Raising children is hard work. It involves a lot of crying and a lot of sleepless nights. All parents go through a period of adjustment, especially in the difficult first few months after the baby’s birth.
We have many clients who despair that they don’t have it all together. That they see other Mum’s that look like they have a real handle on things, and that they are failing (secret: you’re not failing, you’re nailing it mama!).
They are the envy of those of us normal people who are frazzled and frantically trying to get from one place to another. These mums might have gone through postnatal depression themselves but are able to bounce back from depression and keep a happy and positive attitude. That kind of disposition does not happen overnight. It is obtained by practising some mindful habits.
What are the secrets of these unbelievably upbeat mums?
Firstly, it’s managing your own expectations. Learning that you don’t have it do it all, and even dropping your standards for the things you are doing. Here’s some tips on being a happy mum.
- Happy mums create opportunities for learning and fun. They’re always up for an impromptu trip to the butterfly sanctuary or the zoo.
- Happy mums know how to let their frustrations out in a healthy way. They go for a run, go boxing, or just scream into a pillow.
- Happy mums don’t try to do everything by themselves. They call in the big guns, Grandma and Grandpa, for help in watching the kids when they need a night out.
- Happy mums have a secret stash of Cherry Ripe in their glovebox to eat at the lights when they’re by themselves.
- Happy mums assign one day a week as take-out night so they’re not always cooking and have more time for bonding with the family. Besides, pizza is a complete food group.
- Happy mums have their own hobbies. It could be knitting, gardening, running, or doing yoga. They have activities that enable them to learn, grow, and have fun outside of family activities. Some join book clubs, and some join zumba dance groups.
- Happy mums recognize that parenting is a gift and a wonderful opportunity. They are extremely grateful for the chance to be a parent. They keep gratitude journals or have apps for keeping track of what they’re thankful for on their phones.
- Happy mums have self care rituals. It isn’t just about setting an appointment for a much needed haircut, but about actually taking the time to incorporate self care rituals like an at home massage or a date night out with the hubby.
- Happy mums hang a do not disturb sign out the bathroom door and soak in the tub with a good book and a glass of wine.
- Happy mums eat well but indulge in the occasional slice of chocolate fudge cake.
- Happy mums make technology work for them instead of against them. They use it to do their groceries online, cause a toddler meltdown in the shops is unavoidable sometimes.
- Happy mums keep their sanity by practising meditation with the help of mindfulness apps such as Headspace and Calm.
- I see many happy Mums for a weekly counselling session. Happy Mum’s ask for help and look after their mental health. If you’d like to see if a session is right for you, then just call us for a complimentary consult on 0424 140 970.
How about you? What are your happy mum habits? Share them with us! We’d love to hear from you.