I remember one day when my son was just under a year old, I was working day and night to get my social media business off the ground and I was totally overwhelmed. I had gone to the store to send my cousin a box of clothes for her baby and planned to pay in cash. When I went to pay, I could not find my money ($20) anywhere. Then, all of a sudden, I just started crying.
I cried all the way home.
I know, pretty dramatic for $20. But, it wasn't about the money at all. I was still a new mom, a single mom, trying to figure not only how to be a mom but how in the world I was going to provide for my son.
Thankfully, I identified pretty quickly that this was due to feeling overwhelmed because I was then able to fix it. And ever since the day I cried over $20, I have been intentional about paying attention to the signs of overwhelm as well as making changes in my life to prevent overwhelm in the first place.
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So, how can you be a less overwhelmed mom?
Here are a few things I've learned to do to help ease and prevent the overwhelming feelings of motherhood:
Keep your family priorities straight
It's inevitable if your priorities are out of whack, you will be, too! Make a list of your family priorities and do what you need to do to preserve those priorities. This means there are things that you will need to learn to say "no" to. Your kids don't need to join every sport or activity and you don't need to attend every party, especially if these things are going to stand in the way of your family priorities.
Drop the mom guilt
Guilt is mentally exhausting and mental exhaustion leads to being overwhelmed. I realize that dropping mom guilt is easier said than done but one thing that helps me get rid of my mom guilt is asking myself if there is anything that can be done to fix whatever it is that I'm feeling guilty about. I will then either be able to fix it or simply accept the fact that I can't and, either way, I can stop feeling guilty!
Learn how to manage your anxiety
I wrote a post last year on how to cope with anxiety and I was shocked by the response and the fact that so many people struggle with this. If your anxiety level is high, you can be certain that you will feel overwhelmed. Learning some skills to reduce anxiety will be huge for minimizing your feelings of being overwhelmed.
Look for opportunities to delegate
Most of us feel overwhelmed because there's so much on our metaphorical plates. But clearing the plate is often easier than we realize. If you want to reduce the stress in your life, look for some ways that you can delegate to others.
Something that puts a lot of pressure on me is not using my family for babysitting too much. I prefer to grocery shop alone but when I do, I feel like I'm on a time crunch and what is for many moms like a mini vacation, is quite stressful for me. So, I've started to delegate! As much as I love walking the aisles of a grocery store, the stress is not worth it. I've been using a grocery delivery service for a couple of weeks now and it has helped tremendously!
Say "yes" to help
When I was in my early twenties I had a really hard time accepting things like a man offering to carry something for me. It wasn't necessarily that I was offended by this, it just felt silly to me at times because I was perfectly capable of doing it myself. Then, one day I realized it didn't hurt anything for me to say, "yes" and even though I "could" do it myself, there was nothing wrong with letting someone else lighten my load.
I've had to come to this same realization when it comes to parenting. It doesn't hurt anything to take someone else up on their offer to lighten my load, even when it's something I "could" do myself.
If someone else wants to lighten your load, let them. You don't have to do everything just because you can.
These are just a few things I've learned that help me to be a less overwhelmed mom. What about you? Do you have any of your own tips?