5 Ways to Reduce Your Stress As a Mom

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Being a mom can feel like you are doing 20 jobs without actually making money (unless you are a working mom, then at least one of your jobs makes some dough!). We all know the benefits of raising and nurturing our kids and most of us wouldn’t give that up for the world. But, between the diapers, endless laundry, outings, naps, tantrums, sticky door handles, grocery shopping and all the other daily tasks and activities, there’s little to no time for self care.

Instead of getting a mani/pedi or a massage (which at least for me is not in our budget), some of the best things we can do for ourselves is find ways to make our daily life more efficient and less stressful. Below are 5 things you can do to make your life easier as a mom:

1) Morning and Nightly Routine

This sounds like a no brainer but give it some thought. What is one of the most stressful things you do every day? Can you prepare some of the task ahead of time to make it easier on you the next day? For example, if laundry makes you twitch from the ongoing onslaught (like me), try doing one load a day. Personally, I like to set a load to wash every night and then transfer it as soon as I get up in the morning as a part of my morning routine (usually with a batch to fold in the dryer). Laundry is the bane of my existence (even higher than doing the constant dishes from a family of 4 and 3 furry family members).

The biggest thing you should do for yourself is to take a shower every day in your morning or evening routine. I don’t know about you, but after I have had a shower and feel clean I’m more ready and able to tackle my day with the kids. Don’t get me wrong, I am terrible at keeping this in my routine with so many things to do. But I am getting better about it! I make sure to take a shower at least every other day.

The items in your routines don’t have to be tasks for every day. For example, I have to do the cat and bunny litters twice a week. So I know which mornings of the week I need to set aside some additional time to get these done. I make sure to do these in the morning (since I despise cleaning them) so the task isn’t weighing on my mind all day.

Regardless of what you want or need to do each morning and evening, discover ways to quickly and efficiently get things done (hopefully while the kids are asleep or occupied). Make a list of all the things you need to get done in a day with maybe a few hopeful items. Then, go through and figure out your biggest headaches and how you can possibly get them done in parts or without your kids needing something from you in the middle of your task.

2) Budget

This doesn’t sound like something that is easy, but it can be! Money is one of the top stressors everyone has in their lives. In order to relieve some of that stress, all we need to do is create a simple budget to have a clear understanding of what money we have to spend (and on what). I use a budget to help me determine what foods to eat every week (for my meal plan) and do a single trip to Costco at the beginning of the month to stock up on toilet paper, diapers, wipes and anything else we can get in bulk to last the month.

A budget can be as simple or as complicated as you want. Mine is fairly complicated after much trial and error on finding the right way for our family to track expenses against a budget. If you don’t know where to start, I’ve even created a simple and easy budget you can use here. It may or may not be what your family needs. Even just having a plan on how much to spend on groceries weekly (and hopefully you can shop once to make sure you stay within your budget) will help alleviate a ton of stress!

3) Decorate With Plants

Please note that I have been gifted silk plants for my review. All statements and opinions are my own and do not represent

Having plants in your home has been shown to increase happiness and improve your mood. I don’t know about you, but I have little or no green thumb (no matter how much I want to be a good plant owner). This is no joke. I had one super-hearty plant that lasted about 7 years before it met it’s end during our move to another home. Other than that, plants usually only last a few weeks in my house before my lack of watering leads to their demise.

I will be honest that I’m usually not a fan of fake plants and flowers. Most of them make me cringe and remind me of a different era. When thinking of fake plants, I imagine the plastic fruit my grandmother (still) keeps on her table and dentist offices full of fake trees collecting dust.

However, not only are the silk plants and flowers at realistic, but they add color and dimension to my space. Making your house feel like a home can be a daunting task, especially when you are drowning in toys and messes from your kid(s). Sure, nothing beats the real thing, but I’m delightfully surprised at the quality of the flowers I received.

We have tried many times to have orchids (my husband’s favorite plant). It never ended well. And I wanted some cheery color to contrast against our brown and grey walls. Between the green orchids and pink flowers I now own, my living space feels more welcoming (and I like looking at the room more).

4) Write Things Down

The act of physically writing things down can help keep your mind free of mental clutter. There are plenty of ways to do this and can be done for a lot of things in your life, like grocery lists, task/to do lists, schedule, diary/journaling (I prefer a Bullet Journal for this where I keep both my “work”/blog and family information and schedule) and anything else you can think of to put down on paper. In the middle of a busy day with kids (and day job if you have one), it’s so easy to forget a thought or task you need to do. So get a journal, a white board for the fridge, anything that you can use to get those worries and thoughts out of your mind and onto something you can reference later.

5) Ask For Help

There is some sort of unspoken rule that all moms need to be perfect, doing it all and asking for no favors. But life isn’t Instagram perfect with lens flares, soft and smiling faces and amazing lighting. There are times you will feel like a terrible parent, either from your own insecurities or the unthinking comments of others. It’s so easy to compare ourselves to people we think are great at this parenting gig. But each one of us has our own challenges.

First, figure out what you ARE good at as a parent and become GREAT at them. Focus on the positive as much as you can. And when you can’t seem to find the energy or time to do so, ask for help. Get a babysitter. Join a mom group. Vent to a friend or fellow mom. Just say something without worrying about how they will respond. Most of the time you will get the support and kind words that you need. If you don’t, maybe they aren’t the right person to be friends with. Surround yourself with as many people as possible who get what you are going through (even if they are merely online friends).

It’s hard to ask for help. Sometimes it can feel embarrassing or like you should be able to do it all on your own. As much as we want to be (and feel we are expected to be), we aren’t superheroes. I’ve actually found it is amazingly eye opening to support other moms, hearing my fellow parents aren’t Instagram perfect makes my own life feel more normal, like I’m not failing as a mom. So reach out when you need to and offer help to others. Holding in all your worries and needs is likely one of the worst things you can do for yourself and your children. Reduce your stress and just open up, accept help and make some friends. No matter how alone you feel at times, you are far from alone.

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