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I recommend the following 8 non-traditional self care tips to help mom's maintain motivation sanity:
Ponder- Think about what you want and where you are. What's the reality of your situation? If you have 2 children and you and your husband both work outside the home than you're going to need to be patient and creative with the expectations of yourself, your family and what you want to achieve. Practice the reality check, acceptance and future planning.
Prioritize - Make yourself a priority. Talk about your desires (of course not incessantly) but when it's naturally reasonable. For example, depending on how old your child is you can make it into a fun conversation: Mommy's so excited that she'll be working on writing her book for 30 minutes. High five to mommy for going after her dreams!" Practice speaking and thinking of your self as separate from yet inter-connected with your children and husband.
Plan - create a flexible schedule. Bear in mind what you pondered on and get out your calendar and write out what you think can happen. Remember, being able to adjust is essential. Practice organizing your life.
Pleasure - I mean take genuine pleasure in whatever time you do get and whatever you manage to get done. Don't fret if your hour session ends up being 30 minutes. Don't pout if you didn't get all the time you wanted this week. There's always next week. Talk about how pleased you are with your progress. No matter how big or small, all of your progress has value. Practice feeling good.
Provoke - Be a little aggressive with yourself. Instead of feeling guilty and torn for even thinking about taking 10 minutes for yourself, demand of yourself what you'd most likely recommend to a good friend in a similar situation. Practice standing up to yourself.
Please - Please yourself in small bites. Take a 5 or 10 minute break. Train your children to respect mommy time. Tell them this is mommy's break time and that you get 10 uninterrupted minutes to do what you need to do. Eventually, possibly with some resistance, your family will learn to respect you for declaring yourself as valuable. Practice teaching respect.
Play - Do something playful and fun with your kids and husband. When we stop playing it makes our minds atrophy. Doing something in the spirit of spontaneity and fun strengthens our connections and re-fuels our love tank. Practice reconnecting through play.
Publicize - Share. Yes, share your accomplishments with your kidlets and hubby. Leave some space on the front of the fridge for public display of your achievements. Practice announcing your accomplishments.
The bottom line is that staying motivated can be a real challenge, but moms have to get in the drivers seat on this. Your kids won't naturally identify you as having a life separate from them. So, that leaves the responsibility on your shoulders to create the kind of environment that shows your family that when mommy practices great self care the family gets the benefit of right quality results!
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The phone rings. The Greek Mother picks it up and the following conversation ensues.
Greek Mother: Hello?
Daughter: Hi Mum. Can you look after the children for me tonight?
Greek Mother: Are you going out?
Greek Mother: Who with?
Daughter: A friend.
Greek Mother: I just can't understand why you left your husband. Such a nice boy!
Daughter: I didn't leave him, he left me!
Greek Mother: You let him leave you, and now you go out with just anyone.
Daughter: I don't go out with just anyone. Can I bring the kids round?
Greek Mother: I never left you to go out with anyone but your father.
Daughter: Yes, but you did lots of things I don't.
Greek Mother: Now what are you hinting at?
Daughter: Nothing. I just want to know if you can look after the kids tonight.
Greek Mother: Are you going to spend the night with him? What will you husband say when he finds out?
Daughter: You mean my ex-husband! I don't think he'll be bothered, I doubt he's slept alone since he left!
Greek Mother: So you're going to sleep over at this loser's house?
Daughter: He's not a loser.
Greek Mother: Any man who goes out with a divorced woman with children is a loser and a parasite.
Daughter: Look, I'm not going to discuss it. Can I bring the kids over or not?
Greek Mother: Poor children, with a mother like that...
Daughter: What do you mean, a mother like that?
Greek Mother: With no stability... Huh, that's why your husband left you...
Daughter: Can you hear yourself? You're impossible! You should be ashamed of yourself!
Greek Mother: Don't you shout at me! I bet that's how you shout at that loser, too!
Daughter: Oh, so now you're worried about the loser?
Greek Mother: Aha, you see, you admit he's a loser. I knew it!
Daughter: I'm hanging up, Mum.
Greek Mother: Hold on love! Don't hang up! What time are you bringing the children round?
Daughter: I'm not bringing them round and I'm not going out, the way you've been driving me round the bend!
Greek Mother: But love, if you never go out, how are you going to meet a nice young man?