As we fast approach September and back to school time,, you are probably looking over the past month with fond memories of the time you’ve been able to spend as a family.
By now, for some of you, the mere mention of children activities might be enough to bring you out in hives, after numerous wrestling matches over the remote control or the toy of the hour. Whichever side of the fence you sit, one thing is for sure. You ARE an amazing mum.
Let’s talk about something all mums at some point in their life experience; Mummy guilt.
No matter the parenting style, most of us will have had to wrestle with the feelings of guilt that can come along as a result of feeling that in some way we are under achieving as a parent. If we work away from home, we may feel guilty about not giving our children enough attention when we are with them.
As a work from home mum, you may feel the pressure of trying the get the balance right around running a successful business and spending enough quality time with your children.
Those of us that take care of the children and home as work may feel guilty for wanting time away from the children occasionally, thinking we should be grateful that we don’t have to go to work daily and as such are able to focus solely on being mum.
Even the most chilled of mums, can find themselves feeling awful about shouting at at their children over things that don’t matter. You can hear yourself ranting, and think to yourself “I don’t want to be this kind of mum”. At this point we have lost control and don’t understand why until we realise that the issue isn’t the children, the issue is that we are tires stressed and overwhelmed.
When we are taking care of ourselves it is so much easier to take care of others. Often as mums we feel the need to put our wants and desires on the back burner to cater for our families. The truth is, this method rarely works in the longer term as we get more and more stressed and rather than being the calm, loving, happy mum we want to be we can end up being short tempered, grumpy and feeling under pressure.
Guilt doesn’t ever really get us anywhere. In fact it can often make things worse. When we allow guilt to determine our behaviour we are more likely to give in to whining or complaining from our children. We may find it hard to stick to our guns and reverse our decisions - accidentally rewarding this behaviour, making it more likely to reoccur.
What we often fail to recognise is that the behaviour isn’t a reflection of us as a parent, its down to children not having developed self-control. When we operate from a place of guilt it can be hard to be objective about our parenting, which is why it is all the more important to take time out for ourselves on a regular basis to recharge and recenter, allowing us the patience to be the mum we want to be.
Try to do something, no matter how small, just for you on a daily basis. It isn’t selfish to take time out for yourself, its selfless. You deserve to be looked after in the same way you look after your family. You will probably find you feel more present, enjoy your time with the children more and feel more at ease.
Have you recently discovered the importance of self care in combating mummy guilt? How did it impact on your life?
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