I'm a burned-out mom. I feel like I've bitten off more than I can chew. I'm in survival mode. Instead of being a fun, Pinterest-doing mom, I'm doing all I can to make it through each day. You may have been here before or are here right now. While I've felt guilty about feeling this way in the past, I've discovered six actions that are helping me become unstoppable, relentless and motivated.
1. Say no
You don't have to do it all. Just say no. Prioritize the tasks that are most important, then politely decline the rest. You don't have to go to every playdate. You don't have to visit every museum or go to every library story time. Prioritize the things that matter most to you and that you actually need to do. Then say no to the rest.
2. Take some time off
This is easier said than done, but one of my favorite things to do (and one of the best ways to rejuvenate my love for motherhood) is to regularly go on a vacation without the kids. For example, my husband and I went on a four-day cruise, left my children with my parents and just spent four days relaxing. I came back rejuvenated and actually missed my kids a little bit. If you can't get away for a few days, then spend an afternoon by yourself. Hire a babysitter or let your husband take charge, and just go do something you want to do.
3. Have a "yes" day
Some of the hardest parenting days are those when you are constantly telling your child no. Usually this follows with excessive whining and tons of tears, which quickly zaps your energy and motivation. For one day, choose to only say yes to your child (within reason of course). Let them have ice cream before dinner. Let them go to the park and the zoo. Spend a day saying yes more than you say no.
4. Get enough sleep
Sleep deprivation seems mandatory if you are a parent. The nights seem so long, yet you rarely get enough rest. Sleep not only makes you grumpy and cranky, but you also have a harder time staying focused, you lack motivation to get things done around the house and you just want to stay in your sweatpants. Don't let this happen to you. If you want to be unstoppable, ask your husband, family members, neighbors or a babysitter for help. Ask your husband to handle the kids during the night so you can catch up on sleep. Over the weekend, ask him to spend time with the kids while you take an afternoon nap. Seeking help can make a huge difference.
5. Keep detailed lists
I live by my day planner. My day planner contains everything going on in my life - deadlines, due dates, community events, etc. It also includes to-do lists, lists of projects I need to complete around the house, shopping lists and gift ideas for upcoming birthdays and holidays. By writing things down right away, I'm better able to manage my household and my family. It takes just a few seconds to write an item down and can help me stay organized, prepared and just better managed.
Disciplining children is definitely not a favorite thing to do as a parent, but it is a must. When you avoid it - or don't do it well - your children run all over you. They become spoiled, out of control and combative. When you are diligent and strict with your disciplining, your children understand where their boundaries lie. They are more likely to obey the rules. It may not be a fun job, but it can mean less issues later in life.
You don't need to feel worn down and beat up. You shouldn't feel like all your energy and your hard work is gone. You can come off conqueror. You can be unstoppable.