It’s crazy for me to think about this but next week marks the four-year anniversary since I became a stay-at-home (and mostly work-from-home) momma. I’ve been in both places. Regardless of how long you’ve been among the ranks of the SAHM, whether you’re a mom in the trenches of the home or the office, it never hurts to up your game. Some things I’ve learned over the years:
- Dress for Success. You’ve probably heard that phrase and the similar one “dress for the job you want.” They are true. I have found this to be a key motivating factor. If I hang out in pajamas half the morning, it takes me that much longer to feel like I get anything accomplished. Putting on something fresh can give you a whole new outlook on life. Even if you just change into lounge clothes, it can make a big difference in mood. While you’re at it, throw in a couple of other things like brushing teeth and pulling up hair (because you are going to get down to business).
- Create a Safe Space. How frustrating is it to look into your bedroom and see chaos? Blankets askew, socks lying about, and kids’ toys that managed to sneak in, too. Pull up the covers, pick up the clutter and shut the door. Keep the kids out so you can have a small sanctuary to take a calming breath and maybe say a short prayer before heading back into real like with small kiddos underfoot.
- Feed Yourself. Yep, moms (and dads) you are going to need some energy to chase after those kids and do all that you do. I know it’s easy to make sure the kids have breakfast but put this high on the list for yourself and do it every day. Even if it’s a protein drink and a granola bar, give your body and mind some fuel.
- Open Your Heart. Frankly, I’m new to this but I can’t overstate the importance of truly connecting, regularly. Once I became a mom, I pretty much holed up in the house with my tiny people, which strained the close friendships I had. I’ve found it incredibly beneficial to connect with women who are of like mind, whom I can learn from and teach. In fact, studies have proven the benefits of connection. One researcher used these words: “Socially disconnected people are less happy, their health declines earlier in midlife, their brain functioning declines sooner, and they live shorter lives than people who are not lonely.”
- And my number 1 tip, Seek God. Read your bible, pray frequently, listen to and sing praises. When you keep your priorities in order and your focus off of you, the daily grind of life isn’t so daunting.
What I still need to work on:
- Scheduling. I have a tough time establishing and sticking to a schedule. I know I need an external motivator but haven’t done this.
- Maintaining friendships. Since becoming a mom, it’s been difficult to stay connected to my friends who don’t have kids. I need to be better about making it a point to contact and visit with them.
- Seeking God. I have times where I get caught up in putting out fires and in doing so I lose a crucial part of my perspective. It takes a toll on my emotions and my interactions.