Are you a modern day mother?
The Challenges of Being a Modern-Day Mother
The modern-day mother juggles work, study, managing the family's finances, caring for the house, and raising happy and healthy children. It's no wonder modern-day mothers feel pressure to "do it all"! Just because this is common, it doesn't make it easier or right.
With all these hats we must wear, where do mothers get support or learn to manage the heavy mental load?
How do we handle all the jobs, tasks, and to-do lists without overwhelming ourselves further by trying to carve out time to prioritise our mental health and well-being?
Defining the Modern Day Mother
Many mothers often work with multiple responsibilities while attending to family matters. This means that she is responsible for her career success and her home life. She must juggle both professional and personal tasks with grace and efficiency while maintaining emotional equilibrium. As a working mother, it's exhausting thinking about it all.
We're expected to mother like we don't work and work like we don't have kids.
Challenges Faced by Modern-Day Mothers
Modern-day mothers often face conflicting demands from their work and families. Trying to find a balance between providing for their families financially while also being present emotionally. This can be especially difficult if they have young children who require extra attention at home or if they have an intense workload at work.
Additionally, many modern-day mothers can struggle with guilt when they cannot attend to certain aspects of their lives, such as their physical health or social relationships, due to time constraints. It can also be difficult for them to find enough self-care time to manage stress effectively.
Managing Stress & Self-Care
The pressure and stress modern-day mothers feel to do well in life are enormous. As women are asked to take on a more significant role in the workplace and be expected to juggle family life and take care of children - it's not surprising that burnout can occur.
This pressure doesn't just come from external forces, but it is also self-imposed. As such high-pressure environments have become commonplace in the lives of so many, women often feel the need to strive for perfection at work while giving 100% at home. Unfortunately, this type of pressure can be highly detrimental to mental health, leading to agitation, anxiety and depression.
Mothers need more support when recognising when they need a break or seeking help, as burnout affects the mother and the whole family. There needs to be more awareness and space for us to recharge.
Feeling Overwhelmed by the Needs of Others
Being a high-performing mum can often be overwhelming, especially when the pressure of meeting the needs of others is presented at every turn. This pressure can lead to feeling overwhelmed by the constant needs of others and lead to negative impacts on well-being, such as difficulty sleeping, fatigue, low moods and anxiety.
To combat this pressure and resulting stress, it's essential to practice self-care to ensure that you are mentally, physically and emotionally equipped to serve others healthily. That might mean taking regular breaks, spending time with those closest to you who nurture and encourage your well-being, or delegating tasks to manage time better. Ultimately, being a high-performing mother requires not only putting yourself first but also understanding that self-care is not a luxury but rather a crucial step towards successful parenting amidst the gruelling demands of modern life.
Loneliness and Isolation from Family and Friends
As a mother, you may feel pressure to not only be successful in your own life but also to provide for and nurture your children's needs. It can be challenging to manage such pressure while trying to perform at a high level in various facets of life. This pressure can lead to stress and impact the amount of joy and happiness you experience, affecting everything you are responsible for, including work, relationships, and other essential aspects of life. Finding ways to deal with these feelings of pressure is necessary to continue enjoying the positive aspects of parenting without feeling overwhelmed by its inherent demands.
Taking Time Away from Other Projects/Tasks to Focus on Self-Care
There are several ways that modern-day mothers can manage stress and prioritise self-care without sacrificing other important aspects of their lives. For example, it may be helpful for them to incorporate mindfulness practices into their daily routines, such as meditation or yoga, so that they can centre themselves mentally before tackling other more demanding tasks.
Suppose you feel that self-care takes hours and breeds more stress; start small and spend 5-10 minutes daily doing something you love. It could be something as simple as taking a long shower, eating a meal alone, or eating dark chocolate while reading a book.
Additionally, you need to set boundaries to ensure that you have enough time for rest throughout the week despite competing demands.
Finally, building a solid support system is essential to provide an outlet if ever needed during times of stress or overwhelm.
You will often hear me say build your own village. Your support network is unique to your needs. Your support can be made up of friends, paid services, meal deliveries and subscriptions. You need to do what makes your life easier to get through your days.
Challenges with Self-Care, Wellness Maintenance
Motherhood pressures every aspect of life—not just work and family but self-care. This pressure can manifest in the form of stress, both physical and emotional. Constantly putting others' needs above yours takes its toll. Speak to your partner or family about what is working and what can change. Communicate your needs before you feel you are going to have a breakdown.
Addressing the pressure and stress before it becomes overwhelming is vital to successful wellness maintenance for busy mums; creating a routine that provides time for self-care activities like exercise, meditation, journaling, and connecting with friends can help to alleviate stress while also building meaningful relationships.
YOUR STORY IS UNIQUE, AND SO ARE YOUR NEEDS
No two situations are alike, so mums should take the time to determine which activities fit best into their day-to-day lives without adding too much pressure and allow them to lead healthy lives.
If the idea of self-care adds more stress to your mental load, speak to a healthcare professional or book a consultation to discuss what brings you joy and how to fill your cup.
Keep in mind that wanting to do and have it all puts enormous pressure on yourself. Remember to use kind words and be gentle with yourself.