I was originally going to call this article “How to feel great as a new mom, but realized any mom should feel great and the challenges don’t stop when your baby reaches age 1. If you think you are too busy to think about yourself, you need to revisit your role and what is the cost of not making yourself a priority. I don’t know about you but in my house I’m a pretty important person. What I do on a regular basis, the food I prepare, the things I say, the way I feel affect my family directly. If you feel great, you can manage all that you have to to do much more efficiently and that includes your relationship with your children and spouse. Here are 7 ways to start feeling pretty awesome!
1. Make it a priority. Realize the importance of feeling great as a mom and what are the costs and risks of not feeling top notch. Go ahead make a list of the pros and cons of not making yourself a priority.
2. You are what you eat. Yes you too mom, need to watch what you eat. I’m sure you got advice from your doctor and/or books, friends, online research on what and how to feed your child. Have you spent the same effort on yourself? If you don’t eat in a way that you would like your child to eat, how will that be sustainable in the long term? In most cases, regardless of the wonderful homemade purees you made for your baby, he will grow up to eat a diet much like his parents. So your diet is a reflection of what your children’s diet will become. Not only that, as a mom you have a lot on your plate (no pun intended) so you need to fuel your body to have energy, health and a clear mind to manage all that you do on a regular basis.
3. Make exercise a priority. Exercise produces feel good chemicals in your body and this will definitely affect your mood and patience. It will also increase your energy levels and overall health. I think we all know the benefits of exercise but do not underestimate their importance. Make sure your exercise program also includes strength training which will help you maintain muscle mass, burn more calories and protect you from injuries. This is our newest exercise video, I liked it so much we’re carrying it on our website. It’s only 30 min, challenging enough and includes your baby.
4. Do not multi-task all the time. I know moms pride themselves on being able to manage multiple things at once, but you run the risk of not savouring important moments. It can also reduce the quality of certain tasks. Some things demand your full attention, playtime with your kids is definitely one of those.
5. Create a network of family and friends. Make sure to have relationships with people that are over the age of 5. Join playgroups, invite family and friends for coffee or tea and ask them for help if you need it.
6. Increase your knowledge. Yes, being a mom requires skills. Don’t be afraid to take classes, get books at the library, ask for advice. You won’t have the answers and solutions to everything but equip yourself with as much information as you can. It will make your more confident in the choices you make for your family.
7. Change up your routine. Don’t do the same thing everyday, change it up a bit. Forget the dishes and take your kids to the museum instead, spend an entire afternoon at the park, whatever it is don’t lock yourself into a specific situation where you feel you are not “allowed” to do certain things. Rituals are great and they produce great childhood memories but so do the little spontaneous activities.
You are doing a great job so celebrate by enjoying the small things. I once saw a little girl who was learning to count. She would go “1,2,3, 4, 5,6, 7 yayyyy!!!” she was already clappig and saying yay! at 7 instead of the usual 10. I right away told her “you’re right! why wait for number 10, let’s celebrate 7!” Don’t wait for the usual reasons to celebrate, there are plenty of opportunities everyday.