You can do it. Seriously, you’re a mom, you can do anything! So just stop talking about it and do it!!
Have you ever thought that about anyone you know? Or maybe wanted to say something like that right to their face? Come on, be honest. Have you ever come across a “You’re such a better mom than me” mom? Do you have that one friend/acquaintance that constantly tells you you’re such an inspiration and that they wish they could be just like you but never does anything about it? Honestly, I think we all do. I also think at times we all have a bit of that mom in us.
We all have our hang-ups, I really think that’s just par for the course. We’ve all got something that at one time or another was put on the back burner for one reason or another and it’s just a matter of time before we get around to it. I myself am pretty guilty of that. I’ve got about five projects in the works, a career diploma in Desktop Publishing I’m doing nothing with, and a long list of “get around to its”. I even have a ton of long term goals but in all honesty, they’re just long term because I haven’t gotten around to them yet. I’d really like to blame it all on being a mom but I don’t think that’s really the reason. I think that it’s just human nature to dream big but at times be too scared to accomplish big too. Well that and the fact that it also seems to be human nature to gain sympathy from friends by complaining about the things we “can’t” change.
The other part of the “You’re such a better mom than me” syndrome is one that actually drives me crazy. I’m really hoping I don’t do it although I probably do. I’m talking about the mom who constantly tells you how much better of a parent you are. The one that tells you things like “your kids eat so much better than mine and you don’t give them McDonalds!” or “wow, I can’t believe your kids don’t watch tv all day, I wish I didn’t let mine!” or even “I wish I read to little Tommy every night like you read to your kids”. Now maybe it’s just me, but anytime I’ve heard things like this I’ve actually wanted to strangle the mom. Seriously! If you think what I’m doing is SOOOO much better than what you’re doing then why aren’t you changing things up a bit? If you want to read to little Tommy before bed then make it happen! If you want your four year old to stop eating McDonalds then for pete’s sake stop taking him to McDonalds!!
Now sure, I understand that life is busy/hard/crazy at times and that it can be overwhelming to make a change but it’s not impossible. I just don’t understand the parents that apparently think what they’re doing is “wrong” but do nothing to change it and just tell all of their friends about it instead. I’ve heard the words “I’m so busy, there’s just no time!” and “I need things to be convenient!” so many times. But honestly, who was it that came up with the idea that kids and life are supposed to be convenient?? Sure, it’s easier to swing by the drive through to pick up dinner, but is it really easier when the kids are complaining of tummy ache or bouncing off the walls because they drank an entire soda? Is it really that much harder to take 15 minutes and toss something in the slow cooker? Instead of fighting against time, we need to start working with it! It’s time to be honest with ourselves and stop making excuses. It’s time to realize that the 15 minutes extra you spent on Facebook this morning could have been spent cutting up some veg to throw in your lunch instead of grabbing that bag of chips on your way out the door.
So I know that change is hard. I know that change is scary. But like I said, it’s not impossible! If you really want to you can make major changes in your life in a fairly short time! So I want to propose a challenge. It doesn’t have to be a hard one, start small if you want to. I want to challenge you all to tackle that one thing you see all of your friends doing better than you.
Are you always telling a friend of yours that you wish you ate as healthy as they did? Then ask them for a recipe and designate one night to make a new healthier meal.
Do you miss putting on a little makeup in the morning and feel like you’ve been neglecting yourself (not to mention that one friend who always seems to be put together! How does she have the time??) Well next time you’re out shopping for milk just swing by the cosmetics and pick yourself up a mascara and a lip gloss. That 10-15 bucks and the 3 minutes it will take you to put it on in the morning will really make a difference!
What about that friend who always seems to have time to work out? There’s no way you can squeeze in any exercise with your busy schedule right? Wrong!! Remember, you don’t have to run a marathon straight away, just start small! Have a laptop? Set it up by the treadmill and check out hulu.com for that episode of Grey’s you were planning to watch. Don’t have a treadmill at home? Fight the urge to skip the commercials and spend them doing some sit ups, squats, or lunges. Do that and over the course of a one hour show you’ve bagged a 20 minute workout. Now of course this isn’t as good as doing it all at once but it’s something! It’s a start! Before you know it you’ll be lunging your way through an entire episode.
What about that book you’ve been meaning to read? Pick up a copy for a friend and have them read it with you. Hearing all about how good it gets in the middle is more than enough motivation to carve out some time for yourself and to enjoy a good read!
Now I know what some of you might be thinking. It’s too hard, I’m busy with school/work/kids/etc. You’re probably thinking that it’s the holidays and it’s impossible to start a new routine now, you’ll just wait for the new year. Well people, I say screw New Years! Those resolutions never work, they just set you up for failure and seriously, if you can knock out a new challenge during the holidays, you can do anything! A wise friend once told me that you’re brain automatically goes into survival mode and tells you to slow down when things get tough. She said that you just need to ignore that voice and push through and you’ll be amazed at what you can do! Now sure, she happened to be talking about an intense cardio session but I seriously think you can apply that to any challenge in life! So stop with the excuses. Just do something already! And make sure you’re never again going to be the “you’re such a better mom than me” mom!
By the way, I’m actually practicing what I preach! I’ve been talking about wanting to get in shape for a very long time now and I’m actually going to do it! It’s hard and I've already caught myself making excuses, and it's been less than a week! But, I can see myself getting hooked, it feels so great to do something active! I’m doing a Jillian Michaels yoga dvd when I find the time. It’s not easy finding time, I actually gave up 30 minutes of relaxing time while my daughter napped to do it. I never thought I would but it felt great knowing I didn’t just sit on the couch eating bon bons. Yesterday I did 25 minutes on the elliptical when I was sure I’d struggle to get 10! What an empowering feeling knowing I can actually do it! I made myself a playlist of the music I never get the chance to listen to anymore, like things that my husband hates or that aren’t appropriate for a two year olds ears. It was great motivation to stay on longer and hear just one more awesome song! If I can do it, you can too!
So pick a goal and start small, you’ll be amazed at what you can do!