Children Need The Simplest Things To Feel Content & Loved. Here Are Five Ways To Make You A Better Mama & Them Happier – It’s A Win/Win!
Motherhood isn’t easy – and every time we think we’ve got the whole thing sussed, something new throws us off course and we feel like we’re failing (sound familiar?!). But one thing’s for sure, our children aren’t as complicated as we think them to be and they don’t need the kinds of frills we’re led to believe they do. Fun after-school timetables, busy weekend schedules, the latest toys and gadgets, yeah they’re great but there are simpler ways to be a good mama, banish that guilt (hooray!) and make sure that your little people feel happy and secure.
Say ‘I Love You’
Sounds obvious but how many times a day do you tell your children that you love them? Do it often but do it with meaning – i.e not just yelling it as they’re dragging their bag into school! Before bed, first thing in the morning, ‘just because’, give them a hug and say those magic words, mamas.
A Calm End To Each Day
I’m talking bedtime. Sometimes (most times), this is the part of the day when we just want them to GO TO SLEEP so that we can get that much needed time to ourselves/our laptops/all the million other things. But honestly, even when you want to rush through the whole thing, an extra five minutes to allow them to chat about their day or get that extra story/chapter in is all it takes for a happy send off to the land of nod.
Make time for you and time for them
Taking phone calls, replying to WhatsApp, making tea and trying to do whatever it is that your kiddo needs now, now, NOW – yeah it just doesn’t work, mamas. Dedicate a few minutes each day to them, put your phone away and don’t allow for interruptions (because they can all wait, honestly). Whether you’re grabbing an ice-cream together or talking about their day at school – just a few minutes (we’ve all got five to spare) is all it takes. And same goes for you, mama. Take the time to do what you need and want to do so that you feel like you’ve had some headspace – you can’t pour from an empty cup! Go out for coffee, a run (a slow jog…ok a walk..), get a mani or pedi – whatever it is that you love to do, just do it. You’ll be happier and your kids will be too.
Try Not To Yell
I know, it’s hard. When you’re having a bad day and the kids are acting up it can be easy to let loose – we all do it. The thing here is to come up with a little mantra to say to yourself every time you feel that crazy mama voice bubbling to the surface. For me, it’s something I read a little while ago ‘speak to your children in the kindest way, as if they are the wisest, kindest, most beautiful and magical humans on earth, for what they believe is what they will become’. It doesn’t always work, I have days – and they have moments – where yelling is required! But it’s definitely taken the edge off the constant battling. And if you do yell, don’t feel guilty about it, just forgive yourself, apologise to them and move on.
No you don’t have to sit on the carpet for hours pretending to be in a train or whatever else it is they want you to get involved in. But you do have to show your fun side every now and then! Chase them up to their bath (in a non-scary way!), read stories with silly voices, do that crazy dance thing you used to do to make your husband or friends laugh, let them cover your cheeks in blusher and try it out themselves, ask them about the lego contraption they’ve built and get (pretend) excited about it – and if they ask you to swim with them rather than read your book on the side then do it, just once, they’ll be so happy you did.