I love writing New Year’s resolutions. It’s the time of year where I really get to stop and take stock of my life: where I’ve been for the last year and where I’m heading in the new year ahead. 2013 was a transformative year for me: I went from wife to mom and no matter what, from 2013 onward, I will always be a mom. As we forge ahead into 2014, my role as a mother will forever factor into the way I live my life. So it only makes sense that being a mom shapes how I think about creating goals and resolutions for myself from here on out.
I could just stick to the same old New Year’s goals that everyone has: lose weight, eat better, yadda yadda. But motherhood has put even the most mundane of New Year’s resolutions into a whole new light. Here are my new New Year’s resolutions – my goals with soul – for my life as a mom.
New Year's Goals with Soul
It’s really important to pay attention to how we talk to ourselves about ourselves. Even something as simple as writing New Year’s resolutions can reveal a lot about how you view yourself, and if you learn to talk kindly to yourself about yourself, you’ll find you’re bound to take a more positive approach on life in general.
Could I stand to lose some weight? My doctor and jeans size says yes, yes I could. But with an infant, it’s not about trying to reach a beauty ideal; it’s more important to not only find but make time to get fit. I want to be as fit as I can – at whatever weight that might be – so I can be as strong as possible to take care of my son.
I don’t think I’ve ever eaten as much drive-through or take out as I have since becoming a mom. Is it convenient? Totally! Is it good for me? Probably not so much. Instead of trying to eat better, I need to eat well: less dining out and more cooking in.
Fact: parenting is stressful! This is hardly a surprise or a shock to any parent reading this. Sometimes yes, the stress results in really, really dumb fights about really, really dumb things. Solution? Making date nights with my husband a regular and frequent occurrence instead of a random rarity.
Own My Time
Judah is a remarkable child in that he sleeps a lot later compared to babies his age; he doesn’t usually wake until 7:30 or 8 some mornings. I take this opportunity to sleep in. Could I get up earlier? Yes. But it’s more important as a work-at-home mom that regardless of when I wake up, I make full use of my time to get as much work done as I can.
I really, really need to let go of the notion that I can have an infant and a clean house simultaneously. Will I live in a pigsty in 2014? Of course not! But I’m not going to force an expectation of white glove cleanliness and learn to roll with the clutter more easily than I do now.
So, confession: I am notoriously tardy. Now that I have an infant, I pretty much have to add an extra 45 minutes to any time I need to leave the house, easily. But sometimes I just need to be late if that means being present in the moment with my son; babyhood does not last long and I want to savor every second that I can.
Stress is an inevitable part of parenting. Instead of telling myself to just relax all the time, I can be more proactive about engaging in regular self-care, whether it’s meditation, a quick walk, or a monthly massage. There’s nothing selfish about taking care of yourself.
I could be the work-at-home SuperMom with the spotless house who makes dinner every night and runs off to her mom’s groups and playdates and baby yoga… and I could probably exhaust myself trying. Instead of trying to do it all, I’ll do my best for Judah, however little or much that means.
I don’t have to be The Best Mom – I just have to be the best mom I can be for Judah, and that’s what matters most.