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Every year I do it. I try to defy the odds and finally complete just one resolution.
But as the years have gone by, it isn’t getting any easier. In fact, it feels harder! Becoming a mom has not lowered the bar, and it’s clear that there are more than a few reasons that it’s harder for moms to actually complete their resolutions. So let’s talk about some of the top reasons moms have a harder time with resolutions than others.
How about you?
Super stoked about those big New Year’s resolutions you just made?
Don’t wanna be the one to blow the buzzkill horn, but let’s be real. Around 80-90% of resolutions fail. They are hard AF to uphold for most of the world, but for us moms, they are even harder.
But we don’t want you to fail, mama! We want you to crush it, and having the tools and info will help get you on that path to success.
So, let’s talk about three reasons why it’s so much harder for moms to keep resolutions, and what you can do to hack those stumbling blocks so you can actually keep your resolutions this year!
Problem: Multi-tasking and distractions.
The trope of moms not even being able to pee alone is 100% accurate. We even multitask our urination, probably opening a granola bar or some other ridiculois things asked of us by our overlords while we try to use the bathroom.
There is always constant distraction, which leads to the multi-tasking. At this very moment I am typing this into Evernote on my iPhone while my 3 year old sits in my lap and 11 Month old twins crawl around. I have just a few minutes before one of them starts fussing for snacks.
Beyond the fact that my time isn’t fully mine, it’s mostly theirs, there’s this other sneaky little devil called context switching that totally screws productivity. (http://www.apa.org/research/action/multitask.aspx) what is context switching? Basically, it is when you move from one task to another quickly or back and forth between multiple tasks. It takes your brain some time to catch up to the change so you won’t be performing at peak levels of productivity for some time. So if you are constantly multitasking and context switching, it’s like working with one hand behind your back.
All this multi-tasking and context switching makes it so hard for us to focus in on what we are trying to accomplish.
You get zeroed in on an important task for your goals, but keep getting pulled back out until you say “screw it,” and put it off another day. A day we all know never actually comes.
Solution: Focus. Sounds simple, but with all the things on our plate it can be difficult to chill the hell out for a sec and prioritize. So then we end up doing it all at once. But studies show that multi-tasking actually makes you less productive. Time to cut that out. Don’t freak out mama. I know this sounds like it’s not really all that doable, but just for a second imagine doing (gasp!) one thing at a time.
This will take prioritization, but you can do it.
This means no checking email while fixing breakfast. No chatting on the phone while paying the bills. When we are constantly having our attention pulled in a million directions,
Problem: Busy with #allthethings (we don’t have time).
You lay down in bed at the end of the night, perhaps you know you’ll only get an hour or two of sleep in before a baby cries for their first night feed. You close your eyes and you know that you are so tired and you were so busy today. You did it all, and yet you can’t really remember actually getting anything done!
Solution: Firstly, we need to ditch this idea that we don’t have time. We do. If something is important to us, we will find the time to make it happen. Have a resolution to get in shape? Maybe it is really out of reach to get a sitter to watch your kids three times a week to go to the gym, but you can absolutely throw up some YouTube yoga videos on your Amazon Firestick (my fav way to watch). Then there is what I consider the absolute best exercise for mamas, walking. Load the kids into the stroller or grab their bikes and go outside. It’s family time, exercise and a breath of fresh air all at once.
Next, carve out time in the “Fringe Hours.” I read this book years ago, and I am still obsessed with the concept. We tell ourselves over and over again that we don’t have time for the things that are important to us or light us up because we are busy, busy, and more busy. But how often are you in a period of hurry up and wait? Rushing to get to your child’s school for pickup but then wait for 5 minutes for them to come out? Keep your knitting project or book you’re reading handy. Use those 5 minutes to actually do something related to your resolution instead of just scrolling your Facebook feed.
Problem: We come last and have absolutely no self-care practice.
Do I need to explain? We all understand this right? Everyone comes before us.
Solution: it’s becoming ridiculous if I’m honest. We talk about self-care all the damn time, and yet so many of us treat it like a luxury. Why? Because a part of us doesn’t truly value ourselves and what we are bringing to the table for our families and ourselves. Think about it. You are either just not prioritizing yourself, or you are putting yourself last. Would you let a friend do that? No.
It’s time we became our own best friends. Held our own hands. How do you expect to reach a goal or complete your resolution when you consistently put your own needs and goals on the back burner?
I know, I know. You’re probably like me and think you should be able to handle it all, right? And the thing is, you can mama. You have the capacity to do and accomplish so much. But you can’t do it when you’re reserves are at zero.
I’m not going to sit here and pretend there won’t be times when things are really hard and you just need to put on your big girl panties and push through. But that’s why it is so critical that during the more calm moments in motherhood. Those precious days and weeks when all is well. Ya know, when there’s no teething or stomach bugs or growth spurts. During those times take time to refill your cup.