Let’s be honest. Women today are expected to BE it all, DO it all, and JUGGLE it all.
From taking care of the kids to succeeding at work, managing the home, setting up playdates, driving from one activity to the next, helping with homework, helping the PTA, fitting in a workout, enjoying a girls night out, scheduling date nights, and carving out quality family time, it is A LOT!
And while most women want to do it all, be it all, and juggle it all, it doesn’t mean we should or can!
When it comes to being a great mom, wife, and woman, we have to learn our limits. Role modeling overwhelm is not the example we want to set for our children, so recognizing when too much is too much is essential.
Of course, there will always be busy days, weeks, and months (i.e., December!), but even still, there is a way to decrease stress and take care of ourselves.
Below are 5 tips for letting go of the belief that you can and should do it all.
- Practice Saying “No” – Saying “No” can be hard, especially for women. We do not want to disappoint anyone or let anyone down, but if you are going to get in the habit of taking care of yourself, you have to start with a few “Nos.” If this is tough for you, start small. Look for little areas in your life where you can say “no” to a request. Even not saying “Yes” is a “No” for many women who take on too much.
- Schedule Self-Care – If you are someone who takes care of everybody else, I can bet that you find it challenging to carve out time for you. Putting everyone else first is not good for your well-being or mental health, and it is not the example you want to set for your children. So, start breaking this habit by putting self-care on the calendar. Make yourself part of your daily/weekly to-do list! For example, book a massage, facial, or pedicure. Schedule lunch with a friend or time with a trainer. Hire a nanny/babysitter to come once per week and just take a walk through a park or read a book in bed!
- Ask for Help! – If you have taken on too much or are overwhelmed, ask for help! Too many women struggle through the overwhelm and try to handle everything on their own. Whether that means they avoid asking their husbands for help, worry about asking their friends to take their kids for an afternoon, or fear asking a co-worker for assistance with a project. When you realize that you have overcommitted, the best thing you can do is ASK FOR HELP! Do not stay up late, do not neglect yourself, do not suffer in order to please others. ASK FOR HELP!
- Manage Your Expectations – Would you like to earn a healthy living for your family, pack the kids lunches, help in the classroom, tuck the kids into bed every night, cook healthy meals, get to the gym, have date nights, attend PTA meetings, organize your kitchen, clean out the closets, enjoy family time all weekend? (I CAN GO ON)… Of course, you would! But you CAN’T. You CANNOT DO IT ALL! You have to be realistic with yourself about what you can do. To do this, identify your top priorities and be great at those things. When you overcommit, you are not good at anything, but when you’re realistic with what you can do and do it well, everyone wins!
- Stop Comparing Yourself – We all know women who seem to juggle the madness of motherhood, married life, and self-care with ease. They are involved, helpful, organized, attractive, and make life seem so easy! But we do not really know what is happening behind closed doors. We do not know how they are doing, how they are feeling, what may be suffering, lacking, struggling. Rather than comparing yourself, get in the habit of praising YOURSELF! Acknowledge yourself for all that you ARE doing WELL!
OK, mamas! I hope this helps you start to let go of the feeling that you need to DO it ALL, BE it ALL, and JUGGLE it ALL. Start applying these 5 tips, and you’ll quickly let of your old “do it all” ways and grow into a healthier version of you!