Us mothers today can feel as though we never win. Making time for ourselves plagues some mother’s with guilt. Guilt that we are not paying enough attention to our children, not present to our children. We put everything into being a mother, we feel our children’s ups and downs, we put their needs and wants before our own. By doing this however our self esteem can take dips. Suddenly we find ourselves ticking every box for our children but our boxes remain empty.
Not maintaining a healthy self esteem and making time for ourselves may actually have a negative effect on our children. If we are not fully present or happy with ourselves our children see this, our children are our biggest audience. Our children have front row seats to our lives every day and are little sponges. They witness all. How many times have we laughed at the funny things our kids have said because they are listening to those around them, or watching their mannerisms mimicking your own?
But how do we cultivate our self esteem in such a busy life. How do we make time for ourselves when we are pulled in multiple directions? Start small. Make some goals. Book time for fitness! You may think that laying on the couch and smashing that row of Oreos will make you feel better however it actually has the opposite effect. Take that small time in the day to go for a walk, do some sit ups on the lounge room floor, find some local classes that fit in your schedule. Look at the options around you. You may be surprised what is out there. Take your children with you if you cannot find a sitter. Include your children in your healthy life. Encourage your children to help you cook a healthy dinner and then play in the backyard together or walk down to the beach.
Surprisingly you will start to feel better and your children will feel and see this. They will see a happier mother, a healthier mother and will start to watch a different narrative unfold in front of them. By thinking that a change in lifestyle is too hard and too big a challenge we already defeat ourselves before we try.
Take a chance on yourself. You’ll be surprised what you can achieve if you believe in yourself. Don’t be afraid to be a beginner. What have you got to lose?