I am writing this article with Peppa Pig in the background next to a very happy toddler who is having a good amount of carrot sticks and juice to keep him busy for the next 20 min. I was thinking about the past two years which I spent at home and wanted to share a few things that kept me away from getting depressed, fed up or bored with being a housewife, and a full-time mom.
The following things are the result of my short experience with a two year, and I hope they will come in handy. Whether you are already a stay at home mom or considering becoming one this article is for you.
Be clear about your priorities
Without a precise purpose is easy to get distracted wander and get drifted and achieve very little. Once you are sure about what you desire for you and your family you can organize future activities and all your energy around it.
Everything that you do should be an expression of that purpose. Decide what you want to accomplish and work towards it.
If your purpose is to be home for your family, provide them with nutritional meals and a clean home, put love and care into it then make this your aim.
There will be days when you will happily do it and days when you are fed up of this routine and find no purpose. In this case, the following suggestion should help.
So now that you decided to be a stay at home mom start to see all the benefits that this will bring to you and your family.
Maybe for you would mean raising your child without paying a stranger to do a job that you love, or finally managing to do all the housework that you didn’t have time to do while you were in a full-time job, or finally getting the time to cook dinners from scratch and save some money.
Whatever it is for you, put yourself in a state of gratitude. Gratitude is a powerful mindset and attracts more of what you want. Practice being thankful and open your eyes to the blessings that you receive daily.
On good days, I like to list all the things that I am thankful for. When a day gets hectic, and I start to doubt my decisions, I have a look at my list and immediately brings things back into perspective.
Make goals for yourself as a stay at home mom, as a housewife as well as personal goals. Set weekly, monthly and even yearly goals to keep you on track. This will give you a sense of accomplishment as you tick those boxes away.
Write things like “taking care of my home is a way to show love and respect and I do it with love and attention.” Whatever you might struggle with, maybe you hate doing dishes or folding laundry make mantras give meaning to the job and convert it into something pleasant.
Don’t see this everyday thing as a burden, but do your best in every little task that you do. This small change will bring you motivation and satisfaction.
Believe in yourself, develop this attitude and create the life of your dreams, take charge of your beliefs and make it happen. If your vision is to be at home with your kids, to be the first one who sees the first steps or hear their first word then work towards it. There will be days when all you can see is your clothes full of spit up and piles of dirty dishes but keep your eyes on the ball they are only babies for the little time.
Don’t compare yourself with other people
Most of the time when we compare ourselves with others, we are comparing the wrong things. Some people are very good at something and not so good at other things.
Some people only show their good part, what they want you to believe, especially on social media.
You will see all this perfectly made meals looking so artistic and you look at your slow cooked meal, maybe yes that tired stew and it starts to create resentment. You don’t know the full picture of those; maybe that good looking meal is not an everyday thing, and the other day of the week the kids eat stale fries with ketchup.
Nobody will put themselves on social media with greasy hair, unshaven legs, and yoga pants because they don’t want you to see them in this way.
Everybody has their journey, and you shouldn’t compare your circumstances with theirs because will never match.
Find people who are alike, people who inspire you and are on similar journeys. For example, if you decide to be a stay at home mom you will be able to make good friends with other mom’s at playgroups, mom’s who are on similar journey, you can share opinions and experiences, recipes tips and tricks about life at home, rather than make your best friend your university mate who is not married nor has kids, manages to wear those magazine high heels and got the job that you wished for all those university years.
You will feel like a failure.
Once you make your decisions about your future, you weigh out the pros and the cons, and are sure about them, stick with them, be strong and remember why you are doing this. Everybody has their own priorities and you should be clear about yours.
Be on the same page with your partner
Since my little one was born I knew that we would not share the same bed.
We had a co-sleeper attached to the bed where he slept for the first couple of months. I knew that, for those few hours in between feeds and changing smelly bottom, I would not be able to fall into a deep sleep if the idea that I might squash this little person was possible.
We then decided as he was growing that a nap schedule should be implemented as it was becoming chaotic and was leaving me with no time for myself to do any housework or let alone spend time with my husband.
From the moment I started doing the schedule for naps, everything began to fall into place.
I had time to do everything I needed and even have time with my husband, just as a couple! Our son wasn’t so fussy anymore and started to play by himself more and more.
Sometimes it is easy for the baby to take over, (fully!!!) to get the last bit of your energy and attention and to lose track of your relationship, things to get cold and arguments to arise.
Make sure you allocate the right amount of time for your child, for your husband, for the house, as well as for your personal needs. Don’t let everything get mixed up and merge into one thing, trying to do much and achieve nothing situation.
Have an open conversation with your partner where you explain your needs and listen to his, and express what you expect from each other. Together try to come to a common plan and work on it from there.
In our household, we made this system which is very flexible but everybody knows what is happening.
For example, every time my husband comes home, I make sure food is ready or would be ready around 6pm. That’s when our son gets hungry too so, this time works well for our schedule.
We eat together as a family and after we finish, my husband helps me tidy up and then takes our son upstairs and plays with him, or we have some family time, but he always prepares our son for bed (bath/shower, book, teeth).
This is the time when they get a chance to bond and to do boy things. While they are upstairs I get my free time, I watch some telly, write a post or do whatever I feel like doing.
After our son is in bed, we get our time as a couple for the next 2-3 hours. This has worked for us and we don’t have arguments like “you never help me in the kitchen”, “I never get any time for myself”, “I don’t even get the chance to pee alone at least once per day”(from 6pm I do get the privilege do to that!).
Find out what works for you and decide with your partner in advance what is everybody’s job.
Do not expect your other half to just guess your needs “he knows that I am tired I’ve been running around all day, he doesn’t care” type of thoughts, will only bring conflict, instead express,”
I would appreciate if every evening you can spend some time with him while I go and shave my legs or have a bubble bath and get the chance to be baby free”.
Hopefully, these ideas will give you some direction and make you more confident in yourself.
Check out some of my other articles:
- Turn your picky eater around once and for all
- Do you get frustrated with your children? 10 tips to help you with this today!
- How to beat the stay-at-home mum blues