With Mother’s Day coming this weekend, I want to give other mother’s the best piece of advice that I have: Celebrate You.
Yes, being a mother is wonderful and it a fundamental part of your identity, but to be your best, to thrive in your life, you need to celebrate the other aspects of who you are, not just motherhood.
Once we have children, it is all too easy for many of us to completely lose ourselves and our identity separate from being a mother. We think about our children all the time, talk about them all the time, put them first, and often this is at the expense of the other areas of our lives. Careers get put on hold. Marriages suffer. Women let themselves go. We lose touch with what it means to be a sexy, vibrant woman. These are the many truths of motherhood.
The mothers that I know who are the happiest are the ones that don’t just derive their identity from being a mother. They have careers they enjoy. They go on date nights with their husbands. They make time for fitness, friends, hobbies and other things beyond motherhood.
When my children were younger, I thought that I was being selfish if I made time for these other things. I felt that because I worked, I needed to always rush home to my kids. No time for workouts, friends, hobbies or any form of me time. I mistakenly thought that such things were selfish. I love my children more than anything, but leading my life for them, caused me to suffer. I felt like a doormat. I lost my sense of self. I slowly began to let myself go, and this caused me to lose my passions for life, and my desire to be my best. Feeling sexy and vibrant were concepts I thought were reserved for pre-motherhood only.
What I have learned though is that the best mother is a woman who loves herself and her children, and in that order.
It’s a woman who models what high self esteem, boundaries, self-care and continuous personal development look like. This is a woman who shows her children that while she loves them, it is ok for her to have a life away from them too. This is a woman that her children will respect and want to emulate, rather than a martyr who felt she had to constantly sacrifice for them.
If you are a single mother, like me, it is even more important that you do these things for yourself despite the greater challenges you have to manage as compared to married mothers. You must find time for yourself. Workout, date, find a career you enjoy, spend child-free time with friends. These things are imperative to do if you want to truly thrive, be happy, and be an excellent role model for your children.
So this Mother’s Day, celebrate YOU! Do something for yourself that makes you feel good and has nothing to do with being a mother. I am confident that you are good to your children, and meeting their needs. I am not so confident you are being good to yourself and meeting your own needs. If you would like some help on how to find time for yourself and identifying what you need to do in order to rediscover passion and be your best, I have developed an excellent coaching program to help. It has been personally tested by me, so I know firsthand that it works. If you would like to learn more about how coaching can help you, let’s chat.