Lazy Mom's blog

Self-help and mindfulness

Embrace the mess

you're not doing it wrong if you feel like your life is a mess, life with kids is messy, and it's fine, here's why.

Motherhood is full of the mess. It’s learning that things don’t go as planned. It’s realizing that the only control in life we have is over our own reactions, and nothing else. It’s realizing that we can’t control our kids or force them to do anything they really don’t want to do. It’s learning to let go. It’s learning what’s really important and what we can live without.

Motherhood is mess. Real life toy mess. Kitchen and laundry mess. Mom hair mess. Dirty diaper mess.

Motherhood is emotional mess. The postpartum tears. The babyhood exhaustion of a mom who haven’t sleep in months. The toddler-hod confusion of a mom facing first tantrums and meltdowns. The mom of a bigger kid realization that there is always something to learn and that it never get’s really easy. That they change, and we can’t tell in which direction it’ll all go.

It’s the mess of our own reactions. Realization where are our patience limits are. Learning to embrace the unplanned.

Motherhood is a mess in relationships. It’s the sadness over loosing contact with friends that are childless and that we see way too rarely.. It’s the relationship with friends who have kids and with whom we can never finish a sentence during a play date. It’s a mess in friendships, that while so so very important, just have to fall after motherhood.

Motherhood is a mess in a couple. The tired days and exhausted evenings. The conversations unfinished, the I know-you-feel-it too-look. All the feelings shared, though not over a romantic weekly date but over a messy kitchen table with whiny kids around.

All that mess. We can’t run from it. And let’s not believe in lies that if only we’ll clean enough, try harder, parent better, self care more, date and just really try, that then all that mess mess will be gone.

embrace the mess

It wont. This is the time of our lives. The time of mess. Let’s embrace it. Lets smile at it. Lets giggle and accept.

This is the time when our emotions are the heaviest but also the fullest.

This is the time when we love our babies and they love us to the moon and back.

This is the time when we need our fiends like never before.

This is the time when we need out couples to stay strong. In that mess, not without it.

Lets just embrace it. The blurry photos where nobody looks at the camera. The never-really-clean-home. The unfinished conversations. The-I know-you-know-look. The tears and loughs.

And remember, if you feel your life is a mess, don’t ever start thinking that you’re doing it wrong!

Through the  mess of early spring mud, the plants and flowers grow, through the mess of everyday life with kids, you’re growing as a mother and they learn to be happy in the present real life!.

There may be simple solutions for keeping a house clean, and meal plan on point, lunches prepared, and laundry all done, kids calm and obeying and self care, couple connection and social life on point. But the reality is that, while it can be done, it can’t be done all at once. And it’s fine.

Kids don’t need to live in a perfectly set life with a perfectly organized mother. They need to see you happy, and they’ll learn what happiness is.

Kids don’t need a perfect surrounding to thrive. They need love and attention. And a happy mom. So don’t beat yourself up for being a mess. Just embrace it. 

Let go of the parenting guilt

let go of the parenting guilt: free worksheets to help you understand, let go and forgive yourself!

“Guilt is to the spirit, what pain is to the body” – Elder David A. Bednar

Parenting guilt is not a helpful feeling, it makes us feel physically heavy and it clouds our thinking. And in reality it doesn’t really shape us to be the better version of ourselves!

So why do so many of us struggle with it daily?

The reasons may vary from one person to another, but for sure the society standards of a perfect parent (especially a perfect mother) are a part of it. Then there are our own personal standards. Some mothers feel not good enough when they don’t play with their kids daily, and others feel guilty when they go to work. Some when they raise their voice and get impatient, or when they don’t cook healthy meals everyday. There’s probably as many reasons as parents, but they all make us feel not good enough and guilty.

I wrote about parenting guilt here, where I shared more about how I live with this feeling and how I try to deal with it.

And today I have a tool to help you let go of it! These free printable worksheets are designed for all moms who struggle with this feeling of guilt, and who wish to finally let go of it and move forward!

get rid of parenting guilt

let go of the parenting guilt: free worksheets to help you understand, let go and forgive yourself!

let go of the parenting guilt: free worksheets to help you understand, let go and forgive yourself!

You can get the “Let go of the parenting guilt” worksheets here! Just download the file and print at home. Find a calm spot  as much as I know it’s difficult to do around kids!), get yourself a mug of a hot coffee or a glass of vine, and fill them out with your first thoughts and ideas.

These worksheets are designed for your use only, but if you feel that your friend might need a little help, print one set for her too!

And you can read more about guilt and it’s effect on our body and mind here here

Are you worried, stressed or anxious?

If recently you haven't been feeling well, and you feel like there's jut too much problems around, you miht be stressed, simply worried or anxious. Here are some simple ways to tell which one is it, and how to cope. #selfhelp

We all know that being a parent is a very stressful job. We worry about these little humans from the very minute thy are born, sometimes even before they are born. There’s so may occasions to stress about: the feeding, the sleep or the lack of it, their development and safety. And so no wonder that motherhood and anxiety may go hand in hand.

But how much worry and stress in actually normal? Do all moms stress constantly? Are every-day fears really a part of mothering?

I think that a lot of moms do worry daily, but some of us live it more intensively. It’s still normal, as it’s a part of a human experience, but when it’s getting to the level of anxiety it’s not necessary healthy.

Because while worry is usually a temporary, mild form of stress, caused by realistic concerns, and quite easy to verbalize, and stress is a constant worry and a response to real danger. Anxiety is a more general state, often without a real danger involved, just a perception of something as dangerous, and it causes more suffering and is much more difficult to overcome. 

So recently I was asking myself, if my fears and worries are normal. (I was telling myself sure they are, since I’m a human, a mom, so fearing for safety of my kids is normal!) I worry about my kids having too much screen time, and I worry about them not getting enough exercise. These are my parenting worries.

But I’m also obsessing over car accidents. And I know that when our fears prevent us from normal functioning, this is when these re not just every day parenting fears. This is anxiety, and that’s becoming problematic. So since I’m scared of flying, driving on a highway and heights, these are points for me to work on. I still get myself in to these situations, but it takes a lot of my energy to do so. And these fears are closer to anxiety then worry, since there’s no real danger, it’s just my perception of it.

But since kids imitate all that they see, won’t they imitate my fears? How can I make sure not to pass my fears on to them? While am not diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, and while what I live might not be enough to put a label on it, I may  influence my kids perception of what’s risky and whats not. And I do wish them a life full of exploration, travel and marvel! And I want to feel better too!

So I was asking myself, how do I not let my kids get influenced by it? And how do I overcome it? How to navigate between motherhood and worry, stress and anxiety? Denial of the situation, or over-controlling every aspect of life, are common dealing mechanism with anxiety, but not very healthy ones.

So here’s what I try to do instead, and if you feel that you’re in the same boat, here’s what might help you too, whether you’re worried, stressed or anxious :

1. Admit your fears. Talk about them.

Sometimes the simple act of talking things over, verbalizing our fears and worries and being  listened without judgment is the best cure to mild stress and worry! So find that someone who can listen, and just talk things through. Usually by talking about our worries, we can find our own solutions, realize what is it that we really want, and realize how to deal with them.

Name your worries, even if they may be absurd. Try talking about how you feel when you think about your worries, and what would have to change so you could feel better. Ask yourself how things can change, and if the changes are realistic.

Although if talking about it does not help at all, then it may be a signal that what you live is closer to anxiety.

2. Slow down.

It may sound like a cliché, but if your everyday life is starting to be too stressful, it means it’s time for a change. You may need either a change of routine, either a change of expectations, because feeling stressed and anxious is an important signal from your body that something isn’t right, and that it needs to be fixed.

We tend to have high expectations of how our life should be like, how our work life, or SAHM life should look like. But remember, even though it’s possible to do it all,  it’s impossible to do it all at once! Having a  thriving carer and young kids, and a spotless home and a fulfilled personal life, and a perfect body, all at once, is more of a holly grail then an achievable plan. There are seasons in life, and they all come with different challenges. It’s ok to fail and it’s ok to do good enough, and not perfect. Because perfection is an illusion, it’s impossible, and it doesn’t exist!

3. Get more sleep.

It may sound like an even bigger cliché but lack of sleep correlates with depression and anxiety. And while I realize that for many parents sleep is more of a wish then the reality, sometimes it’s simply jeopardized by Netflix and social media. So put that phone aside, and got to sleep earlier!

Because in the end, in order to function properly our bodies need good fuel ( whole food, yes.) and sleep. It’s simple as that.

4. Don’t believe that through controlling all the details of life you’ll gain control over your fears. It’s the other way a round.

The more we fear certain situations and horrid scenarios the more these fears control us. And we might very well control every detail of our kids life, but they still might have an accident. Letting things go, and letting to lose control might be more liberating from fears then tying to control it all.

5. Seek professional help

If talking about worries, changing routine and expectations, and getting more sleep doesn’t help, then most likely what you live isn’t just simple worry, but anxiety.

And if on top of it, you or your family start seeing that your normal activities are being changed, because of your fears, it’s time for a consultation with a specialist. I know it’s difficult to admit, but sometimes we do need help. And while we all live though stressful situations, and while being a parent is full of worries and stress, once it becomes overwhelming and to big to control, it means that it’s time to consult and get real treatment!

So now I’m working on adjusting my routine (and expectations) , sleeping more, and verbalizing my worries more often. And for now it helped me a lot. And I hope that you too, after figuring out if you’re worried, stressed or anxious, can feel better with these simple changes!

How to find your self-care routine-tips for busy moms

I used to have a pretty good self-care routine. That is, before I had kids. I would take care of my body, and my mind, read tons of books, educate myself on cultural novelties, see friends regularly and even use a day cream, a night cream and an eye cream: daily!

As a busy mom you're always putting yourself last, but let's face it, you can't pour from an empty cup! Here are 7 great tips to help you find your self-care routine that works! #momlife #selfcare #motherhood

And here I am now. I know you’ve been there too: tired, without makeup for days, drinking cold coffee and feeling down. There’s always something to do, right? Lunches to prepare, babies to change, dishes to be done, laundry to fold and this last-minute family visit to prepare to. So forgetting about medical appointments, not seeing friends for months, not getting a real haircut and putting my self-care on hold is the norm, right?

That’s what I thought. But I can’t pour from an empty cup, and nor can you! It’s important to take some time for yourself, if only 10 minutes a day.

Because kids of happy moms are happier, kids of moms who take care of themselves will know how to take care of themselves in the future, and kids of moms who set their boundaries will know how to set ones for themselves too.

So it’s about time to find your self-care routine! To drink that coffee while it’s still warm, to let your hubby put the kids to sleep, and to go meet that friend that you were supposed to call two months ago!

It’s ok to take the time for yourself. And here are seven steps to help you with that:

1. Plan your day.

You don’t need a fancy calendar to start being intentional with your plans. Plan your whole day down on paper, including kids naps, meals, play time and your little break. Actually, while planning your day, make sure that you find time for yourself in it!

Tips for finding your self-care routine

2. Define your needs.
What is it that you used to do for yourself that you think you don’t have time for anymore? Well, find time. If only once a month, it’s still better then nothing!

3. Write down your dreams, and start calling them plans.

The only difference between a dream and a goal is a plan. So write down what is that you really want and what are the steps to achieve that. Then look at those steps, and divide them in to even smaller ones. And then add them to your day plan. By making what you really want happen, you’re taking care of yourself the way that nobody else can!

4. Keep your body fuelled.
I know you remember about your kids healthy snaks, but how about yours? Make yourself a real breakfast, snack on these cut in pieces fruits with your kids, and don’t skip meals! You’ll feel better, I promise.

Self-care routine

5. Mark the day in the calendar for some extra me-time.

Find a baby sitter, a family member or a friend and take some time off to do what you like doing, without kids!

6. Teach your kids to wait.

I know, as a mom of two, that kids are not very patient creatures. But give them a couple of days, and they’ll learn that mommy’s coffee break is not to be disturbed.

Self-care routine

7. Ask your hubby to help you with one task a day, and use that time for yourself and not for extra cleaning!.

It doesn’t have to be a big change, but if you don’t have the time to take a shower, or put makeup on, then it means you need help. And wasn’t it supposed to be in sickness and in health type of the deal? Well, consider it a good timing to test this one!

I know it’s complicated to find some time for yourself and to plan your self-care routine. I know that it’s not easy to start focusing on your needs while living in the constant movement of a family life. But for the sake of your kids, and your sanity, it’s worth trying!

How to deal with the mommy guilt

Even if you try your best, some days you just don't have the energy to play, somedays  you raise your voice and yell, and then you feel guilty about it. How to deal with the mommy guilt, great tips for moms! #parentingtips #motherhood

Even if you try your best, some days are just tough, and then the mommy guilt takes over. I know you’ve been there. The days of love and laughter and cuddles. And kids misbehaving and the overwhelming feeling of almost loosing it. The days where frustration is mixed with happiness, where pride is mixed with boredom. The days when you might yell at your kids just because you’re tired. And I think that you must be a mother to understand how is it even possible that all of these contradictory emotions can actually exist together. Sometimes at the same time. And how it’s still beautiful even if it isn’t perfect. And yet, you might still feel the mommy guilt.

But life isn’t perfect. There are ups and downs to almost any situation, and parenting is one of them. It’s ok to love your kids and be happy simply by looking at them. And it’s ok to hate their screaming tantrums and their whining moments. To smile at your baby, but to shred at a thought of another night nursing session. It’s fine to miss your kids while they’re in kindergarten, but to be tired and unmotivated while around them. We don’t have to always be motivated and exited about parenting. We don’t have to be always full of energy to play with our kids. It’s ok not to feel the willingness. Nothing and nobody is perfect, and mothers don’t need to be perfect either.

Kids need us to respond to their needs, to love them and cuddle, to nurture, inspire and motivate most of the time. But we don’t have to be always the best parents that a world have seen. We can respond to most (and not all) of their needs and still be very good parents!

The world for which we prepare them, the real-life world, isn’t always waiting with the arms wide opened. In real life, we live through deception, reject and failure. Nobody is always smiling at us and saying “good job!” all the time. And we’re raising our kids to live, prosper and be happy in that real, tough world, not in a fairy tale.

So it’s really fine if sometimes we don’t meet all of their needs. If from time to time we’ll say: not now honey. Go play alone. No, I won’t read to you now. No, I won’t go to park with you, nor cook a healthy, organic and finally cut in cute little shapes meal. It’s ok to serve a frozen pizza, and to let your kids watch Dora. It’s ok to skip bath. And not feel guilty about it.

Of course, I think that we should try our best, because we are raising humans who’ll shape the future of our society. But I don’t believe in perfection.

So here’s what you can do next time you feel the mom guilt overwhelming you:

1. Remind yourself all of the good things that you do for your kids.
You feed them, you cuddle them you love them. That’s good enough.

2. Repeat: good enough not perfect.
Because the world isn’t perfect, and you’re preparing them to live in the real world.

3. Breathe deeply and think about what are you grateful for.
Both can really help you with calming. And concentrating on the things that we are grateful for diminishes stress.

4. Think about your kids perspective.
They don’t know what’s your perfect ideal. They love you because you’re their parent, and whatever you’ll do, they’ll still love you. Even when you’ll raise your voice, they’ll forgive you. All they need is your smile and a hug.

5. Give yourself the right to make mistakes.
Everyone makes mistakes. We’re human. So instead of living the guilt, try to shred it off, and think that tomorrow is a new day.

6. Assume that not everyday needs to be perfect.
Somedays you’ll be an amazing mom, and somedays a good-enough mom. And that’s fine.

I think that a lot of times the feeling mom-guilt comes from our unrealistic expectations. So if we could only treat ourselves with more kindness and gentleness, then I believe it would be best for both us, and our kids!

Organize your emotional life

Forget about the drawers, closets and hallways. There's something that's much more important, and it's your emotional life. If you feel unhappy in your routine, drained emotionally by people around you, and lost in your life, then it's time to rethink and reevaluate, it's time to organize your emotional life. <strong>Of course, it's not as easy as making space in the drawers. But if you'll only take some time to answer yourself these questions, you just might start the new year with a fresh regard, a new attitude, and reorganized emotional life! </strong> So grub a cup of coffee, a notepad and a pen, and let's start a little self-help session!

Forget about the drawers, closets and hallways. There’s something that’s much more important, and it’s your emotional life. If you feel unhappy in your routine, drained emotionally by people around you, and lost in your life, then it’s time to rethink and reevaluate, it’s time to organize your emotional life.

Of course, it’s not as easy as making space in the drawers. But if you’ll only take some time to answer yourself these questions, you just might start the new year with a fresh regard, a new attitude, and reorganized emotional life!

So grub a cup of coffee, a notepad and a pen, and let’s start a little self-help session, she’ll we? Just be honest with yourself, and always write down the very first thing that comes to your mind:

1. What relations are draining you out ?

If none, then good for you! If there’s one or two, write down when, and how these people are draining out your energy. Ask yourself if you’ve set clear boundaries in the past. If not, now is the time. Here is a good article about setting boundaries.

And if you feel that in your entourage there are more than two people who’re eating all of your energy and are draining you out, then it’s a clear signal that you might have a problem with setting boundaries in general. Maybe a session or two with a therapist would help you with that.


2. What relations add energy and joy to your life ?

Write down who’s your joy, motivation and support. Now find a way to spend more time with these people! Happiness comes from fulfilling relations, so start your year with extra happiness by making more time for those people who really make you happy!

3. When and with who do you feel negative emotions most often?

Are these the same people who drain your energy? If yes, maybe it’s time to cut them off your life.

Are these the same people who equally make you happy? If so, maybe it’s something about your communication, or your expectations?

Try writing down within the next week, when do you feel negative emotions about the people who are also making you happy. Usually it’s close family, people who we love, who can make as the happiest, but also the most frustrated.

After you write down for a week when and in which type of situation you get frustrated with the people that you love, you should start seeing a pattern. So, do your negative emotions appear when you’re stressed and tired? Could you need more time for yourself?

Do you feel like you’re not well understood? Like they don’t understand, or listen to what you’re saying,or like they don’t understand what you need? Try upgrading your communication skills, here is a good article to get you started.

Is it about people not meeting your expectations? Here are very well written tips about setting realistic expectations in a relationship , and here about setting up expectations with children.

3. How your routine makes you feel ?

Do you wake up in the morning exited about your day, mildly content, frustrated or all together unhappy?

Which part of your day do you love, and which one you hate?

What can you change?

Is it possible that your attitude toward your everyday life affects your relations with family and friends?

If you feel stuck in your everyday life, try answering all of these questions. Then think about what little changes you can insert, so you’d feel happier in your routine.

4. What really makes you happy?

I’m not talking satisfied, mildly content. And I don’t mean that feeling of achievement nor making someone else happy. What action really makes you feel happy? When do you forget the time, and you feel like you were made to do that very thing?

Did you find it? Whatever it is (of course as long if it’s not destructive for you or others) do it more.

And if you didn’t find it, now it’s the time. After all, all we really have is today.

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