When I started this blog I had a goal. I wanted to be a fun, sarcastic, hanging on by a thread but thriving mom. I wanted to be that mom others wanted to read from.
As I look back at my posts a different mom shows through. A mom hanging on by a thread but NOT thriving. A mom who has lost her sarcasm and charm. A deflated mom.
I promised real, honest, messy motherhood. However I wanted to deliver it with wit and humor. Because if we don’t laugh… sometimes this job (as moms) makes us cry. But the truth is since starting this blog that’s not who I’ve been. And chances are it may not be who you are right now either.
You may be just as run down as I am. You may be nodding along reading my posts because this mom life has you loosing your wit and sanity too. Maybe like me you’re grieving. Maybe like me you’re overwhelmed. Maybe like me the thread you’re holding onto is thinning daily.
So…what do we exhausted and spread too thin moms do?
How do we cope with our grief and push away our guilt? How do we conquer down days and depression? How do we dig up our wit and start thriving again?
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OK you can get back up from laughing yourself off your chair…
Yes, I know balance is a foreign word to moms now days. Dare I say an impossible concept to understand. But it is essential! In order to be genuinely happy, happiness needs to be found in all the different areas of our lives. Areas that may involve kids but mainly areas that will not! Find balance within your happiness.
Studies show our wellness (happiness) can be looked at like a pie diagram. A graphical representation made up of 6-8 areas depending who you follow. If one (or more) areas are not equally fulfilled as the others your circle (pie) is not balanced. Your life is not balanced. Your happiness and well being is not balanced.
I have taken this idea one step further. When creating an image to illustrate this idea, of balance and equal parts working together, I came up with a flower. Each petal representing one of your happiness areas of wellness. A flower blooms together, as a whole, not one petal first or greater, leaving the rest behind.
Personally I focus on six areas for my “happiness flower”. Other studies show seven, others eight. In my life I blended occupational/ financial. You can separate if needed.
My wheel includes:
Intellectual- I take this area to mean happiness in my thinking and overall mindset. I strive to grow my ability to think effectively and happily. This may include clearing my workspace one week, or working on a blog post to clear my head. Reading parenting blogs or articles to better my understanding in my motherhood journey. Reading a book for fun to stay intellectually stimulated. Their are lots of ways to challenge this area and grow in it.
Emotional- This area is where I like to implement one of my “selfish motherhood” tasks weekly. I focus on me and my happiness at the core. This area is one of my lowest personally but a great one I value setting goals with. Writing down one action a week, in black and white, to take care of myself. Try it and you will see your emotional score grow!
Social- I am a very introverted person. This category is like pulling teeth for me to work on. However, by reaching out with my blog and Instagram I have been able to branch out of my stay at home mom/ motherhood isolation bubble while staying in the safe comforts of my bubble. This group’s goals will be different depending on your social comfort level. A weekly girls night for drinks would grow one persons score beautifully. For me it would cause too much anxiety, therefor lowering my score more than helping. Find a social outlet that helps you feel heard, loved, and fufilled.
Spiritual- I have been reading The ONE Year Bible for over 18 months. When I started my balanced happiness journey I had one month worth of reading left. Less than 30 days of scriptures, yet I had been working on them for over 9 months! I hated how I let my to-dos get higher priority than my time in the Word. Every week now I “force” myself to lean on God and dive into his Word. This is also the area I lean on the most for grace (naturally). In my faith I am able to let go of guilt- easier said than done. I understand and proclaim that I am not alone in my parenting journey. That there is a God who holds all the power and who will not let me fail. He give me grace and strength and with that I am raising my tribe of crazies a little easier. Another idea is to find a motherhood devotional or a little something every week, or day, you can find that grace and peace to tackle motherhood.
Physical- Even though I’m already 9 months post-partum somedays I feel as if I look 1 WEEK! This area is my personal second lowest. It is the one that often the goals go unmet. But writing goals helps keep us accountable. And this week I lowered my goal and met it. Start small mommas! When we achieve something (no matter how significant) we feel capable. When we feel capable we strive to achieve more. We can grow. Cheesy, cliche, but so true. Set a goal to walk at lunch time, or take a family walk after dinner. Try to join that group fitness class, or do some at home workouts with your kids!
Occupational/ Financial- This will look different depending on if you’re a working mom, stay at home mom who handles the bills, a mom who doesn’t touch family finances, or any other senecio. It has always been my job as a stay at home mom to run our finances. My husband busts ass to make the money, and it’s my job to save and budget that money. For this happiness area, I set goals for saving our families money, earning side income (through my Etsy shop or writing on this blog), or as of late starting my own part time job outside the house too. If you don’t work or handle finances how can you improve your happiness score? By answering this question, what will make you feel more in tune with your family finances? Make a goal to talk with your spouse about the family budget. Maybe start your own side hustle to feel like a contributor. Start cutting coupons and surprise your spouse when the bills decrease!
In order to create effective goals it is important to give yourself a baseline. Here is a free printable worksheet to examine your happiness balance (or unbalance).
Shade in the level (score) you feel your happiness is at in each area (petal).
Now, this is not a blog about “level ten living”. I am NOT telling you to achieve greatness and perfection in every area of your life. Perfection in motherhood is impossible… but balance is possible and necessary. When you strive towards balance you can once again become your happy mom self.
On your flower, what areas are lower (or less bloomed)? What parts of your life can you improve in? Remember they will not all be 10… but they should be equal to one another. It’s not until you are balanced that you can start to grow to higher happiness as a whole, eventually striving for greater scores overall.
So you have evaluated your happiness in all areas of your life. You have set goals to create balance between those areas. What’s next?
Go do! Everything in life takes work. And your mental health and happiness is no exception. It takes a lot of doing and work. Set your goals every week to maintain and/or increase happiness in each area of your life. You may not notice the change from week to week. You may still feel unbalanced and like a hot mess (because well… motherhood is a hot mess!). But when you look back on the whole in a month or two, you will notice. As a whole, looking at the big picture by examining each petal… you will be more balance and more happy.
For more organizing help here are some FREE printables! Click the links below:
Any Happy Planner mommas? Buy my sidebar goal setting stickers below! Also includes “goal completed” stickers to track your awesomeness!
Happy Planner Sidebar Goal Setting + Goal Completed Printable Stickers
Full sheet printable stickers made to fit The Happy Planner. Included on the page is 5 weekly side bar goal setter and 2 weeks worth of “goal completed” stickers per happiness area!
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