We work hard, we sacrifice, we give, and we love selflessly because we believe that’s what ‘good’ women do. We put ourselves last, pour every ounce of love and energy into our people, and never ask for anything in return. We are selfless...and we are exhausted.
We’ve been programmed for so long to put ourselves last that the idea of putting ourselves back on our own priority list feels strange, selfish even.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with being a little “selfish” from time to time, in fact, it’s required if you have a self (which you do). If we are ever going to get what we need, guilt-free, we must identify and eliminate the beliefs that keep us from it.
If we believe love looks like self-sacrifice, then there’s no way we’re going to stop sacrificing.
If we believe a good mom comes last, always, then, because we want to be good moms, we’ll come last, always.
If we believe the most flattering compliment a mother can receive is that she’s selfless, then we’ll be utterly selfless.
Our actions reveal our beliefs.
We may say we deserve to rest or admit it’s time to slow down, but if our actions don’t reflect our words, we don’t really believe it.
Until you truly believe good mothers ask for help, that it’s okay to come first from time to time, and that your wants and needs matter, you will never break free from the death grip of exhaustion.
Start identifying your beliefs. Write them down. Aim to articulate at least 10 beliefs you have around a mother’s role and what expectations you have of a “good mother.” Get them on paper. Look at them. And then look through them. Take them out one by one and examine each. Is this true? Where did I get this belief? Does a good mother always come last? Are there good mothers who don’t come last all the time? Could I be a good mother AND put myself first once and awhile?
When you take time to identify and evaluate your beliefs, you’ll probably find a lot of what you’ve come to see as truth is really just opinions, usually not even yours. Begin rewriting the beliefs to something more true, and then put them into action. Start living by your new rules. When momma’s happy, everybody’s happy.
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