Why Moms Are So Hard on Themselves
“Enjoy every moment.” “It goes so fast.” Well, when I'm facing the pressures I place and possibly the current culture places on me to be an attentive, loving, understanding, nurturing mother; a beacon at school activities and in the learning arena; to cook organic, locally grown, everything-free meals; and to support my kids financially and educationally by running a small business and earning enough to live in our city, it doesn’t always seem to go that fast (although it’s certainly been the greatest adventure of my life).
How Yoga Can Help
How can we release these pressures when they seem to be built into the system? This is where the YOGA of yoga comes into play. The secret to slowing down, simplifying, non-harming, honesty, non-grasping, etc. is a daily practice. Many moms are convinced they don't have time for yoga or meditation, but for me it's imperative to make the time every day to return to yoga not only for my personal practice, but so that I may be a present, compassionate figure for my daughters. Some musts for me:
—Making time every day to sit in meditation for at least 11 minutes with pranayama. This helps me expand my view of myself and my situation so I can approach things more clearly.
—Taking a strong and grounded stance with slow, long breaths. This slows me down and connects me back to the ground, foundation, and strength I need in difficult situations.
—Making a list of all of my expectations of myself. This allows me to see how impossible this list is and become more honest about the time and attention I have to offer.
See also Mom-asana: Reserving Energy, or Making a Don't-Do List
—Communicating openly with those around me. This gives me the opportunity to ask for help when I need it.
—Looking into my children's eyes…really taking a moment to look, pause, breathe, and stop talking. This helps me be more present and stop thinking about my own agenda.
—Being playful. This helps me lighten it all up and laugh with my kids or other parents.
Want more tips like these? Sign up for our Yoga for Strong Moms online course featuring Janet Stone.