Last week I wrote a post on happiness and positivity. I purposefully chose things that related only to me and not my family.
Despite the upbeat tone of the post, I found myself dwelling on my own selfishness, ‘mum guilt’ and my fear of not being a good enough mum to my beautiful children.
Then I gave myself a metaphorical shake. Why is it selfish for a mum to want some time to herself? Why do I judge myself so much more harshly than I would anybody else?
Negativity is a worm that burrows into your mind and sucks the enjoyment from life. I want my children to know their worth but how can they if I don’t show them that I value myself?
The real danger is for children to not see their mum as a person. To think they are infallible. It sets up the whole family for failure with unrealistic expectations. Children may even have trouble dealing with their own mistakes as they have no example to follow.
So here is how to beat it (I need to follow these tips too!)
Treat yourself like a friend. If they told you they felt lost, what would your advice be? Now follow it yourself!
Ask yourself why you feel guilty. Are you being unreasonable and are your expectations too high? Chances are, yes!
I feel bad when I check my emails or have to work. But honestly, the children don’t need my attention 100% of the time (take note Zach: you can watch 15 minutes of TV without me holding your hand!). We want our children to grow into independent individuals so they need to have space to be on their own and learn about themselves.
I also feel guilty when I get Chris to entertain the kids. He has been at work all day and must want to relax, surely? Well actually, he wants to spend time with his family. Make his own memories with them. This is a really tough one for me to overcome. Because I spend almost all my time with the children, it is a treat to go to the toilet on my own or fill the dishwasher without an audience.
Think about your own childhood. I didn’t see my parents cry until I was in my teens. It was a complete shock. My children have seen me cry. I want them to know that emotion over everyday issues is acceptable and healthy.
I find it helps to remember that I am Laura. I was Laura before I had the children and I will be Laura when they have grown up and left home. If I lose myself now, what will be left once the children have flown the nest?
To help you relax I have a competition below to win some Avon lavender products, perfect for pampering and relaxing! You have to promise to enjoy and don’t feel guilty if you win!