Taking Care Of Yourself As A Working Mom
“Some days I don’t know who I am anymore,” I said to my husband one day with tears streaming down my face. I was overwhelmed and exhausted from trying to keep up with my two little ones (a two year-old and an almost 9 month-old), marriage, career and life in general, and in this juggling act I forgot one very important person – Me.
It is so easy to get sucked in to wife-ing and mom-ing and career-ing and every other –ing that we neglect ourselves. As women, we are expected to give and nurture and raise and care for, and run a business and be in shape and eat healthy and be a badass all at the same time. These expectations, whether self-imposed or thrusted on us, can become a heavy burden to bear if we do not take charge. The truth is, no one is going to prioritize you for you.
Motherhood is a major life change that requires a lot of your time, attention, energy, emotions and dedication. However, it is also the best job you will ever have as it has great benefits. So how do you find and care for the YOU in MAMA? You can start small with following five tips:
1. Take five
When we do not prioritize the little things that connect us to ourselves, the big things follow. Every day, take at least five minutes (more if time allows) to do something for you. Listen to a favorite song, dance, organize the apps on your phone (if that makes you happy), read, take a walk, drink tea/coffee – whatever it is, no matter how small, do it.
2. Feel all the feels
We are sometimes discouraged from allowing ourselves to feel what we feel, especially when the feelings are deemed negative. There is no point talking yourself out of how you feel. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you feel, and then talk to someone (a trusted friend, your spouse or a therapist) about what to do.
3. Get perspective
No matter what phase you’re in at the moment, remember that it’s not permanent. Some circumstances are just growing pains that you must go through, but they’re teaching you something and developing your character. “This, too, shall pass.”
4. Flock with different birds
Mommy groups are wonderful for support and encouragement, but don’t limit your circle of influence. Join groups/make friends with people who are engaged in things that interest you outside of mom, wife, career/business owner interests.
5. Share the load
It’s about you, but it doesn’t always have to be all about YOU – if you have a partner, it’s OK to share the load and allow them to be as involved as possible with parenting. And, keep each other accountable about the personal goals you’ve set for yourselves.
Now here’s the fine print – all these things are easier said than done, so don’t rush yourself or you’ll get frustrated quickly. Remember, you have to start small. Know and believe that you do have everything you need within you to get where you need to be. YOU are important, and YOUR dreams and aspirations are unique to you and will manifest at the right time.
Busola Saka is a writer and communicator. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two children.
What she's most passionate about: Daily self-awareness and improvement.
Her Clever Girl Super Power: Home Organizing.
Keep up with her: Instagram.com/heymama.hey