Do you need to Expand your Definition of Motherhood to include Looking after You?

Every day someone says to either my husband or myself “I don’t know how you do it with 6 children, we struggle with two (or one, or three…). Our approach to bringing up our children has been something that we have put a lot of thought, discussion, education, awareness and effort in to. It’s not perfect, but we love it! One of my primary goals for our children is that they stay connected with and don’t lose sight of ‘who they are’, their sense of community and a deep sense of belonging.

When you start to think of your family as a micro-community within a larger community, society, global community and our environment, then your approach to everything will begin to change and, dare I say, become easier.

Out of good intentions for the very best for their children, many people are focused on bringing up their children with an emphasis on rewarding good behaviour and punishing bad behaviour which from my experience has more disadvantages than advantages in the end. This child tends to believe that the whole world is centred around them and my experience, families taking this approach are exhausted and overwhelmed!  It can be a constant job to acknowledge the child and discipline them all the time.  When a child’s motivation is intrinsically motivated, instead of externally motivated you have a completely different ballgame on your hands..

One of the keys to this is to change your perspective to each individual being part of a collective, harnessing and developing their gifts and talents for the benefit of the community (on some levels that might be your nuclear family unit, school or wider community) then things play out in a very different way. Your children will eventually find their ‘niche’ and ‘tribe’ that really needs and appreciates what they have to offer – a valuable member of the community. Is this not one of the qualities you want to nurture and foster in your children? This may mean searching out a different school or community at some stage, or perhaps they are right at home where they are. Bliss.

I often ask new parents and parents-to-be, what qualities do you want your children to walk out the door with at 7 (starting school), 14 (high school) or 21 (adulthood)? Many parents haven’t thought about this too much, but when they do they often give me a similar set of answers such as resilience, manners, independence, creativity and respect (to name but a few). So then the question becomes, how do I, as a mother, nurture these qualities in my children and in our life while looking after my own needs? Now you have something to work with!

There is no doubt that being a mother is one of the most important jobs in the world.

So while motherhood is one of the most important jobs in the world you need to look after three key areas so that you are not sacrificing your own happiness, health and wellbeing but nurturing it and modelling and teaching this to your children.

  1. Looking after your own health and wellbeing and modelling this to your children.
  2. Becoming an informed parent so you can make conscious decisions for you and your family.
  3. Developing your intuition and trusting your inner knowing and teaching your children to do the same.

 

Here are ten ways to make sure that you are on track to becoming, not only an awesome mum, but also an awe-inspiring woman!

  1. Allow time for you to rest and recuperate (with and without the children).
  2. Lead a clean, healthy and rhythmic lifestyle. (Don’t eat late, eat crap and leave no time for an active lifestyle; aka exercise, fresh air, clean food and clean water!)
  3. Make time to do your much loved hobbies – who knows that might be a walk at the beach after dinner with your kids… BOOM! 3 birds with one stone! You’ve done something that you love, you’ve modelled a healthy lifestyle to your children and your children have had the same helping them to process their day and sleep well!
  4. Create community in your own life. WE WERE NOT supposed to do it alone. Cook together, car pool, join a food co-op, garden together, help each other out. Single parenting is a challenge for many and nuclear families carry much of the same problems.
  5. Keep an open mind – always be open to learning new ways of doing things.
  6. Become a ‘conscious’ parent who strives to be more aware of children’s development and lifestyle practices that will support your child emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually – not just academics, that’s just one part of us as a human being.
  7. Care about humanity and show your children what this means by DOING (compost, charity work, having other people’s kids after school, dropping a meal to a tired friend – oh and they just might do the same for you!)
  8. Take time for meditative practices (sewing, knitting, walking, cooking, yoga, meditation)
  9. Practice listening to your inner voice and using it to guide you. (Meditation helps with this). This seriously takes the load off. Decisions become clearer and easier.
  10. Hang out with people who lift you up! As they say, you are the sum of the 5 people you spend the most time with – so think carefully about this one. Who could you spend more time with and who could you spend less time with?

 

HINT: Just start with one!!! Pick the one thing from this list that will make the biggest difference in your life. You will be on the road to giving your children the absolute best start to life – not by sacrificing yourself but by living your life to the fullest.

Yoga is about becoming aware so that you can replace habits that don’t serve you with habits that do serve you. Start to take action on just one thing and your life will change dramatically.

 

Comment below the ONE THING that you are going to do to get the ball rolling in the direction of Thriving in Motherhood!  Who knows, this just may change someone else’s life and you will then be part of making a positive contribution to your society with this tiny act of sharing.

 

Tara x

P.s Join our Free Group Clarity Session and keep the good vibes going!

 

 

 

 

 

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