The word family isn’t just about who you are related to by blood, it’s who comes into your life and never leaves your side. Arguably, it’s the people who are there for each other no matter what, who love and support each other unconditionally. The people who, when you are with each other, feels like home. A sense of safety, security. Don’t waste your time and energy for people who don’t give their time and energy in return. If there are people in your life causing you pain, turmoil and unnecessary stress, then you have to ask yourself if it’s really worthy of you and your time. People come and go, some may not always be right there with you all the time, but it’s about who is present in your life adding value, happiness and love. Even if you’re just at the end of a message or phone call to each other, it’s people who are there for you in your time of need and who you can be there for in return. For many people, even they’re own family let them down and cause them this anguish. Just because your family are joined by blood it doesn’t mean that other people can’t be just as important to you. In some cases, it’s the people who aren’t ‘family’ that show more love and support than those who are. That’s what determines the true meaning of family. Don’t be afraid to cut the poison out of your life. Know your worth, you know who your true friends are and who will be there no matter what. You can’t people please and bend over backwards causing yourself grief for others who wouldn’t do the same. The people who love you, support you, guide you and have your back through thick and thin are the valuable ones. I’m very grateful and lucky that I happen to be surrounded by a loving family and friends. But not everyone has that. Not everyone can rely on their family. You don’t need to justify yourself or your actions to anyone, if it’s causing you heartache and pain, you don’t need it in your life. Put yourself first. Ditch the drama.
You are not defined by anyone else’s journey or success. You are not defined by your trips and falls. Don’t compare yourself to other people’s journeys or lives. Everyone is unique and different. We all have different situation, circumstances and opinions and ways of doing things. It doesn’t make us any less important or capable that anyone else. It doesn’t mean we have failed. The problem with social media these days is, it’s become people’s best friend but worst enemy. We follow people on instagram because we are inspired and admired by them and are attracted to the pictures we see, hence why we follow, but then it can start to get obsessive and a lot of us get really down about ourselves and let it get to us. Some people are deflated and frustrated because they wish they looked like these people they follow or had their house or their lifestyle or that particular car or wished they were fitter/thinner or whatever it may be. It’s like a weird envy of what we see or perceive on social media. It doesn’t do us any good emotionally or mentally sometimes. It’s all about perspective. Social media only shows you some of the story. For the most part, only the good stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not judging, it’s lovely to see how positive and happy people are and what ever people post or make their profiles look like, is up to them but just remember it may not be 100% accurate 100% of the time. It may not show you that persons struggle, the pain, tears, inner demons these people may face. A study has come out recently questioning whether the rise in mental health over the past decade is because of the increase in social media use and how long we spend following others. How much time do we spend on social media being envious of other people’s lives? Like everything, it has it’s good and bad, as I said, for some, it’s motivating, inspiring and enlightening and is an amazing way of connecting to people all over the world with like minded interests and things in common. But for others it can be a daily reminder that they aren’t where they’d like to be or that they aren’t good enough or won’t achieve the same goals or that their lives aren’t as fruitful or exciting as others. But again I stress that nobody’s life is 100% perfect, it’s not sunshine and rainbows all the time. So please don’t compare your life and circumstances with others. Look into your heart, your life and what you are blessed with, start each day being thankful and grateful for what you do have. Even if it’s small baby steps what good things have you achieved today? What have you done to make you feel proud? You probably don’t give yourself enough credit for half of what you achieve. However big or small. Believe in yourself. Know your worth. Learn to love who you are. Accept you for you. You are enough.
Sometimes it’s ok to put yourself in the spotlight and put yourself first. Life gets so busy and we rush around so much, often feeling like there isn’t enough hours in the day. Don’t over commit, if you need to say no for you then that’s your decision, you don’t need to justify yourself. It’s ok to want time to yourself, to relax, to recharge. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Take time whenever you can to look after yourself and rest. I know it’s far easier said than done, especially being a parent. It’s also ok to have bad days, days where you’re fed up, exhausted, frustrated. But just know that it’s just 1 bad day and write it off, draw a line in the sand and start again the next day. I spend a lot of time working on my mindset and being grateful for all that I have and keeping positive however it doesn’t mean I don’t get bad days. But It’s how I refocus and rewire my mind to start again, to know that my bad days are just rare moments in amongst a million good ones. Even if my depression and anxiety does creep in and take hold, I know it won’t last forever, it’s not completely hopeless and eventually it will pass. Sometimes it’s easy to get dragged down thinking the bad times will last forever but they don’t. Just remember challenges only make us stronger and we can learn from them. Be proud of who you are and where you’ve come. It’s ok to need a little help, it’s ok to feel like you can’t do everything on your own. You’re not superhuman. A wonderful quote- “You can do anything my dear, but not everything” But only you have the power, only you are the only one who can get you to where you want to be. Don’t compare yourself to others. Believe in yourself, look after yourself, love yourself.
Begin each new day as a fresh start, a chance to start again and draw a line in the sand. Look in the mirror, take a deep breath and say “today is going to be a good day, today is going to be better, today something good will happen.” I totally believe in the power of positivity. Don’t get me wrong, some days are hard and it’s difficult to think positively all the time but it helps to start the day in this positive way. Or at least not start negatively. My routine is important to me as it helps me focus and feel better. I exercise in the morning and have good breakfast to fuel my body and mind. But of course I’ve had days where I want to shut myself away. The last couple of days have been like this, where I can’t focus and feel out of control. I feel tense and totally unable to feel relaxed or calm. The sheer sense of panic, dread, fear. I have to do my mindset activities and get myself up and out. Lately I have struggled and found things hard. But it does help me to get outside and breath in my surroundings. This beautiful weather we’ve recently had certainly helped. Think of 5 things everyday that you’re grateful for, that your blessed with. 5 things that make you happy. Do this every day. You have the power to achieve anything. You are unique and stronger than you know. It’s ok to ask for help or to need support. You are not alone.
Do you ever feel stuck in a rut? Ever feel like sometimes all of your motivation goes? Do you wake up thinking you just can’t deal with the day and you’d rather shut yourself away? Do you have trouble sleeping or find that you wake up a lot and your mind is sooooo active at 3am?! Over thinking over analysing or thinking about really weird and stupid things that have no relevance at that moment when all you want is to sleep?! Why does your brain do that?! So annoying isn’t it! We all probably get times where this happens or you’re stuck in a rut and you lose your ‘get up & go’ but It’s normal. It’s ok to lose direction or go off the path sometimes. But it’s how you refocus and get back to moving forwards. We all need a little motivational boost sometimes. What ever is holding you back or making you lose focus or motivation just know these simple things:
*Everybody cries, everybody hurts (wise words REM 😜)
*Don’t compare yourself to others.
*Everyone moves at different speeds and does things in different ways and stages. We are all unique.
*Everyone has bad days.
*Everyone feels crap or feels they’ve made a wrong decision at some point.
*No one is perfect. We all make mistakes.
*Don’t dwell on the past or the negative. Learn from it.
*The people who really love and care about you will be there no matter what, even on your bad days & when you’re feeling down.
*You can’t please everyone, just be yourself.
*The ones who matter will be there.
*Never chase someone for love, attention or affection, if it’s not given freely it’s not worth having.
*Be grateful and thankful for what you have.
*You can’t control everything.
*Have faith and trust that everything will work out.
*Hope is a liar that walks blindly through the fire, Faith jumps eyes wide open over the flames
*Believe in yourself.
You have more power and strength in you than you know.
Learn to love who you are, there is only 1 you.
How often do you find yourself struggling with just the day to day? It’s nothing to be ashamed about. It’s not necessarily that you find things a struggle every day, just sometimes, or now and then, but never-the-less, a struggle. I think as parents, we hate to admit it. We don’t want to seem like we can’t cope. But that’s not what makes a bad parent. It doesn’t make you an unfit parent. It’s what makes us normal and human. Not one child is the same and not one situation is the same. Everybody deals with things differently. Some days can be amazing, wonderful and happy. Other days are really testing and you don’t feel you’ve achieved anything. The baby has cried all day and you feel useless.
As wonderful and amazing as it is to be blessed with a child and to become a parent, there is no question that sometimes it’s really tough. Test’s you to your limits. It’s the sleepless nights, the hours of swaying, shushing, rocking, cradling, putting down, picking back up, driving round for hours or pushing in the pram to get to sleep, it’s the tiredness, the not settling, the baby who won’t feed/latch on, food intolerances, feeding issues, weening dramas, tantrums, the colic, the crying that seems to never stop some days. The days when you can’t get anything done, when you haven’t managed to get out of your pyjamas or had a shower, hardly had anything to eat yourself and can’t remember the last time you drank a HOT drink. The piles of washing, drying, ironing, the tidying, cleaning, cooking, preparing that seems never ending. When everything makes you doubt yourself as mother and feel like everything you’re doing is wrong. When you can’t seem to settle them sometimes, no matter how hard you try, and it feels like they are crying/screaming AT you. How, in the madness of those days where you’re exhausted beyond all comprehension, have no make-up on, your hair looks like a you’ve been dragged through a hedge, you’re up to your elbows changing a mammoth crappy nappy for the 3rd time in an hour, to then pick them up for a cuddle when they are sick all down your top that you’ve only just put on after getting spilt coffee and half eaten toast down the last one, the door goes and it’s the postman with a parcel that you have to sign for, so you put your baby down, to which he/she screams it’s head off as he/she doesn’t want to be left for 0.1 of a millisecond and the postman just looks at your current state and delicately says ‘having a rough morning love?’ It’s here in these moments when you think how some people seem to gracefully prance and twirl through motherhood so effortlessly and beautifully and yet here you are battling through every hour like a mad person looking like utter road kill. If you are one of these like me, trust me, it gets easier, you do eventually figure it out and get your shit together. Don’t ever feel down hearted or doubt your ability as a parent. There’s no rule book, there’s no real ‘how to guide’ everydayis a learning curve and you will always be thrown new things to deal with.
You also have your multitude of emotions to deal with, that make you feel parallel opposites most of the time. It’s perfectly normal to feel overwhelmed, emotional, happy and sad all at the same time. Sometimes you’ll cry for no apparent reason. But the important thing is that it’s ok and you’re not mad or crazy. It’s so important to talk about how you’re feeling, and if you need help with anything, even if you feel like you want to try and deal with everything on your own, YOU ARE NOT A SUPERHERO! Nobody expects you to be. Just because you feel emotional, drained, exhausted, like you have to manage everything but can’t- this doesn’t make you a bad parent or a failure!! You are doing an amazing job whether you believe it or not.
You have to look after yourself. If you aren’t functioning properly then you will suffer. Happy mummy, happy baby.Don’t ever compare yourself to others. Don’t let people’s opinions get to you. It doesn’t matter what other people think. People will always judge, but all that matters is you, your family and what you think is best.
For all you parents, whichever stage you’re at, whatever ups and downs, through the good and bad, you can do this. I believe in you. You’re doing great.