Feeling all sorts of overwhelmed and tired lately? As moms, the work never seems to stop no matter how many chores we tick off our to-do lists. We just can’t catch a break!
With all of these massive emotions coming from every direction, we’re sure you may have felt that you’re not cut out for this motherhood business a few times every once in a while. After all, a busy working mom’s entire situation can get a little topsy-turvy now and then. Are you wondering how to be kind to yourself when everything is telling you that you aren’t up to the task?
Moms, we’re here to tell you the truth: you’re not failing anyone. Not your kids, not your family, and especially not yourself. There are so many reasons to be kinder to yourself than there are reasons to be disappointed or upset.
Take some time to stop shouldering every single negative thought that crosses your mind. This will only exhaust you and bring you down. Show some kindness to yourself, mama!
Here are some ways to be kind to yourself today.
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Why is being kind to yourself important?
As moms we often find it easy to encourage our children and to teach them how to speak kindly to themselves when they run into difficulties. But when it comes to extending the same grace to ourselves, we often do not give ourselves the same space to be vulnerable and encouraging.
We tell them one thing, and then show them the example of the opposite. Then we wonder why they do not give themselves the same level of kindness.
We have to be the example to our babies. We have to be kind to ourselves so that they can see what that self-kindness looks like.
How to be kind to yourself
We have to be the ones to take the first step in being easy on ourselves so that our children can do the same for themselves! Here are 6 simple ways that you can give yourself grace and be kind to yourself.
Drop Everything & Slow Down
When you’ve got a long list of things to do, you’ll often find yourself rushing to tick off every little thing until you’ve done them all. This rush leads to a lot of stress that will only overwhelm you to the point of breaking down. Moms, you need to understand that this is counterproductive behavior. You will end up making mistakes at home or at work. All of this will result in mommy burnout.
Before this happens, slow down and practice mindfulness. Take a moment to breathe deeply and be intentional about everything you think and do. Release this overwhelming feeling of wanting to do everything all at once.
Go the extra mile and just yield to life’s enjoyments and conveniences. Opt for stress-free grocery delivery, order a healthy takeout meal, do some yoga, schedule a massage, or spoil yourself with a sweet treat.
Trust us, afterward, you’ll feel more energized than ever!
Accept Every Compliment Graciously
Mamas, tell us honestly: when was the last time you accepted a compliment without a qualifier? If someone tells you you’re beautiful, you have to stop answering with “Oh, really? I’ve been feeling like a slob lately.”
It can be hard but trust the person telling you these compliments but they only have good intentions. Know that they are being authentic and they’re saying this from their heart.
A simple “thank you” is more than enough. Then, spread this simple act of kindness, admiration, and love everywhere you go.
Make Time For The Things You Love
While motherhood is a huge part of you, that doesn’t mean you have to put a stop to everything you love. Becoming a mom shouldn’t prevent you from being you. Find a few minutes in your busy schedule to do something that you enjoy. Even if it’s just five minutes, it will make a whole world of difference.
Sing your heart out, read something other than parenting books, write that book you’ve been mulling over for the past few years, sit in silence, play with makeup, dress yourself up.
Doing what you love won’t just make you feel better, but it will also help shift your attention away from any of those lingering negative thoughts and feelings.
Meet With Friends, Old & New
There’s nothing more healing than talking and laughing with people that get you. You’ll find great company with your mom friends, as they’ll be able to relate to what you are experiencing with the kids.
Plan a little picnic, run errands together, or get together for lunch and a playdate. Sometimes, all you need is to disconnect from the internet, reconnect with friends, and create brand new memories.
Celebrate Every Small Success
Even if it’s just as small as helping the kids with their homework or taking the first step towards creating a positive habit, celebrate everything. Remember that the little things are important, too, because they will push you to greater and greater accomplishments.
This is called momentum, and once you create it, you will be unstoppable. Keep working towards a better version of yourself every single day, mama!
As humans with very complicated thoughts, feelings, and emotions, beating ourselves up for all our mistakes is inevitable. Whenever you feel as if you’re not doing enough as a parent or that every decision you’re making is wrong, that’s the mom guilt talking.
This is normal. You’ll find that a lot of things will make you feel guilty. However, parenting is hard, and some days are just harder than others. We’ll lose our patience, we’ll get angry, we’ll get annoyed—but all of these things are okay. These are only bad moments. They don’t make you a bad mom.
Breathe deeply and just try again. You’re allowed to do so.
Pass On The Kindness
Mamas, there is absolutely nothing selfish about being a little more compassionate to yourself. Kindness is good. Kindness is infectious.
Be kind to yourself every chance you get, because your kids will see you. By showing them how compassionate and forgiving you are to yourself, they can learn to be kind to themselves as well. And wouldn’t it be great to raise a generation of people who practice self-compassion?
Katie Pierce is a teacher-slash-writer who loves telling stories to an audience, whether it’s bored adults in front of a computer screen or a bunch of hyperactive 4-year-olds. Writing keeps her sane (most of the time) and allows her to enjoy some quiet time in the evening before she walks into a room of screaming kids (all of whom she loves dearly) the next morning.