“My mom is happy.” Wouldn’t you love your kids to say those words and have them be true? Here are some tips on how to be a happy mom.
Your children bring you joy–I’m sure of that. But the daily grind can be wearing and sometimes our emotions get frayed.
No one wants to be a stressed, irritable, or sad mom. You want your kids to have you at your best, to see how much you love them and how you take pleasure in being with them. If you want to know how to be a happy mother, try some of these ideas.
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When it comes to knowing how to be a happy mom, you need to stack the deck in your favor. Life is unexpected, but by planting some happiness-inducing habits into your day, you are guaranteed to have a reason to smile.
- Start your day with some “me” time. I know what you’re thinking, “Me time? What’s that?” Sure, maybe you can’t pull off thirty minutes of alone time, but you can probably find five by turning on the baby swing and setting your toddler up with his favorite toy or a special craft. Then head to your favorite spot.
- For those five minutes, center yourself. Put some relaxing music in your earbuds (not too loud, of course). Pray. Meditate. Read something inspirational. Look out the window and watch the wind rustle the leaves of the trees. Prepare to meet the day.
- Enjoy your favorite cup. Everyone deserves a few indulgences, and this should be one. Your first hot drink of the day should be something you really enjoy. Something you savor. I drink Happy Coffee because not only do I like the taste, but it boosts four hormones in the body associated with happiness.
- Turn up the music and dance. One wonderful thing about kids–they are game for anything. And dancing has a lot of benefits, not the least of which is that it is linked to boosting self-esteem, cutting anxiety, and improving well-being. So put on a kid-friendly tune you like, and have an in-house dance party.
Self-Care Makes for a Happy Mom
Taking care of yourself is instrumental in knowing how to be a happy mom. No one expects you to be a fifties housewife, vacuuming the house in full makeup and high heels! But you do need to take some time to care for your whole self–mind, body, and spirit.
- Streamline your beauty routine, but still have one. You probably don’t have time to blow out your hair anymore (heck, you may be struggling to wash it!), but you need to have a routine that works for you so you can feel better about your appearance. You can scroll back to basics during this season, but keep the essentials that make you feel like you. Wash your face. Swipe on some blush and mascara. Get your hair cut. Don’t forget that you matter.
- Stock your day with your faves. I already mentioned your morning cup of something sensational, but this extends beyond beverages. Ask yourself, “What are some parts of my routine that I really enjoy?” Make those precious sleeping hours savorable with a comfortable pillow. The goal is to say, “Ahhh…” when you slide into bed. What else sparks joy for you? A bouquet of flowers? Fresh herbs in your food? Fuzzy socks? Add a few niceties to your day. Look forward to the little things.
- Remember what you love and do that. Consider how to incorporate your children into the things you enjoy. If you are a nature buff, skip the playground one day and take a walk on a nature trail with your little ones. If you love art, check out a sidewalk art festival. Your activities don’t always have to be kid-centered for your children to enjoy them.
- Stretch and move in your day. I know you’re always moving, picking up this, putting away that. But all these jerky movements can leave your muscles tight. Introduce some stretching or yoga into your day. Include your kids! This is guaranteed to bring some calm and happy into your day. (In our Facebook group we have a Free Beginners Sunday Sunshine Yoga Class that you can join! We’d love to have you whether you’ve never practiced or have been practicing yoga for years! Everyone is welcome!)
- Eat some mood-boosting foods. Yes! There are foods that help improve your mood when you eat them. You can try adding these to your diet: salmon, dark chocolate (did somebody say chocolate?), oats, bananas, berries, nuts, and–wait for it–coffee!
Being a Happy Mom Doesn’t Mean You’re ALWAYS Happy
You are not a robot. You can’t set a dial to “happy” and stay there 100% of the time. If you get a flat tire, if a close friend moves away or grows distant, if your baby has colic, these are all times when you may not be happy. No one expects you to be.
You don’t need to plaster a smile to your face to be a happy mom. Kids are little, but they are smart and sensitive. It is okay to be real with them. They need to know there are ups and downs in life, and it is healthy to react to those appropriately.
Keep adjusting your perspective. Ask yourself if what you’re facing is a big deal or a small deal. If it is a small deal, try to shrug it off. Refocus yourself on something positive (take a walk, have a cup of coffee, snuggle on the couch with your little ones and read a book, etc.).
If you’re facing a big deal, find a way to cope. Talk to someone: a friend, a spiritual leader, a counselor, a doctor. Get help. Don’t struggle alone.
Life has its ups and downs, but it does have a lot of ups. You have some ups in your house right now, and they love you. That alone is a reason to be happy.
If you want happiness to be your hallmark, it means taking a series of small steps. They may seem insignificant, but these small steps can grow your happiness by leaps and bounds.