Hey self, how are you?
Don’t have time to breathe huh? Feeling like a desperately overwhelmed mom? Well sit back for a moment, put down your phone and read these few paragraphs. Let me remind you of a few things.
I get that you’re busy. There’s a lot to do! Kids, baby, teens, dishes, floors, laundry, driving everywhere, blogging, working.. the to-do list is a mile long. You’ve been trying to fit in time to work out for months, and taking a shower means sacrificing sleep you desperately need.
I get it.
Every time you think you’ve got this, got a rhythm going, it’s like you’ve leveled up in the video game. And for some reason, everything just gets harder. Are you doing this to yourself? Is it just a fact of life? How does it happen..
I know you think back to a year ago, two years ago, even ten years ago, and fondly remember sitting down and enjoying a book. Or having the time and space to paint your own nails.
You forget a lot, you know.
You’ve always been busy. Since becoming a mom, there hasn’t been a moment where you haven’t been busy, desperately overwhelmed trying to juggle all the things to do, craving sleep, and needing a shower. One child, two children.. six children, there’s been no time in the past where you weren’t just as busy as you are now.
You’ve managed this before. When you think back to times when it seemed like you had more time, it’s because you developed systems and skills to manage better. You’ve got those skills now. Use them!
So it seems like you’re overwhelmed. Wanna throw a toddler-like tantrum?
If the grumpy mom is coming out more than the mom you want to be, check yourself. Have you eaten lately? More than your kids’ leftovers? Maybe go and grab an apple or a cracker and drink a big cup of water.
Yeah, take a few minutes and drink some water. If anything, it will give you a few seconds to think.
Self care is important. So if you haven’t showered in the last day or so, maybe sit the kids down with cereal and a TV show, and go get clean. Maybe put on a 2nd show and paint your nails too.
It’s ok to ask for help. It may seem hard to find the help, but it is around. So get yourself a night out. Go watch a movie maybe. Or just sit in a coffee shop and read that book you haven’t been able to for a while. Sometimes just a couple hours is all you need to reset and be able to pick up and carry on.
Once the moment of panic has passed, it might be time for a deeper check.
What’s really overwhelming you?
Maybe you’ve been neglecting something? A cluttered house and nagging chores can contribute to your sense of desperation. So never mind the deadlines, take a day to take care of some of those ignored-for-far-too-long tasks. Or, even better, hire someone else.
Maybe it’s just been too many long days and not enough sleep, for far too long. Lack of sleep will make any overwhelmed mom feel desperate. So forget the to-do list, ask for that help you’ve been reluctant to ask for, and take a nap. Or maybe have everyone take a nap! I’m sure no one will be hurt by extra sleep.*
*if you have toddlers on a strict sleep schedule, don’t do this!
And maybe, just maybe, it is a case of saying yes when you should have said no. Sometimes your desperately juggling, super-busy days are because you were handling things so well, and forgot everything you do, and took on one more thing.
And one more thing can be the one thing that breaks everything.
If you’ve gotten to the breaking point, you may need to re-evaluate your priorities. And you may have to say no to things you really don’t want to say no to. Friends you don’t want to say no to, but you’ve got to for your own sake.
Your sanity sometimes means you have to admit you can’t do everything.
You’ll be OK though. Because you can do anything. And you can do something different.