annoying and repetitive, but as you know, it won’t always be this way. One day they will want their privacy and will probably not want to share things with you. So in the moments when your kid is calling out “mom” or “mommy” for the millionth time in a row, put the phone down. Social media will always be there. But these moments won’t. Put the phone down, the tablet down, the computer away, or whatever it is and cherish this time with your littles.
5. Not asking for help.
You can’t do it all. No one can. So don’t feel like you’re a failure or that you’re not good enough if you need help. It’s actually a strength to be able to ask for help. It’s showing that you want more for yourself and your family. We all need a helping hand from time to time, and that’s more than okay.
6. Saying “yes” to everything and everyone else but yourself.
We all need to learn how to gracefully say “no.” I understand more than anybody how difficult this may be. I have a hard time with this myself. We as mothers tend to give so much of ourselves–especially to our kids–but we also need to take the time to say yes to us and our needs. Set your boundaries and recognize when you are stretching yourself out too thin. Field trips, class parties, and all additional volunteer duties can wait. Sometimes you just need a night where you can take a long bubble bath and enjoy a glass of wine. Say yes to you!
7. Trying to keep up with the Joneses.
I think that the majority of us are always comparing ourselves to others and trying to “keep up with the Joneses.” It’s human nature. But let’s try and take that out of our minds. It may seem important right now, but your kids aren’t going to remember or care about all the toys and clothes that you got them, they are going to remember and cherish the moments that you shared together and how you made them feel.
8. Expecting too much out of the day.
We all have mile long to-do lists—especially moms. But sometimes, you have to tell yourself that the dishes and the laundry can wait. They will be there tomorrow, and you need to take a break and a deep breath. There is only so much that you and the kids can accomplish in one day. And things come up and happen. That’s life. Just remind yourself that you are only human and focus on one thing at a time. Let’s not sweat the small stuff. Tomorrow is a new day.
9. Feeling bad for ordering take out. Again.
You may think that the perfect mom is always making fresh, all homemade organic meals for her family every day. But seriously, unless that is the only job that mom has, that woman does not exist. As I mentioned before, things happen. We are all doing our best. So don’t feel bad if you have to order delivery or pick up take out again. The kids are alive, and you’re making it through another day.
10. Worrying about what other people think.
Life is way too short to worry about what other people think of you or your family. They probably don’t understand your circumstances and what you have gone through or are going through. The people that really matter in your life are understanding and will not judge. And honestly, the only people’s thoughts that you should be worried about are your kids. May they forever know and be reminded just how much they are loved by you and blessed to have you as their mother.
Those are the 10 bad habits I think more moms need to break. Trust me. I get it. Everyone has bad days, and everyone has off days. But the most important thing is that you recognize your off days, be gentle and forgiving towards yourself, and remind yourself that every day, every minute, every second is a brand new chance to start over. That’s one of the beautiful things about life. So cheers to life and cheers to a new day!