6 Life-Saving Tips to Bring Calm to the Anxious Mom

by Apr 18, 2018mental health, MOM LIFE27 comments

 If you’re anything like me, your Pinterest feed is full of healthy, kid-friendly recipes, organizational checklists, and a bunch of posts on minimalism, mindfulness, and meditation.  As much as I want to be the effortlessly zen mom–she is just not me.  And I am not her.

Maybe you didn’t grow up with a zen mom.  Perhaps motherhood took you by surprise, and you are doing your best to adapt. 

Maybe, you are not the mom you thought you would be.  I’m here to tell you that it’s okay.  You’re not alone.  There are no perfect moms, trust me on this. We all need a little help in one way or another.  That is why they say it takes a village to raise a child.

 

MY IMAGINARY SUPER-MOM

So, you know how some of us had imaginary friends as kids?  Well, my imaginary friend eventually moved away when I grew up and started liking boys or whatever.  When I became a mom, I created a new imaginary character—the ideal mom—only she wasn’t really my friend.   

Whenever something would not go right, whenever there was a meltdown (the kids or myself), or disappointment, or a hurt or frustration—I would size myself up against this imaginary super-mom.  Did I do enough?  Was I patient enough?  Was I enough?

 Maybe your super-mom is an actual person in your life that you compare yourself to.  Whatever the case, focusing on your shortcomings every day does not help you improve.  It only weighs you down.

 

A WORD FOR THE ANXIOUS MOM

Here’s the thing.  There is always going to be something more to be done.   More cleaning to be done.  More healthy meals to make.  More friendships to cultivate.  More activities to sign up for.  More fun vacations to plan.  More games to play.  But, when is it enough?  At what point do we sit and enjoy the fruits of our labor?

 

 

3 REMINDERS FOR THE OVERWHELMED AND ANXIOUS MOM

 When you find yourself having a moment, or it’s just been one of those days–here are a few reminders for you:

1)  At the end of the day, you are doing the best you can–just like most everyone else.  Tomorrow is a new day and a fresh start.

2)   Your #1 priority is fulfilling your purpose, not the items on your to-do list.  God has a plan for your children, so you don’t have to worry about the future, which you can’t control anyway. As a mom, your investment into your kids is what matters most.  More than the housework, the homework, and everything else.

3)  If you are tired or just in need of a break, take time to fill your cup before trying to fill up everyone else.  Taking proper care of yourself is a sure-fire way to reduce stress and anxiety.

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    3 BEST PRACTICES FOR THE MOM WHO COULD USE A LITTLE CHILL IN HER LIFE

     

    Here are some of my favorite tools for keeping things in perspective so I can savor the imperfect moments rather than beat myself up over them.

     

     

     

    Prayer/meditation

     

    When the kids are driving me crazy, or things seems to be falling apart and my emotions are on the rise, I shut myself into my bedroom. Or the bathroom.  Or take a moment in the driver’s seat of my minivan—and pray.

     

    When I can’t quite form words, I know that God understands.  Sometimes I write my prayers out in a journal as letters to God.

     

    Meditation is a key part of my bedtime routine (when I follow it and am not up late blogging like a madwoman).  Meditation allows me to relax and focus on everything that went right during the day, and on the vibe I want to enter into the next day.

     

    When I meditate, I don’t simply empty my mind.  I also fill my mind with promises from God.  Knowing how much God loves me and cares for me brings more peace than anything else.  

     

    Here are 20 scriptures that will help bring calm to your soul as you read them and think about them throughout the day.

     

     

     

     

    Talking it out

     

    A trusted counselor or friend can be a great sounding board when you need to get your worries and fears out in the open.  When I hear my thoughts said out loud, it is easier for me to put things into proper perspective.

     

    If you’re not in the mood to talk, journaling can be very therapeutic.  Or if you haven’t already, you could start a blog and find a community of people who may be struggling with the same fears and worries.

     

     

     

     

    Reading

     

    I am a voracious reader.  I love to learn new things, and there are several books that have helped me on my journey toward authentically joyful motherhood.  I had to change my mindset, which meant letting go of the mom I wanted to be and embracing the woman I was meant to be. 

     

    Here are some books I’ve found to be endlessly helpful in understanding, managing, and overcoming anxiety.

     

     

     

     

    RELATED BOOKS ON ANXIETY:

     

     

    I hope you find these resources helpful.  How do you manage anxiety in motherhood?  Let me know in the comments!

    27 Comments

    1. Brit Strawbridge

      This is such a special and necessary post to read! I think we all feel this at some point in our lives & I think we all meet that imaginary super mom now & then. I believe self-care is so important for this reason exactly! thanks for sharing! I love the Be Still printable!

      Reply
    2. KJ

      This is such a great reminder to just live in the moment and do our best. Perfection is an illusion.

      Reply
    3. Veronika

      These ideas are awesome. I often have negative self talk about my writing, but I’m getting better at pushing through because writing down my experiences works wonders. Thanks for the post ❤️

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Hi Veronika! I can relate. I fought my way through writing this post. Keep pushing through! Thank you for reading.

        Reply
    4. Susie

      Thank you for sharing. For me, I have a puzzle type game on my phone, and whenever I need a time out, I pull it and play no more than three games. It takes me 5-10 minutes. Enough to calm down.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Susie, I love puzzles, especially word puzzles. Thank you for reading!

        Reply
    5. leah

      yes! i suffer as well and prayer and meditation helps me so much!

      Reply
    6. Jessie

      Thank you for this!!! I have anxiety and some days are worse than others and I feel like I’m going to have a breakdown. I will make sure to keep this handy. Such a great read.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Hi Jessie, so glad you found this helpful! Some days are so hard. Breaking the day up into sections helps at times… just get through morning, lunchtime, and the after dinner stretch. Thanks for reading!

        Reply
    7. Floby Villaralvo

      I love the way you mentioned about filling up our cup, we all need this. It is tiring but we need these kinds of affirmations to stay alive.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Yes, Floby, positive affirmation is everything! Words hold so much power. Thank you for reading!

        Reply
    8. Tara | I dream of simple

      This is a lovely post! I love to read in my down time. You shared some great suggestions to add to my list!

      Reply
    9. Megan Rowsey

      Oh man. This is what I needed today. After sitting in traffic because of a horrible accident, the kids got to school late. And once we got there, I realized they didn’t bring their backpacks, despite me reminding them. So I had to scramble and figure out lunches. It was a crappy morning. Trying to chose Joy like the printable says.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Wow, Megan, what a day! Choosing joy is much easier said than done, but you sound determined! Hope you found a few minutes for yourself today! Thank you for reading!

        Reply
    10. candy

      Anxious really gets started when they start to drive and leave home where you have no control over them. Teach them well.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Hi Candy, I have about 5/6 years until my oldest two are old enough to drive… my oldest daughter can’t wait. Trying to savor these moments! Thank you for reading!

        Reply
    11. Amanda

      Wonderful post. It is so uplifting and encouraging…and very zen!

      Reply
    12. Leigh Suznovich

      Oh I can so relate to this even not being a mother yet. Such a helpful post!

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Thank you for reading Leigh! Anxiety affects so many of us. Glad you found this helpful!

        Reply
    13. Sara

      I can so relate to the ‘theres always something more to be done’. I have to remind myself of this all the time. Thanks for the post!

      Reply
    14. Rose-Marie

      This is a great resource for all mothers of all stages, life changes as our kids grow and grow up. Reading helps me the most. With knowledge there comes power, the power to be informed and make better decisions and feel like you are in control more. Rose @ Our House of Love

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Hi Rose-Marie, with knowledge comes power.. I like that! Thanks for reading!

        Reply
    15. Shelley

      Anxious mom here! It’s so hard to take a minute when there’s so much on your plate. These ar great reminders.

      Reply
    16. Chelsae

      After the week I am having this is such a great reminder. I have recently written posts on the “perfect” mom. I used to always think it would be so easy to be a perfect mom but until I became one found out just how hard that is but also how I think each mom is perfect. Just in their own way.

      Reply
      • Kat Charles

        Hi Chelsae! Being a mom is soo not easy sometimes but you are so right–we are the perfect mom for our kids.

        Reply

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