I’m not a New Years Resolutions type of girl. If I want to change or improve an aspect of my life, I don’t feel compelled to wait until a specific date to do it. I pursue the goal and attempt to make progress as soon as possible. There is no better time than now, right? I have been evaluating my effectiveness as a mother over the course of the last few months as I am adjusting to life as a mom of three littles: What are my strengths? Where can I focus more energy? Where can I focus less energy? What aspects of motherhood can I improve upon? The answers to all of these questions could get extremlely lengthy, so here is my simplified summary:
My new goal is to do LESS as a mother to become MORE of a mother.
Yes. You are reading that correctly. I need to do LESS as a mother.
My generation of mothers are taught that we are the generation that CAN and SHOULD have it all. And I whole heartedly believe this. BUT, here is the catch: We can have it ALL, just not always at the same time.
It’s mind boggling to be a mother in 2017. It’s the era of Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Google and online shopping. I call it the era of accessability. Accessability is a beautiful thing, but it can also be overwheling, isolating, and wasteful when abused. I have a million pinterest crafts pinned to my ‘Crafts for Kids’ board. I have a play date scheduled most days of the week because my facebook feed is FILLED with my fellow mom friends out participating in kid centered, fun activities. My children’s schedules are jam packed with soccer, swimming, church activities and pre-school obigations. At the end of each day I ask myself this: Did I have time to BE a MOTHER? Or did I dedicate all of my precious time to being a cook, a chaueffer, a maid, a master coordinator of playdates, and personal shopper. These secondary hats I wear as a mother, are all esssential and necessary to my family, BUT should come secondary to actual MOTHERING.
In true mom 2017 style, my pursuit of procureing the perfect pinterest craft, the perfect playdates and the perfect schedule of extra curricular activities, actually back tracked me as a mother. Where was my time just to BE with my precious babies? There was no such time! I was too busy! What was my solution? Eliminate what isn’t a necessity and lets go back to simplicity. The last few weeks of me doing LESS, in order to become MORE has been extremely effective. Instead of me frantically rushing around like a crazed turkey to events, craft stores and practices, my children and I do MORE of the best and simple aspects of the parent/ child relationship: We read fun stories. We play dress up. We color more. We snuggle more. We have more lesiurly meal times. More piggy back rides and nerf gun fights. We have more child lead converstaions (what is on their little minds, what do they want to talk about).
I’ve seen behavioral improvements in not only my children (less talk back, less whining, better manners ect.) but in MYSELF since implementing my less is more policy. I’m less of an absent minded zombie mom, trying to figure out ‘what’s next’ on my former never ending agenda. I am more mentally and emotionally present for my spouse and my children. My patience is improving and I feel less physically, mentally and emotionally overwhemled by the demands and needs of my children. In my effort to do less, I have indeed become the MORE I was desperatly searching for over the last few months.
Of course the playdates will continue in our home, the extra curricular activities will still have a spot on our schedule, and I’m still going to be the cheuffer and orchestrator to all these events, but just in a more appropraite, less overwhelming time frame. Do I REALLY need four playdates a week? Or is two more managable? Do the children really need to be involved in five billion activities or can we narrow it down to just one or two hours of practice a week? There is wisdom that comes with time as a parent and my wisdom is whispering to me that now is the time to do less and that now is the time to savor the simple moments of having young children in my home. With confidence I can say I wont regret this newly discovered mindset and lifestyle.
What are your current goals as a mother or parent? How are you working to achieve these goals?