Amongst my fellow Mumz I often hear the following statements:
-I feel so overwhelmed! I can’t seem to find time for myself!
-I have to remember everything; after-school activities, grocery shopping, laundry times and pretty much everything else that has to do with our home and our family. It takes brain-space, I just don’t think I have space for anything else!
-There is no time for anything except work and the kids! I have no idea how other women do it!
-I am so under-stimulated, conversations nowadays are all about which diaper size to buy, what cupcakes to make for the next school-bake sale and best practices to handle kids tantrums in the supermarket!
So, we have now established an important realization, one that I wish every Mum out there would embrace: You are not a failure! Other women are not waking up looking like supermodels, arriving to the office without a single vomit or baby-food spatter on their white designer skirt. Other women also stop in the middle of the road, shouting at their kids because they just cannot stand another word coming out of their mouths. We all do it! It’s just that many women have some kind of perfection-syndrome, whereby we constantly have to make other women think we are so on top of everything and enjoying every second of motherhood! We should stop that whole charade and just be honest, share our experiences and inspire each other to better ourselves.
And on the note of bettering ourselves, first step is to find out what you like and what inspires you. Once we have kids and a family, we tend to forget what we used to love doing. What did you enjoy as a child? Often those interests could be revived in your adult life. Here are a few suggestions to begin with, if you are out of ideas:
1) Creative: Need to switch off the world?
Learn how to paint with oil or acrylic on canvas. The beautiful thing about painting is that there is no right or wrong. You don’t have to be super-talented to be able to produce some pretty cool wall-art. Go abstract, allow your emotions to splash all over that white canvas (just make sure you cover walls and curtains :)). You can also learn how to make jewellery, get some beads, string and put on some Youtube tutorials on jewellery making and off you go! Creative activities are very liberating!
2) Thrills: What makes your blood pump?
Is there an adrenaline junkie hiding inside of you? Find ways to get a rush, in a safe way. Try indoor rock climbing or attend open mic nights to challenge yourself to sing or speak in front of a crowd. Anything that you consider a tad bit frightening (but not dangerous in any way please), do it!
3) Physical Activity: Not a gym-goer? Not a problem!
There are numerous ways you can incorporate physical activity in your day-to-day life, without setting your foot in a gym. Try activities that engage your spiritual being as well.
-Meditation: Find a quiet and serene place, perhaps in the forest, on the beach, in your backyard or in a room in your house that you can close, lock and barricade:) against little invaders
-Not your usual yoga: Loads of people have tried yoga, but have you tried any alternative yoga forms? Aerial Yoga, Bikram Yoga, Tantrum Yoga (lol, suitable!) and other more or less weird versions that you could try your luck with. In the end of the day, you will meet some people and definitely challenge yourself on the quest for what you truly enjoy doing.
-Dancing: Ok, not necessarily ballet (unless that’s your thing!), but there are loads of fun dance classes out there; Belly Dance, HipHop, Jazz or Tango, hell, give Pole Dancing a try! It will be fun, will allow you to connect with other women and a whole new world may unfold in front you.
4) Connect: Sharing is indeed caring!
Start a blog: Haha, yep, there you go, one of the reasons we decided to start blogging was because we realized we needed to share and connect with other Mumz. We felt there was a need for these kinds of blogs about Motherhood, real and open, without any fluff. But we also wanted to share practical tips on all things motherhood, so here we are:)
You can open a blog about anything you are interested in, make sure it’s something about YOU though, and not an extension of those dreaded conversations about diapers and best parenting practices that we are trying to escape:)
5) Give back: Do you feel there is a lack of purpose in your life?
You may think you have the best life ever, and maybe that is the problem:). You need to give back to society, see the happiness in people’s eyes when you give or share. If you are not into charity in its conventional forms, then you can also go about sharing knowledge. Whatever your skills or professional experience is, there is always someone who would like to learn it. Teach kids in non-profit schools or post YouTube videos online and let the world benefit from your knowledge. It’s very rewarding and will give you a sense of purpose which is not related to being a mother, but rather to being a person in general.
Inspiration is key. Find what inspires you and awakens your positive spirit, and then claim the time to explore it. Only YOU know, what YOU need to do for yourself. Make it happen!