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To be a happy mom, you don’t follow a list. To live as a happy mom, is to live a happy mommy lifestyle.
The list is handy, yes, but only to pick and choose things from that you can insert into your daily life.
A happy mommy has a secret formula that she lives by every day. A secret formula to be a happy mom always, every day.
Want to know what that is? I’ll tell you…
Quick wee side note: Because I know how hard it can be to come up with fun games each time, I’ve created a 7-day challenge for parents of toddlers and preschoolers. This is a great way to get started if you’ve fallen out of the habit of playing with your kids, or to learn about fresh ideas and activities.
Each day for 1 week, you will receive an e-mail with an activity that you can do with your kids. Join the newsletter and start your 7 days of play today!
Being a mom is the hardest job ever
And as if the job itself isn’t hard enough, us modern moms combine it with a paid job as well; after all, most of us have some sort of career.
Inbetween wiping noses, wipping up a healthy dinner and adulting as a proffessional we can easily lose ourselves. We might stop looking after ourselves, stop being our healthy selves.
Before you know it, we’re stressed, yelling at the kids or worse: suffering from mom-burnout.
That’s exactly the spot I ended up in, with no idea how to get out again.
I knew I had to climb back out of the hole I was in and started searching. But in my panicked state I had no idea how to actually live differently.
I couldn’t change what I was doing, because first I had to change how I was thinking.
I needed to change how I was living.
So I came up with a daily routine that left me not only calmer, but also with time to myself! The formula to be a happy mom always!
And you know what they say:
Happy mom, happy kids.
Happy mom, happy family!
RELATED: How to stop negative thoughts
How to be happy always as a mom: get dressed and started
Get up earlier
If possible, get up before everybody else (read: before the kids) so you have a little time to look after yourself.
If you want to be happy always as a mom then this is essential. How you feel about yourself, your life and your surroundings depends on how you see yourself. So choose to see yourself as a clean, dressed human being.
If you are up before everyone else, you get to take that shower, get dressed and also enjoy the quiet of the early morning (before the storm of kids turns loose).
But, however you do it, make sure you shower, get dressed and put on some mascara. You won’t believe the difference those three simple things make!
You’ll feel clean, human and pretty.
If I feel really fancy, I’ll even put some perfume on. Purely for my own pleasure 🙂
Use a screen or some toys
In summer, when it’s light early and the kids wake up early, don’t feel too bad about using the television as an early morning baby sitter.
Alternatively, you can put out a box of toys in their room before you go to sleep the previous night.
The kids find the toys ready to play in the morning and will probably be playing happily for a while. That way, they have a safe place to play, while you put yourself together after sleep.
Chore no. 1
Do one simple, small chore in the morning. Something that otherwise gets left undone and will get on your nerves.
What is the one thing that always mucks up the household for the day? Get that done immediately.
Not quite like swallowing the frog, but something like it. Just get it out of the way.
For me that’s the dishes. If I don’t clean out the dish washer in the morning, it just doesn’t happen until it’s time to cook dinner. And then I have to do it or I won’t be able to use the kitchen counter anymore.
Drives me bonkers!
So, while the kids are playing (usually still in their underwear; Perfect mommy is a different blog) and nibbling at their sandwiches or porridge, I unload the dishwasher.
That’s it. It’s really not that much to do, but it means that throughout the day I can put stuff away immediately and it makes all the difference in how the day runs.
So what’s you nuisance thing? Get it done early!
How to be a happy mom always: Do less
Now that we have the early morning behind us, we’ve all eaten and are kind-of dressed, it is time to do less.
The morning is the time to start the day right and I’ve yet to hear of a hack that truly makes mornings with kids less hectic (feel free to leave your advice in the comments). But after we’ve started the day, it is high time to move out of the running zone and into the flow zone.
Do less 3x.
Do away with one thing on your to-do list
We try to do too much.
It’s a bit in the times and our culture. But us moms surely top it. We’ll try to do too much in any of the roles that we play, simultaneously.
And then we get frustrated that we can’t get everything done.
If you have more than 3 items on your to-do list (for every job & role, for the whole day) then it is imperative you take some items off your list.
NEVER commit yourself to doing more than 3 things in a day.
Odds are, with kids you’ll never get to do more than that anyway. And even if you have time left, use it to drink a cup of tea. Look outside. Look after yourself!
Do one thing at a time
To be a happy mom, you need to only do one thing at a time.
One thing and one thing only.
If you are making sandwiches, then you are not also on the phone and typing.
If you are doing the laundry, then you are not also talking to your kid or husband.
You do one thing at a time and you treat that thing as if it’s the most important thing in the world.
Why? Well, why else are you wasting your precious time on this thing if it’s not important?
That, and because if you try to multi-task you’ll actually be more ineffecient AND you’ll get frustrated because you’re forever doing things half and half-heartedly.
Don’t be one of those people who are never present at what they are doing. You are not getting that time back.
Most of us rush all the time. Mainly, because we try to do so much in as little time as we can. For various reasons.
Sometimes we rush because we hate the job that we’re doing right now.
Sometimes we rush because our to-do list is too long (if that’s you then re-read the paragraph above!)
But what happens when we rush? It doesn’t feel good, does it?
We get stressed. Upset. Annoyed.
We start yelling…
Downhill from there.
It’s not conducive behavior if you want to be a happy mom.
When we rush, we are fighting against the way things are right now. If we rush all the time, it means that, mentally, we fight all the time.
It’s not a very healthy state to be in.
Taking it easy is such a better way to be. And if you try it then I am sure that suddenly you’ll find silly, boring chores to be quite peaceful. You’ll find that you can involve the kids or your husband and enjoy the time you spend together, rather then hating the thing that you’re doing.
So, to be a happy mom: slow down and do things at your pace.
How to be a happy mom always: Love
It’s a verb
To love is a verb, it is something that you do.
I should really stop writing there 🙂
But really, love is not something that you have and consequently could run out of. Love is something that you have to do. To love is to stop for a moment and ask yourself what you can do to share love.
With yourself if nobody else is around, or if you’re the only one who hasn’t had any yet 🙂
What can you do for your partner or kids?
Make a cup of coffee, or play a game of crazy eights with the kids. Give them a hug or tell them how special they are. Then, sit back and take in the smile and love given back.
Another way to share and grow the love in and around you is by being social.
Visit some friends or the neighbours. Or give your own mom a call. But go out there and talk to people.
I mean real people, apping them on your smartphone does not count.
To be a happy mom, you have to be able to hear the smile in their voice and get the full impact of what they have to say.
So go outside and meet up with some people. It can even be at the park or when you pick up the kids from school, but do talk to people and feel your spirits get lifted.
Be with the kids
To be a happy mom always: Be with the kids, but be with them truly. Not just in body, but also in mind.
I like to watch them sometimes so take in how happy and uncaring they are. To see the sparkle in their eyes. Or just to listen to the extatic laugher. You know, the way only kids laugh?
I try to find things to do with the kids that we all enjoy, such as playing board games, taking a walk or going to see the boats and ships in the river nearby. We play games outside or I read them a book.
But to spend time with them, without feeling as if I am supposed to do something else is absolutely wonderful.
It’s a love unlike any other.
Who cares that the laundry isn’t folded yet (put it in a basket and in the laundry room = cleaned up look). That the placemats are still on the table. Sharing the love with my kids is more important and more rewarding then whether the house is perfect.
Remember, happy mom happy kids?
It works the other way around as well: happy kids happy mom.
How to be a happy mom always?
Well, there are always days that are not quite as good as other day.
But, I find that as long as I follow these three tennets, then there is a happy mommy inside me somewhere and I can reach out to her. I can get back on my happy horse and stay there.
As long as I make sure I shower and dress in the morning, take on no more than 3 priorities during the day and make time to love, things are just fine.
In fact, they are more than just fine…things are perfectly happy 🙂
Want to spend more time with the kids, but short of ideas to play? Why not play this hilarious game of family-friendly conversation starters?