Since the beginning of time, all human beings have sought the same thing: TO BE HAPPY! The problem is that in the heat of motherhood, and parenthood and life, happiness can be hard to find. And when “momma aint happy, aint nobody happy.” The cooking and cleaning and whining and chauffeuring, and inability to have 30 seconds of privacy to use the bathroom alone, can sometimes make us feel like it is impossible to be a happy mom.
But that is not the case. Consistent research shows that happy moms have a few things in common. Here are 6 things that Happy moms do. These tips for being a happy mom could work for all of us!
First, Happy Moms Recognize Their Worth and don’t Compare.
The time has come when we need to accept ourselves. As we are. We need to love ourselves, inside and out, strengths and weaknesses. Right now. Not when we lose 10 pounds, or when we finally get on top of the laundry, or when we have more time for ourselves. Right now. Instead of wondering if we are good enough, we need to remember that our role is the THE most important role. We are raising future generations. Nurturing small people who will influence others and go out into the world and make an impact. We are responsible for the future. What could be more worthwhile? Nothing! Even if you don’t have children of you own, there is nothing that compares to a women’s loving influence on the people around her.
This means we also have to stop comparing. If we want to be happy, we have to stop. We are usually comparing our weaknesses to someone else’s strengths, and that is not a fair comparison. Plus, comparing brings feelings of jealousy and envy. Those lead to misery. There will always be someone who wears a smaller size, or has a cleaner house. But so what? Comparing will not make us skinnier or our house cleaner. It just wastes our time and energy. We need to stop comparing our family and ourselves and our children, to others.
Find time today, right now even, to write down all the things you are good at. Don’t be embarrassed or shy, write them all down. Good friend, funny, strong. Own that list, and find strength in it. Commit to use those strengths to help others and we will come to recognize our true worth.
Second, Happy Moms Stop Worrying
I am very guilty of this. It is getting better, but I am constantly worrying about everything. Which causes stress, we makes me unhappy. Here is the key. If you can’t change it or control it, then there is no need to worry about it. Instead think about what you can control and put your efforts there.
Third, Happy Moms Have Faith and Pray
Research shows that the act of being faithful, in and of itself raises our spirits and gives us hope. Hope is happy and healing. Couple that hope with prayer and the sun will shine happy rays. 🙂 Even on the worst of days, having faith that we are trying our best and that tomorrow will be better, can help us feel happy today.
Prayer can help us lead happier lives also. It gives us a chance to express gratitude and ask for help. No matter the higher power you pray too, be specific in your prayers. My prayers often ask for stamina to play zoo with our two year old and act like a dog again. Or to help me figure out what to make for dinner, or how to find more time for our family to be together amongst a busy schedule. Often times my prayers are asking to simply get through the next 5 minutes because they can seem overwhelming. Faith and prayer help because I know that I am never alone. And often times, at home with toddlers, can feel very lonesome.
Fourth, Happy Moms Choose Friends Wisely.
My husband and I are always telling our children how important it is to choose good friends. That same advice applies to us too. We need to surround ourselves with people who lift us up, who believe in us, and who support us. Avoid relationships that are one sided and draining. We want friends who don’t compare, who revel in our successes and who believe in lifting others up, not putting others down. That is also the type of friend we want to be for those around us.
Fifth, Happy Moms Simplify
Happy moms make sure their schedules are not too full. They don’t over-schedule their kids or themselves. In fact, one or two extra curricular activities for kids, and for moms, is plenty. Juggling a million things doesn’t make us better moms with cooler kids. It just stresses us out. Stress is not happy.
This applies to our homes also. Too many clothes and toys in our homes and cars add stress. It can become overwhelming to manage so much stuff. Simplify. Cut down to what is manageable and spend less time keeping up with all the stuff, and more time with those you love, doing things you want to do and being happy.
Sixth, Happy Moms Make Time For Themselves
As mothers and women, we tend to take care of ourselves last. I have caught myself more than once saying “when the kids are older then I will have time for….”. We need to stop thinking like that. We should find some time for ourselves to cultivate our gifts and interests. Pick one or two things that you would like to learn to do that will enrich your life, and make time for them. For me, one of these things is exercise. I have to make time for it in my life or I am not happy. I don’t have to take it to an extreme, and I am willing to sacrifice sleep to fit it in, but it is something I need to make time for to stay sane. Think about what it is for you. That “thing” that you want to do or try and work it into your family life. It is not selfish.
Coupled with the above six suggestions, remember that if we want to be happy moms, we need to smile and laugh. Aubrey Hepburn said that “Happy girls are the prettiest girls” and she was right. Which means that “happy moms are the prettiest moms” too! Time to be happy and pretty! Laughing and smiling naturally bring happiness. Let your face light up and giggle. Smile at someone else and watch their face light up. We need to stop being so rushed and serious that we forget to be happy. Even if you have to force the smile. Smile anyway, and eventually your mind and heart will catch up with your mouth.
What can you do to be more happy?
Which of the above suggestions are most difficult for you?
What helps you be a happy mom?
Thanks for letting me join you again this month on OSSS! Feel free to visit me at Family Volley any time.