Dealing with "Mom Guilt"

We all deal with it at some point:  guilt as we try to make changes in how we live our lives.  And for those of us who have children, “Mom Guilt” can often keep us from doing the very things that would make us better…better people…better women…better moms.

It’s a vicious cycle that can cripple women in their efforts to better themselves, and in reality, affect the very people that they love the most.  Because the truth is that:

Every time we make a good and wise choice for our physical, mental, emotional or spiritual health, we increase our ability to positively influence our children…and everyone else around us.

For example, I know I have often found myself not feeding my children the more healthy meal, choosing instead, the more popular one…because I don’t want to be “that mom”.  I’d rather be the “June Cleaver” type that bakes delicious cookies, etcetera….

Of course,the reality is often just an excuse to not make the tough choices.

It is so hard.  It’s hard to do hard things and have those that you love the most resist and seem unhappy, and it’s often just enough to make the “guilt-ridden” moms of the world just give up.

But who wins when we do this?

Nobody.  (…except for companies like Kraft and Tollhouse!) 🙂

If we look at the trends in obesity and heart disease…and even cancer – in spite of the billions of dollars spent every year in research toward ending these diseases – we can see that it’s time for the moms to take back the reigns of our family’s and our own health, stop being guilted into making less than wise choices, and say “No more!”

Maybe we can’t change the world, but we sure can change our own little corner of it!

Remember, every wise life-choice is a choice that has the potential to become a wise habit in those whom we influence.

It has been said that it only takes doing something for 30 days for it to become a habit.  I guess the same could be said for undoing a bad habit…

So, what are thing things that we can do, as women, for the next 30 days that will change our habits…change us?

For me, there are several things:

  • Going to bed before 11.
  • Preparing healthier, more plant-based meals, for the entire family instead of just “juicing” my own dinner and making something different for the family that they will like.
  • Giving attention to myself – emotionally and spiritually – early in the day (which, unfortunately, means getting up before the sun – since high school now begins before 7 am!!), so I’m not tempted to need “me time” so late at night…then I have a hard time waking up...begin vicious cycle….
  • Stop compartmentalizing the things that I need to do to stay healthy – if they are wise choices for me, then, chances are, they are wise choices for my children too!

Above all, I need to give myself permission to change! 

Resistance from your children when you change things like the meals you prepare or the amount of television watched in the home is…their job!

But, just think how much easier your own life would be if you had made whatever changes you need to make in childhood…rather than having to do it in your 30’s...ahem….or beyond.

One of the greatest gifts you can give your children is to take care of their mother.

That’s more valuable than a batch of cookies any day!

Be empowered!