At some point in motherhood, burnout is going to happen. For most moms, it happens during those first few days after you leave the hospital with your baby. It begins with endless feedings and diaper changes that last throughout the night until you feel like you are moving in slow motion because of fatigue. I remember being so tired from nighttime wakings that I found myself falling asleep while talking to my husband on the phone because that's when life presented a quiet moment. Burnout happens so often today because moms are no longer multi-tasking, they are mega tasking -- which means doing way too much too often.
As a mom of three (ages 15 to 8), I find doing the following tricks helps me avoid doing too much and becoming overwhelmed.
1. Write down everything that you do for your family and include the small things. I was able to gain perspective about all the things I was doing daily to contribute to my family's well-being by writing down those things. It also gave me permission to rest.
Sometimes moms are unrealistic in our expectations of ourselves. We do too much, and most of the time we are unaware of how much we actually get done in 48 hours. Try it. The results will surprise you.
2. Give yourself a break. Literally. Schedule breaks into your day as a mom. It could be an exercise break, coffee/tea, journaling, meditation or something else that simply relaxes you. Get off the treadmill of life and relax.
3. Stop trying to seek balance in your every day and instead, focus on finding joy. Balance is such an unrealistic goal for moms. The truth is that most of our days will never be perfectly balanced, because no two days are exactly the same in motherhood. Sure, we have similar moving parts to each day, but the dynamics are different. I teach my mom-coaching clients to focus on fulfillment. Do something that you love each day with your spouse, yourself and your children. Moms that enjoy their lives are happier mothers. Get rid of expectations.
Check out my recent segment about avoiding "mommy burnout" on the show America Now where I bring "news that moms can really use" as The Mom Strategist™. I'd love to learn how you avoid burnout. Please share your tips with me.View the full segment at AmericaNowNews.com.