Before I was a mama, I honestly thought that mommy guilt was something that you could just “get over” if you tried really hard. When I actually became a mama and continued to work full time and work on my fitness goals of getting healthy again after pregnancy, that is when I really learned about dealing with mommy guilt.
It’s interesting to me, because there are so many opinions out there of what a proper mother should be.
These opinions are garbage, by the way
Ranging from the 1950’s stereotype of women should only at home, cook, clean, and bare children. To the 2019 version of the mommy who is super woman and “does it all”.
What’s even more bothersome
Is that there is now a movement of if you want to lose unwanted baby weight and get healthier and stronger, that you’re somehow not embracing the child and pregnancy that you went through.
There are lots of mamas out there that I have spoken with that feel completely overwhelmed, they’re terrified of letting themselves go, but the mommy guilt sets in, they’re afraid of what society thinks about them wanting to get fit again.
Not only that, when they see that their house is a mess and they want to go workout, they feel guilty for wanting to do something for themselves.
Believe me when I say, I understand that feeling of mommy guilt.
My house looks like a small tornado has gone through it each day. Before I had my precious boy, our house was spick and span.
Our floors didn’t have random sticky spots and my hair was clean 99% of the time.
Now, there are random sticky spots, I have been known to go on 5 days worth of dry shampoo, and there tends to be dog hair in the corner.
Are we dirty people? Nope, but we live and work in our house.
I have my local clients that I am out of the house for, but otherwise, I am here raising a very active 3 year old boy while running a business.
Believe me. The mommy guilt is real. There are times that I give him my phone to play his game so I can get some work done.
Talk about mommy guilt, am I right?
Want to know something even worse? Sometimes I put in 2 movies back to back because I’m behind on deadlines and other things.
I know, right?
Believe me when I say, the mommy guilt is hard and dealing with mommy guilt can be even harder.
But here’s the actual deal. Dealing with mommy guilt is possible.
I really don’t want to say that you can “overcome” mommy guilt. Because, well, I’m a realist.
The reality is that I take motherhood very seriously. I’m talking extremely seriously. With that seriousness comes the reality of having to deal with feelings of guilt, even if those feelings of guilt and feeling like I’m not doing enough or am enough are a lie.
My son is a small human and the responsibility of raising him to be a decent human who loves his family, works hard, and contributes to society is mine and my husband’s.
And the days where it is necessary to use the screen as a baby sitter, whether the reasoning is to actually get work done, or even just to have an hour to relax and just sit and read a book or something; I find it extremely difficult to “overcome” that mommy guilt of feeling like a bad mommy.
What about when you want to go workout?
There’s still dishes in the sink, laundry is piled to the ceiling, your boss is texting you asking you about a project going on at work, and you don’t even want to think about that sticky spot in the middle of the floor…. It’s super hard to not have that mommy guilt, isn’t it?
So what’s a mama to do?
Here are a few things that I do whenever the mommy guilt is really strong.
First thing – I remember that I am enough
Just like you are enough. Your family loves you, regardless of if there are dishes in the sink or mystery sticky spots on the floor or if your hair could cure the oil crisis.
On the days that my mommy guilt is the worst, I try to remember that my best effort is what my family needs. Which is what I give. And that is enough.
Second, I go over what I did do that day:
Let’s be honest, there are not “enough” hours in the day. But guess what? 24 hours is what God created a day to be, so it’s our job to deal. We do our best and move on.
Whenever I felt like “I haven’t done enough” to warrant some “me time”. I write down what I’ve done that day.
That me time could be a workout, or a shower without rushing through it to get back out of the shower before my house is destroyed or he hurts himself.
Take a second to reflect on the day…
I write down or remember and go through absolutely everything that took place that day. From the moment I woke up, to the present second, I review what has been done.
The list will often times add up to lots of things.
But, what if it doesn’t for the day? What if the list is short?
Listen carefully… It’s totally fine if your list isn’t a mile long.
That is something that I have to remind myself of everyday. That I don’t have to kill myself every single day just to get through a checklist.
Quality over quantity.
Last thing for dealing with mommy guilt? I take that me time.
Diving into that workout head first and pushing to the max will get those endorphins flowing and you will feel better.
Remember on the movie Legally Blonde where she says “Endorphins make you happy. Happy people don’t kill their husbands. They just don’t!”
While I know we love our men, the point remains, endorphins are released when you’re working out and they will make a huge difference in your disposition.
You’re not going to walk out of the gym and go “gosh. I wish I wouldn’t have worked out.”
You’re going to walk out thinking, “I killed it! Now I’m ready to tackle what is waiting for me at home and at work”.
The mommy guilt is so real, but it can be dealt with.
Sometimes I let the guilt overwhelm me and I will literally sit on my bed and think about everything that I “need” to do, or “should” be doing and sometimes… I cry.
Talk about real talk, amIright?
Being a wife, mama, and running my own business it absolutely overwhelming and I have to consistently clear my calendar of overwhelm.
It has to be done at least every two weeks and sometimes every single week. We have to guard our time. We must!
Preaching to the choir, I know, but here. Let me send you a quick guide for clearing your calendar of overwhelm.
It’s a step by step guide to help you literally clear your calendar while only keeping the things that are important and within your goal set.
One last thing, mama. I want you to remember this and I promise it is something that I too have to remind myself of everyday….
It is okay to have goals for yourself. Having fitness goals for yourself is not selfish. Having lifestyle goals is not selfish.
When I take the time to take care of myself, I am a better wife and mother. It truly is that simple.
Remember that you are more than a checklist.
You are a human being with needs and goals. Embrace them and run with them.