Ten Ways to Handle Motherhood Less Stressed

Stress is draining and excruciatingly overwhelming at times. Add it into motherhood and it’s a double whammy. When I became a stay at home mom, we completely cut two incomes into one. That instantly put a complete cloud of stress over my head knowing that I’d have to rely on my husband for just about everything. Learning how to manage expenses while caring for a toddler and a newborn really put a lot on me. Let’s not overlook the stress of motherhood in general. Trying to be patient with two children at home can be tough. A short time ago in the morning while trying to get my son out the door for Pre-K, he was refusing to get ready and I lashed out.

“If you touch one more damn toy before you’re dressed

I’m going to throw them all in the garbage.”

The look on my sons face as he got up to put his clothes on broke my heart. I am a stern believer of disciplining your kids, but this time I felt in the wrong. I had to remember he’s only 4, and he’s simply playing with his toys. He isn’t doing no harm, he’s just being a kid. Having a mother scream at you the way I just did can’t possibly make any situation better. The whole ride to daycare I felt so sick, and fought back tears. I shouldn’t lash out like that to my children. I’m the one who molds them into the adults they will one day be. I don’t want any negativity to run through their minds.

After that day, I started to find ways to destress through my crazy world of motherhood. I get it, it’s hard to find time for yourself when you’re a mom, but I’ve learned a few simple tips to make stress diminish and motherhood run a little smoothly.

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  1. Give Yourself More Time. Fifteen extra minutes a day can work wonders. Although we don’t have to pull out of the driveway until 8:15, I tell myself and the kiddos that we need to be in the car and ready to go by 8. My son is a master at last minute kid excuses. ‘Wait I need to potty Mommy. Can I have something to drink. I need to get a toy to take in the car’. The list could go on forever, so those extra minutes are a life saver when trying to be on time. It also saves me from damaging my vocal chords.
  2. Let it Go. Attempting to have your kids look perfect in the morning is a disaster in the making. If my son wants to wear two different socks, go for it. If he wants to wear pants that are completely mismatched from his shirt, do your thing. Nobody is going to care if your child walks into daycare with a milk stain on his shirt from the ride over. They get it, we’re all raising these little humans. Simply, LET IT GO (in my best Queen Elsa voice). At the end of the day, it gives them character, right? 😉
  3. Have Fun. Leave the dishes in the sink for a night, order some take out, hold out on folding laundry. Go play a game with the kids or build a tower out of LEGO’s, play hide and seek, whatever! Just forget the household chores for the night and have family time. Enjoy yourself. The grow up quick, you don’t want to miss these times. Plus, the kids would probably have a blast knowing Mommy wants to play all night.
  4. Go to Sleep Earlier. As much as I enjoy my alone time when my kids go to bed, staying up super late makes me feel extra drained in the morning. Getting a solid night’s rest can make you feel refreshed in the morning. It can relax your mind to prepare you for the morning ahead. I usually get the kids to bed, take a hot bubble bath, and go right to bed.
  5. Take a Run/Walk. Something about the fresh air and sunlight brings out the best in me. Take the kids for a walk or if you need that ‘me’ time, go alone. Breaking a sweat is a great way for me to destress. It clears my mind and cleanses my brain of all the negativity. It’s a great way to stay in shape and lower stress levels.
  6. Write it Down. Start a journal if you’d like to be more personal and jot down your feelings. Write down what currently struggles you and think of ways to overcome it. Write down some goals, and some motivational tips. You could also do as I did, start a blog! Write about it, learn from others, share your experiences. You never know who you could help just by expressing your thoughts and vice versa.
  7. Ask for Help. Don’t be afraid to hand the kids to your husband/significant other and ask for some time. They are in this with you. Don’t feel obligated to handle everything on your own. It’s natural for us moms to figure everything out and get organized, don’t wait for someone to ask if you need help. They aren’t mind readers, they can’t tell if you’re stressed and overwhelmed. Simply ask and they most likely will oblige.
  8. Break the Rules. Sometimes schedules get broken. Sometimes the kids stay up later than usual so you can read them books. Sometimes they have an extra piece of candy, or we skip out on something just so we can snuggle on the couch all day. If we all accidentally wake up late one morning and we’re late for something, so be it, I’ll take being less stressed. If you’re the rule maker, you can be the rule breaker, just one of the many joys of being a mom.
  9. Find Ways to Save Money. I don’t know about ya’ll, but saving money makes me happy. I feel a sense of accomplishment when I save. I’ve saved so much money with coupons, online surveys, and money savings apps on my iPhone. I’ve gotten back or earned close to $500. The money gets sent to my PayPal account, and it’s there for whenever I need it. It may seem unbelievable when it comes to earning money while sitting on your couch, but I’ve done it and it’s helped out an abundant of times when I was in need of a little extra cash.
  10. Have That Glass of Wine. By have a glass, I don’t mean chug the whole bottle to drown your stress. Sip a glass while reading some chapters in a book, or while you’re in the bubble bath. It’s a little night cap before bed to wind you down.

That Mom Guilt and Anxiety

Good Morning Ya’ll!

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Now that I am a mother, I never realized how much anxiety I truly have. When I was younger and baby free, I never took my anxiety into consideration. Now looking back, I can tell I’ve suffered from it my whole life but motherhood took it to a whole new level. There should be true diagnosis of ‘Mom Anxiety’ because when it comes to my babies and trying to navigate their needs while keeping a clean home, the struggle and pressure can be immense. I even have anxiety for things that are years away from happening, seriously the struggle is real. I’m pretty sure my husband thinks I’m crazy. Maybe it’s just me, but I’m that mom who always thinks something will happen when I’m not there. It could be something positive or negative, it doesn’t matter. I see mothers who love to get away and love to have their me time with not a worry in the world…I wish. Maybe they hide it well because my worried face stands out like sore thumb and the mom guilt kicks in.

I’ve gotten better at handling my anxiety lately, since I know I have two tiny humans who rely on me, but it’s still there. Now with two kids, and trying to cater to both of their needs simultaneously while also trying to keep a clean, cheerful home leaves me often feeling deflated. The overwhelming feeling of anxiety builds up quick, when finding time to play with Kyle and Liliana, cleaning clothes, washing dishes, and getting dinner on the table piles up in my head. But bad days happen, and I often need to find what keeps me calm and collected so I can continue being the best mother and wife. When Liliana was younger, it was easier to please both children. I knew how to navigate her needs a little easier while having extra time to play with Kyle while she napped. Now that she is crawling and moving all over the place, it’s harder. Evenings are also difficult for me because my husband and I sleep upstairs in our bedroom, while the kids are downstairs on the main floor. The anxiety builds to the point where I have trouble sleeping at night because I know they are on the main floor. I always think ‘what if someone breaks in’ or ‘what if a fire starts’. I keep a monitor on my four-year-old son still, just so my anxiety can subside at night while we sleep.

The mom guilt is inevitable. You know that guilt when you put your child in front of the TV so you can drink coffee peacefully and fold laundry. Or when you take your children to their grandparents so you can have some free time with your husband, or even just to grocery shop alone. Just tonight, my husband and I are going to be three hours away to attend our good friends annual Christmas party, and the mom guilt of leaving Liliana with her grandparents has already set it and we haven’t even left yet.

I also can’t forget about the guilt of leaving the kids with Daddy so you can get your nails done or have your hair touched up. This is terrible to say as a mother, but what about me? What about some healing time for us mothers? I’ve come to realize that those moments of “me” time are what help navigate my needs to help me be the best mother and wife I can be. That hour and half that I’m away by myself doing something for me are what help me cope with the daily struggle of anxiety and mom guilt. It relaxes me, and gives me peace in my own mind. Along with my away time, I always try to give myself a nightly, baby free bubble bath with a glass of wine. Just to relax after a long day, and to prepare my mind for another anxiety filled day in the morning.

Yes, sometimes it is a little easier said than done though. The mom guilt always kicks back in full force. What if my kids are looking for me? What if Liliana won’t stop crying? What if they need mommy? But in all honesty, I believe us moms need that time although our kids constantly run through our mind. We go through a lot, more than some people can understand. Yes, our husbands work hard every single day, but us mothers do also. Whether we stay at home or work a full-time job. Motherhood is one of the toughest jobs out there. We are molding little minds into intelligent and hard-working adults. We are responsible for that. If that doesn’t give you some anxiety, I praise you then. I’ve come to realize that mom guilt and anxiety is normal. Every mother just copes with it differently. It could be yoga, meditation, a massage, or as simple as drinking a cup of coffee alone. Just make sure you get that time in, you deserve it.

What about you? Do you mothers go through the anxiety and guilt also? How do you cope?

Have a good Saturday! xo

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