If "Mom" Were A Paid Profession... How Much Money Would You Have Earned in 2018?

If “Mom” Were a Paid Profession… How Much $$$ Would YOU Have Made In 2018?

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This post may contain advertisements and/or links for products and services that I value. I offer recommendations to products and/or services that I find helpful in my own life as a mom. I may receive a commission based on viewer purchases or interactions with these ads. You will NOT be charged any extra money. All prices will stay the same for you whether your purchase items/services through links found on this site or not! 

Moms, you have the hardest and the lowest paying job in the world. You are NEVER off the clock, you get no holidays off or paid vacation time, none of the traditional working benefits, no HR department to back you up, no handbook.

And you do it all for $0 per hour, $0 per year.

But what if you did get paid for everything you do?

What would that paycheck look like?

To find out, let’s assess these 13 “jobs” that all fall into the daily life of a mom and how much those careers pay.

(I used salary.com for all of my data unless otherwise specified)

Comment Below- How much money would be “worth it” to you for all the work you do as a mom if you were considering making “mom” your chosen career?

1) Nurse

Moms are the nurse of the family. We have to know how to diagnose common illnesses, what remedies to try, how to administer medication, and how to have great bedside manner with our little patients.

Besides all that, we are constantly on call for the job of nurse. If our child is sick at 2am, we’re out of bed taking care of him. If our kid is throwing up at school, we leave our day jobs to go pick her up.

How much do nurses earn?

There is quite a range. Pediatric nurse practitioners also work specifically with children. The average salary for entry level pediatric nurse practitioners is $102,545.

On the other end of the spectrum, a school nurse (who also specializes in working with children) makes an average of $49, 088.

2) Chef

person cutting vegetables with knife

Moms are chefs at home. They are the primary meal planner- in charge of creating a menu, taking inventory of what food is available, purchasing any necessary ingredients, preparing the food, and making good use of the leftovers.

It could be argued that parents also do the job of Server ($27,308) and Nutritionist ($60,467), but just to be conservative we’ll stick with chef.

But for simplicity sake, we’ll stick with chef. The average chef earns $45,396 per year.

3) Chauffeur

How much driving do you think a parent does every day? It’s a ton! Between all the different lessons and activities our kids are involved in (sports, music, dance, gymnastics, church, clubs, student council, etc.) not to mention just getting to school, I feel like I’m living out of the car.

There are days that we pack dinner to eat on the go just because we know there isn’t going to be time to drive home and eat between the kids’ different appointments. Moms are definitely chauffeurs.

The average chauffeur earns $33,417 per year.

4) Mediator/Judge

brown wooden gavel

Moms and Dads are constantly helping their children solve problems. This could be problems between you and the child, problems between two of your children, or problems between a child and their friends.

There are times when parents do the job of a judge- which is to listen to both cases, review the rules of the family, and make a decision about who was right and who was wrong. This almost always comes with administering some sort of punishment to the guilty party. It’s not a pleasant job.

Judges earn a whopping $162,653 per year! And they deserve every penny. Being a judge is rough.

Mediators are a little different.

Interestingly, they are paid less than a judge although mediating in a family can be more complex and involved than judging in a family.

Mediation involves listening to both sides using reflective listening techniques and guiding a conversation between the two parties to help them come to a reasonable solution on their own. Rather than judging where you are the final say, in mediation the goal is to have both parties agree on a plan of action. This is especially difficult when dealing with two parties who are angry with each other, and sometimes angry with you.

Mediators are paid an average of $64,174 annually.

(https://www.indeed.com/salaries/Mediator-Salaries)

5) Bookkeeper/Accountant

Parents have a lot of behind the scenes work to make a home run smoothly and effectively.

One important job they do every day is managing the family finances. This is comparable to a bookkeeper or an accountant. Moms and dads earn money, track expenses, complete tax forms, and budget.

The salary ranges depending on experience and education. A Bookkeeper ($42,015 per year) has more basic knowledge and skills rather than an Entry Level Accountant ($51,284 per year) who has more specialized training.

6) Professional Organizer

white ceramic bottles on shelf

Moms are constantly organizing. It’s the job of the parents to keep the living space livable– which means implementing all the life hacks that they can find to simplify the day to day juggle.

Moms find creative ways to store all their children’s items, like toys, backpacks, shoes, lunchboxes, video games, etc.

They also get clever about how to fit all the necessities of life into small spaces, making the most of the room that they have. It’s an amazing thing to see!

Professional organizers make $42,825 per year on average.

(https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Professional_Organizer/Hourly_Rate)


Other Great Reads: 

25 Best Mom Hacks that Save Time, Energy, and Money

10 Best Hair Styles for Mom on a Busy School Morning

AMAZING Miracle of Moms- Let’s All Be That Mom Every Day

Fill Yourself- Balancing Parent Life and Personal Life


 

7) Cosmetologist

Moms and dads are in charge of their children’s appearance, at least before the kids are old enough to do their own hair and choose their own clothes.

This involves a lot beyond just running a comb through each child’s hair.

Moms and dads wash, cut, and style their children’s hair. They paint fingernails. They even dress the kids.

The average cosmetologist earns $27,278.

(https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/Cosmetologist-Salary)

8) Interior Design

four orange, green, blue, and red paint rollers

Parents are responsible for the general appearance and ambiance in their home.

When done well, this makes a big difference in quality of life.

Parents can design a home to promote fun, creativity, education, and relaxation. For example, a parent decides if there is a reading area in their home, if there are educational toys, if the wall colors encourage relaxation, if the children get a say in the design of their room, etc. There are endless possibilities!

Interior designers average $45,198 per year.

9) Photographer

It’s the parent’s job to catch all the wonderful moments in daily life and on special occasions. They are the photographer. It’s up to them to take pictures that will remind each other of the fun and happiness that we experienced as a family.

That’s no small task, and so important! It would be tragic to miss or forget the amazing details of childhood.

Photographers typically make $63,154.

10) Housekeeper

person holding two white towels

A housekeeper is similar to a maid. The job includes duties like doing laundry, tidying, deep cleaning and disinfecting, washing dishes, and making beds.

It’s important to know tricks to get stains out of clothes, how to clean carpets when kids pee on them, which cleaners are most effective for each surface in your home, and what chemicals are harmful to children.

Housekeepers average $25,091 per year.

11) Life Coach/Counselor

Moms and dads are constantly offering helpful advice to get their children through life’s learning process. This is one job of a parent that continues even after your children move out of the house.

You are called upon when your kids are disappointed by a bad grade, when a friend lets them down, when they go through a breakup, when they lose a job, when they move schools and miss their friends, when they don’t get along with their peers, when they experience bullying, when they make mistakes.

Your job is to offer emotional support, wisdom, and guidance.

You help them work through their feelings and guide them to find their own solutions.

A life coach typically earns $46,285 and a family support counselor earns about $38,926.

(https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Life_Coach/Hourly_Rate)

12) Purchaser/Merchandise Buyer

person holding basket filled with vegetables

Shopping is a never-ending chore for parents. Of course, I don’t mean the fun kind of shopping where you get cute new clothes. I mean grocery shopping. No fun.

Most businesses hire a purchaser, who is in charge of keeping warehouses and businesses stocked with essential items. That means everything from their top selling item to the toilet paper in the bathroom.

Moms do that too. We keep our homes stocked with everything from ketchup to batteries to shaving cream.

Purchasers earn approximately $91,360 per year.

13) Teacher or Teacher Aide  

All parents act as teacher aids. They are in charge of helping the child understand the concepts taught at school so that the child can successfully complete his homework. It’s not easy to explain and teach without just giving away answers.

Teacher’s Aids make $22,367 per year.

Some elite parents home school their kids. They take on the full role of teacher. That means you have all the duties of a teacher’s aid, but you also have to plan lessons, implement lessons, research various ways to present the information, test your child’s understanding, and meet the education criteria provided by your state.

I admire parents who can do all that because it’s a ton of work in addition to the regular workload of a parent!

Teachers make around $56,289 annually.

two babies and woman sitting on sofa while holding baby and watching on tablet

Moms, you’re priceless. But every once and a while, it’s nice to see a price anyways. 😊

I know, I probably forgot something…. The list is just so endless. You could include recreation management, pharmacist, tutor, car mechanic, seamstress, fashion designer, landscaper… There’s so much that parents do every day, there’s just no way to include every “job” a mom does.

 

Using the jobs listed above, let’s add all the salaries just for fun to see what the salary for all those roles combined would be!

Now, I know, adding a bunch of salaries isn’t exactly how a mom’s worth should be calculated because you have to control for factors like education requirements, professional experience, professional training, and special skills… Another limitation is that moms might spend much less time per job because they have so many total jobs to do rather than devoting a 40 hour workweek to each thing. For example, I spend about 7 hours per week helping my kids with their hair, but a cosmetologist spends 40 hours per week helping people with that.

Blah blah blah.

I know this number doesn’t mean much, But just for fun, let’s do it! We’ll get around to a more realistic dollar amount later.

All together… Mom jobs’ salaries combined equals….

$565,198 per year!!!!

 

Woo Hoo!!! And by the way, that’s going off of the lowest salaries combined- for example, there is a range in what accountants vs bookkeepers earned, so we used the salary for bookkeeper since it was lower. Just to be safe. So a mom’s salary could be even higher than that!

Again, this is a little bit of an unrealistic number because of various factors that need to be accounted for but WHO CARES???

It’s just nice to know that our work really is worth something!

 

Ok, I did promise a more accurate number.

I did find some awesome people who are smarter than me who did some accurate math to account for education, experience, etc. and the result was a more reasonable salary.

A mom’s (real and accurate) salary in 2018 should have been…..

$162,581!!!

 

person writing dollar sign on sketch book

Still good, but I like the first number better.

Comment Below- How much money would be “worth it” to you for all the work you do as a mom if you were considering making “mom” your chosen career?

 

Thanks for having some fun with me today looking into what a mom is “worth”. Seriously, there isn’t a number that accurately reflects all the love and patience and sacrifice you do every day.

But it is weirdly nice to know that we are worth a lot. What we do really is hard, despite all those haters who ask “What do moms do at home all day?” They might not understand all the jobs you moms do every day, but I do.

Keep it up! You’re amazing.

Sincerely,

Mrs. S

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The Most Important Word in the English Language- Remember- The Best and Worst Times as a Mom

The Most Important Word in the English Language (For Parents)- Remember

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Photo by Nicole Honeywill on Unsplash

This post may contain advertisements and/or links for products and services that I value. I offer recommendations to products and/or services that I find helpful in my own life as a mom. I may receive a commission based on viewer purchases or interactions with these ads. You will NOT be charged any extra money. All prices will stay the same for you whether your purchase items/services through links found on this site or not! 

Image result for parenting joke remember

Parenting is a lot of work, and every once and a while, you start to really feel it.

Each of a child’s stages of growth are hard in their own way for the parents. Each one has something that we don’t look forward to.

  • Dirty diapers,
  • sleepless nights,
  • tantrums,
  • helping with homework,
  • when our kids start dating…

No wonder our hair turns grey.

But each stage also has so many wonderful things! Things to look forward to before the stage comes and things to look back on fondly after that stage ends.

I’ve heard that one of the most important words in the English language is “remember.”

I want to take a minute to remember all the great things from each stage of my kids’ lives- and look forward to the fun things coming up for our family as well!

Comment below- What is your favorite stage and why? What is your favorite memory from daily life with your kids?

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  • Babies:

Yes, there are poopy diapers, sleepless nights, and little extra time and energy for yourself.

Enjoy this great resource on getting through the tough parts of the baby stage! Click the image below!

The Sh!t No One Tells You: A Guide to Surviving Your Baby’s First Year

But, here are just a few of the great things about the baby stage:

baby lying on fabric cloth

-Remember wondering- what will they look like? When will they be born? What will their personality be like?

-Remember how they fit in your arm?

-Remember how they liked to be held tight?

-Remember the one-on-one time in the middle of the night? Just you and your baby?

-Remember how they changed your life?

-Remember when they were too big for their tiny clothes?

-Remember when they started saying mama or dada?

-Remember how excited you were for every new skill they learned? Using their hands, eating food, sitting up, standing, walking, talking?

-Remember how they smiled at you every time you walked in the room?

-Remember how they put their arms up for you to hold them?

-Remember how peaceful and cozy they looked when they were sleeping?

-Remember when they fell asleep on your chest?

  • Toddlers:

girl with paint of body

Yes, there is potty training, tantrums, and lots of messes day to day.

Enjoy this resource to help you through the tough parts of the toddler stage! Click the image below.
The Happiest Toddler on the Block: How to Eliminate Tantrums and Raise a Patient, Respectful, and Cooperative One- to Four-Year-Old: Revised Edition

But there are also wonderful things about the toddler stage. Here are just a few of the amazing things about toddlers:

-Remember how interested they were in the world around them?

-Remember how silly they were?

-Remember when they played peekaboo with you every chance they got? Under the table, behind the couch, behind books?

-Remember how they got so excited to see you when you came home?

-Remember how they got too big to cradle, so you had to hug them upright instead?

-Remember how proud they were of their accomplishments? The first time they went potty on the toilet, picking up their toys, making you laugh?

-Remember when people would stop you in the store to tell you how cute and precious your child was?

-Remember how they would snuggle into you when they were nervous about a stranger in the store who wanted to talk to them?

-Remember how they loved to help you with everything you were doing? Laundry, dishes, sweeping the floor… Even though it wasn’t always super helpful?

-Remember when they got excited about everything you were excited about, even if they didn’t really understand why you were excited?

-Remember how happy they were all the time?

  • Childhood:

girl holding red maple leaf

Yes, there are lots of late nights doing homework, striving to teach all kinds of life skills (money, responsibility, honesty, taking care their things, basic cooking, and so much more!), and coaching through social problems between friends and siblings.

Click the image below for a great resources to help through this stage!
No-Drama Discipline: The Whole-Brain Way to Calm the Chaos and Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind

The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind

But there are countless fun and exciting things unique to childhood, such as:

-Remember their first friends?

-Remember when they went to school for the first time? They were excited and scared. You had to let them go.

-Remember when they started understanding jokes? And they were so excited to tell them to you, even if you’d heard them a thousand times?

-Remember watching them get independent? Capable of helping themselves instead of needing you to do everything for them?

-Remember when they started being helpful around the house? Capable of cleaning up after themselves, setting the table, unloading the dishwasher….

-Remember when they worked hard to earn something they wanted? They were so happy when they got it, but that was nothing compared to how proud you were of their hard work.

-Remember when they were disappointed? You would have done anything to fix it for them. But you couldn’t, and you knew that they would learn something, but it still hurt both of you.

-Remember when they started reading and opened up a whole new world of possibilities for themselves? All the sudden, they are reading billboards, TV commercials, shopping lists, everything they can get their hands on!

-Remember when they started writing their own name? And then you had to worry that random objects would be labeled with your child’s name?

-Remember when they learned to imagine? They started coming up with their own stories, with their own plot twists, settings, characters, all the elements of a great tale.

-Remember when they wanted you to play with them?

-Remember when they wanted to be cool, but they didn’t really know how? All they needed to be cool was a dollar store pair of sunglasses or a Spiderman back pack.

  • Teenagers:

woman laughing beside woman smiling sitting on tufted sofa inside the room

Yes, you’ll have to deal with your child dating, high emotions and hormones, miscommunications or refusal on the child’s part to communicate with you.

Often this stage comes with defiance and frustration with rules as the child tries to become their own person and learn who they are.

Here’s a wonderful help to teen troubles. Click the image below!
Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood

The Guy’s Guide to God, Girls, and the Phone in Your Pocket: 101 Real-World Tips for Teenaged Guys

But teens have great qualities that younger kids don’t have yet!

-Remember when they were old enough to really talk to? Like, really talk to?

-Remember when they liked to play pranks?

-Remember when they first thought about morals? Remember when they came up with their own opinions on moral topics?

-Remember when they disagreed with you, and they actually had good arguments to back up their position?

-Remember seeing them become who they wanted to be?

-Remember when they chose hobbies and interests? Remember how hard they worked to be good at it?

-Remember when they were so proud of their accomplishments?

-Remember when they learned to drive? A whole door was opened to them. Remember how much they loved their first car, even if it was an old beater?

-Remember when they opened up to you and told you how they were feeling, even if it was few and far between?

-Remember when they cried on your shoulder over a break up, and you were secretly so glad that relationship was over?

-Remember when you hoped and prayed that they would come home safely every night? And you stayed up late just to make sure?

-Remember how you loved them even when they were difficult?

woman holding lit heart

And through all stages, no matter how big or how small your child was, remember hoping that they would never get bigger? Hoping it would never end? Hoping they would stay your baby forever?

Well, they do get bigger, and it is sad for us parents. But they are our babies forever. No matter what.

But that doesn’t mean we will miss the way they used to be. Parents will always look back on childhood and miss how our little ones once were.

It’s ok, they can get bigger and move on to be adults. They’ll accomplish great things and raise sweet children of their own. We can handle that, as long as we can remember how they used to be.

woman between two childrens sitting on brown wooden bench during daytime

For those of us who are still in it, let’s soak them up! Treasure your babies while they are babies.

For those of you whose children are already grown, enjoy the memories and share your advice for the rest of us!

Comment below what gems of knowledge you want us all to have!

Love all you moms and dads! Keep up the hard work, and don’t forget to remember!

Sincerely,

Mrs. S

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Shut Down the Mommy Guilt By Teaching Your Kids through your Mistakes

5 Ways to Shut Down the Mommy Guilt by Teaching Kids Through Your Own Failures

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This post may contain advertisements and/or links for products and services that I value. I offer recommendations to products and/or services that I find helpful in my own life as a mom. I may receive a commission based on viewer purchases or interactions with these ads. You will NOT be charged any extra money. All prices will stay the same for you whether your purchase items/services through links found on this site or not! 

Updated 2/12/2019

Like every parent out there, I want the best for my kids.

And I realize that my kids have the best shot in life if I give them 100% every day. The best teaching, the best example, the best guidance.

So it hurts when I’m not at my best and I wish I could be.

But this helps.

No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good. A silly idea is current that good people do not know what temptation means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is. After all, you find out the strength of the German army by fighting it, not by giving in. You find out the strength of a wind by trying to walk against it, not by lying down. A man who gives in to temptation after five minutes simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people, in one sense, know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in.” -CS Lewis

  • I am a good mom because I know what I need to change to be better.
  • I am a good mom because I try to make those changes every day.
  • And I am a good mom because I don’t stop when it gets tough.

When those evil voices in my head try to tear me down, here are 5 steps to stop them! 

boy riding on girl's back outdoors during daytime

(Please note- depression or anxiety disorders may need professional help of a doctor and/or counselor.  These steps should not take the place of professional help.)

1) Shut them up.

I hate those voices in my head that tell me that I can’t do it, that I’m a bad parent, that I’m not good enough. They are noisy, obnoxious, and negative.

The only good thing about them is that they aren’t real. They don’t represent reality. They don’t accurately portray who I am.

And I’m the only one who can hear them. Nobody else is thinking what they are saying to me.

That gives me a lot of power.

All I have to do to shut them up is to think about anything else. Two thoughts can’t fit in my brain at the same time, especially a positive thought and a negative thought. If I focus on the positives in my life, the negatives just don’t have any room left.

Or if I think about someone else and what I can do to help them, there just isn’t any space for those nasty thoughts left.

I have the power to shut them up.

For more on this topic, click the image below.
Recovery IS Possible. The Voices In Your Head Are LYING To You!: 120 Page Journal With Inspiring, Uplifting Quotes At The Top Of Each Page (Anxiety Journals)

2) Be objective.

People who aren’t directly involved in a situation weirdly tend to see clearer what is happening. That’s because they aren’t confused by the overwhelming emotions and chaos of the moment.

When I am trying to make changes in myself, it helps to step back and take the role of an outside observer.

I ask myself, “If a good friend came to me with my exact situation, what would I advise him to do? What would I suggest that he change?”

If a good friend needed my help, I wouldn’t judge him or criticize him for the situation he is in! So I don’t judge or criticize myself as I think through what I want to fix about my parenting.

I just think logically about where I am now, where I want to be, and what reasonable steps lay between.

Then I take the first step.

person wearing green pants

3) Pick one thing.

Change doesn’t happen all at once, like turning on a light switch. It’s usually little by little, like a sunrise, that you become who and what you want to be.

So start with a reasonable, attainable goal.

What can I accomplish today?                                                                                                         

After a day or two of success, I feel more capable of expanding my goal. Once I build my confidence, I build on the original goal.

What can I accomplish in one week?

Little by little, I become a different person with new habits and attitudes. More like my ideal self. And it shows in my parenting.

4) Accept setbacks.

brown and red wooden barricade

In all this, I have to remember that setbacks will happen.

Just because I’m making progress toward a goal doesn’t mean that I am suddenly a perfect person- and I shouldn’t expect perfection of myself.

There will be days that I take a step backward instead of moving forward.

Sometimes there is a week or a month or a year that I seem to slide backward.

But that just means that I have more opportunity to move forward again in the future. It’s never too late to become a better person, a better parent.

5) Teach!

Our kids learn wonderful things from watching parents struggle through their own life challenges.

  • Kids learn that they don’t have to be any one thing.
  • They learn from their parents’ example that they can change if they want to- and they learn HOW to do so.
  • Showing kids that life is difficult (but not impossible!) prepares them to accomplish difficult things in their own lives.

Don’t shelter your children from your failures. Let them see.

close-up photo of human eye with tear drops

If they think you are perfect, they will think that they should be perfect when they reach  adulthood. And that would be a nasty surprise when they reach adulthood and find themselves to be imperfect.

And imagine how you and your child can celebrate together when you reach your goals! Show your child that it was all worth it. That you did it- you handled the pain and fear and frustration and you overcame the odds.

Show them, and then they can do it too. They will use you as inspiration when life gets challenging.

How ironic that they are often our inspiration too.

So decide today what you want to be, and go and make it happen.

Sincerely,

Mrs. S

P.S. Want to help your children learn to control the voice in their heads? Help them have a positive inner voice using this resource! Click the image below!

That Little Voice in Your Head: Learning about your Conscience

Share with any parent who wants to improve themselves!

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Indisputable Reasons to be Honest Now and Raise Your Kids to Be Honest Too

3 Indisputable Reasons to Be Honest NOW and Raise Your Kids to Be Honest Too

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Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

This post may contain advertisements and/or links for products and services that I value. I offer recommendations to products and/or services that I find helpful in my own life as a mom. I may receive a commission based on viewer purchases or interactions with these ads. You will NOT be charged any extra money. All prices will stay the same for you whether your purchase items/services through links found on this site or not! 

Updated 2/12/2019

Honesty is a tough thing.

I think everyone wants to be honest until the moment when they get caught in a mistake or an embarrassing situation.

  • We don’t want to disappoint others,
  • we don’t want them to think less of us,
  • we don’t want to be punished,
  • we think there is something we can gain from the lie,
  • we are trying to fit a mold,
  • or we want to feel better about ourselves.

It just seems easier to fudge the truth.

And why not? Who does it hurt anyways? Is honesty really the “best policy?” 

1) Effect on Self

Let’s begin by making sure we are all on the same page about what a lie is. The definition of a lie is deceit on purpose.

I’m not talking about all those times when someone legitimately didn’t know that they were in the wrong. I mean deliberately changing the facts for your own benefit.

person avoiding to photo face

If lies are deliberate, is it possible to lie to yourself?

Yes.

Albert Adler called this a “life lie”. It’s the act of trying to trick yourself into being something else- something holy, with good intentions, who never did any wrong. It’s hiding your mistakes from yourself. You might even start to believe it after a while, but like any lie, in the moment of creation you knew it wasn’t true.

The problem with hiding from your truths is that you never learn any real and lasting lessons from your life.

Living perfectly isn’t living. It’s ok that you’re not perfect. If you were, you’d be bored. And a perfect life wouldn’t include boredom- so I guess it just isn’t possible.

Life is full of mistakes and accidents. Each time we rule out something that isn’t effective in our relationships, in our parenting, in our jobs, we get a step closer to becoming effective in those areas. Without this individual education, we couldn’t know who we are, what we want, or where we’re going in life. 

Every time you trick your brain by lying to yourself, you condition yourself to be a certain way. You condition yourself to be a liar. You lose some of your character, some of your strength to tell the truth or to be who you should be.

person in black hoodie

Your brain only activates its regions that are being used. That means if you lie, your brain is actively creating connections that support your lie. That’s why people start to believe it after a while.

That’s also why lies are addicting. Your brain is stuck in those working connections.

Consider all the prison guards in the Nazi camps. Yes, this is an extreme example- but it illustrates how far things can go when people lie to themselves.

These prison guards did terrible, horrendous things. They were normal people like you and me at some point in their life. But, they denied their inner conscience (which surely told them in the beginning that it is wrong to harm innocent people).

They didn’t just deny their conscience once- they denied it over and over again.

At first, there were small things that didn’t seem consequential, like accepting that they were a better than others because of their race. Then treating others like they were lesser humans. Then stealing property from others because of their race… On and on until they justified to themselves- despite the pleadings of their human side- that they could physically abuse others.

As they repeatedly lied to themselves, they slowly lost the ability to differentiate the truth. They forgot how to use their own moral compass to point them north. With their brain conditioning to act according to the will of their leaders and not to respond to their own feelings, they lost the ability to stand up for themselves until they were stuck in something much bigger than themselves.

woman in black hat

The only remedy is to start telling the truth.

Flip this process on its head. Start your brain to creating new connections- ones that support the truth. Build your character to be stronger than it is today- step by step. Tell one truth, and get a little stronger. Tell another, and you’ll gain a little confidence. Keep it up, and you’ll start forming a habit.

Lying to yourself or to others hurts your soul. It weakens your character. It is childishly seeking your own good at the expense of others. It is failure to accept responsibility or consequences for your actions or thoughts.

Do yourself a favor. Tell the truth. You don’t have to shell out everything about your personal life to everyone you come into contact with. You don’t even have to answer questions that are directly posed to you if you don’t want to.

But don’t deliberately deceive others or yourself.

For more information on transforming your life through honesty, click the image below!

Radical Honesty: How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth

2) Effect on Children

Let’s apply this to parenthood.

What do you imagine your child becoming when they are an adult?

I’m sure they are smart, successful, confident, in control of their lives, capable, and effective. They make wise choices and positively influence the people around them. They have families, careers, educations, and happiness.

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That’s every parent’s dream for their kids.

Honesty directly influences those marks of being successful in two ways.

  1. What are the odds that the person described in section 1 could raise a kid like that?

Kids learn from our example.

If we constantly lie to ourselves, the kid will know it. Kids pick up on much less.

They know the difference between what we say and what we do. They know when we are hypocritical or when we fail to practice what we preach.

Kids whose parents lie learn to lie. And they learn to mistrust others.

person looking in the middle of two beige cushions

2. Let’s say your kid learns to lie from watching you or others around him. He becomes the person described in section 1. What are the odds that the person described in section 1 could have all those positive qualities that you wish for your child?

Yes, he no doubt has some positive qualities, but he is short changing himself.

If your child learns to lie to himself, it will be much more difficult for him to develop into the person you want him to be.

Is a liar smart, successful, confident, in control of their lives, capable, and effective?

You tell me. And don’t lie.

Click the images below for more resources on teaching children to tell the truth!
Teach Your Dragon to Stop Lying: A Dragon Book To Teach Kids NOT to Lie. A Cute Children Story To Teach Children About Telling The Truth and Honesty. (My Dragon Books) (Volume 15)

I Love to Tell the Truth

The Berenstain Bears and the Truth

3) Effect on Society

Imagine a whole civilization of people who accept lies as a part of daily life. They try to deceive each other deliberately on a regular basis. It’s not too hard to imagine because it’s not too far from our reality.

(Just think about our politicians!)

There is mass decrease in character in society as a whole. (We know that such a mass falling from grace is possible from watching societies like Nazi Germany.)

In our culture, most people accept that lies are bad- unless it’s themselves telling the lie and until the reasons justify the deception.

We see this all the time- at work, in marriages, on TV, on social media, and definitely in politics.

People don’t stand up for their true beliefs. They trick themselves into fitting the mold (a mold of shame, hiding, and embarrassment).

Each generation teaches the next one to continue this path, which makes each new generation more and more stuck in bad habits. And then we’re stuck- controlled by forces beyond our control, living at the whim of what the majority wants for us instead of what we want for ourselves.

There it is.

Lies influence society as a whole, not just the people involved in the lie.

Can you imagine a society that didn’t live like this? What if we lived in a culture that was so honest that we could trust our politicians? I can’t even imagine that…. But I’m excited about any small step we can take toward that.

Click on the image below!
Getting Real: Ten Truth Skills You Need to Live an Authentic Life

Be a strong individual. Be in control. Be honest.

There is no such thing as an innocent lie. It impacts your soul and your character. This impacts your parenting. This impacts society.

The truth matters. Being real matters.

Tell the truth. Always.

Sincerely,

Mrs. S

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What About Me? Moms, Stop Feeling Resentment Towards Your Kids

What About Me? Stop Feeling Resentment Towards Your Kids With These Self-Care Tips

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Updated 2/11/2019

 

So, you’re a parent.

That probably means you haven’t had sleep, money, time, or energy for yourself in…. how old is your oldest? That many years. Plus about 9 months for the pregnancy.

That much dedication is draining.

It can zap our will to keep going.

woman laying on bed

Here’s the worst case scenario when this kind of draining lifestyle goes too far:

Parents who are too emotionally drained start wondering where they lost themselves to the demands of their children. Then they feel terrible, because what kind of a selfish person would take good care of themselves when their kids’ every whim goes unmet?

So they buckle down and make themselves focus on the kids even more. The feelings of wishing for something better keeps coming back, followed by the mommy- or daddy-guilt. This cycle eventually builds into resentment towards the child for keeping you from your hopes and dreams AND for keeping you in a constant state of guilt for not being the perfect parent. But the parent keeps trying to be a good parent.

They flip flop between resentment, which causes them to be impatient and harsh towards their children, and the guilt, which causes them to coddle and pamper their children in an attempt to fix the resentment with false love. The kids are confused because of this flip flopping and don’t know what to expect from mom or dad. This can cause the children to act out, which frustrates the parent.

The parent continues in a vicious spiral downward until they stop and fix the initial problem.

(By the way, I’m not dramatizing this. I’ve seen it in action and it’s a scary thing. It can cause child abuse, suicide, and other scary side effects when this cycle has taken its tole for an extended period of time.)

Please note- depression or anxiety disorders may need professional help of a doctor and/or counselor.  These steps should not take the place of professional help.

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And what is the problem?

We all need things. The basics include food, water, and shelter- you know, survival stuff.

But there are other needs that are just as important- like feeling emotionally connected with people, feeling sexually fulfilled, feeling safe, feeling competent, feeling proud of yourself, etc.

Click the image below!
Meet Maslow: How Understanding the Priorities of Those Around Us Can Lead To Harmony And Improvement

And every parent needs a reminder to take care of those things for themselves. And a reminder that taking care of themselves is not selfish.

I believe that every parent has felt twinges of resentment towards their children at times.

After all, they do keep us from doing things we want, and that’s not fun.

So here’s what I do when I start to notice the beginnings of resentment in my parenting. Act fast- Don’t let those feelings fester!

1) Don’t React

Like, you know, yelling or swearing or whatever other less-than-perfect discipline strategies I use when I respond without thinking.

That’s the first step for me- Don’t react.

If I do, I get myself and my kids deeper into a negative situation. Then, I have to deal with that before I can leave to take care of my own needs- which often means that I’m drained and resentful while trying to manage my way through a delicate parenting situation.

It just doesn’t work.

So the best situation is to wait to react. Then I don’t make things worse right when I really need a break the most.

Of course, this is so much easier said than done.

I usually realize that I have some unmet needs when I flip a lid for no good reason. Only then do I stop to ask myself, “What is really going on here?”

That’s when I realize how drained I am.

It’s not the best method, and I’m working on fixing it, but the silver lining is that I usually can stop myself from flipping a lid in the future once I’m aware of my own needs.

So one bad moment can prevent future bad moments.

2) Listen to Myself

A better solution is to be aware of my needs before I flip a lid.

I find that my body and mind give me clues to my own stability constantly- but they are easy to miss if I’m busy. These clues could be things like:

  • A headache

man covering his eye

  • Forgetting to eat or drink
  • Letting my kids get away with things that they usually wouldn’t get away with
  • Forgetfulness
  • Being late for things
  • Not putting effort into daily things- like getting dressed or putting on makeup
  • Short temper with my kids and my husband
  • Assuming that people around me have bad intentions in the things they do

Of course, not all of these things will apply to everyone, but these are some of the warning signs that tell me I’m forgetting to take care of myself.

If I can catch these things sooner, I can take action to fix the problem before I melt down.

When things get busy, it is hard to stop to evaluate yourself.

Self-evaluations can be difficult. People often don’t notice the effects of burnout in yourself until it’s done, even though there are warning signs. I often think to myself, “I can handle this. I can keep going.”

But that’s the problem. It’s like swimming out into the ocean. If I swim until I can’t swim any more, I will have no energy to get back to shore. I have to force myself to take a break before I am at the point where I can’t keep going.

For some great stress management tools, click the images below!

5-Minute Stress Managment: 7 Fast Acting Tension Killer Methods

The Magic of Happiness: How To Reduce Stress And Be Happy Every Day.: (How to be happy, Anti-stress picture book, Happiness, Positive Thinking, Stress Managment, Live stress-free, Overcome stress)

Pattern Coloring Book for Adults: Relax with this Calming, Stress Managment, Adult Coloring Book of Hand Drawn and Geometric Patterns (Adult Coloring Books) (Volume 3)

So, don’t be afraid to give yourself the relief you need early on. This will help prevent burnout rather than recovering from it.

3) Assess My Children’s Situation

This is the part of the process where you have to balance your responsibilities as a parent and your individuality as a human being.

That’s really tricky.

I have two rules of thumb about how to proceeded from here.

First rule- Once I have identified a need in myself, I next need to assess the severity of the need.

The ideal is that I would catch it soon so that I have a few days to find a good time for myself. If I can do that, I can take the steps I need to fix it. These could include:

  • Arranging a babysitter
  • Giving my husband a heads up that he might need to take the kids for an evening
  • Shopping for a treat
  • Finding quiet time after the kids are in bed
  • Arranging an outing

If I don’t catch it in time, I might only have hours or minutes to take care of myself before I have a freak out.

Second rule- Take care of the kids’ needs, not ALL their wants.

Click the image below!
Need It Or Want It? (Little World Social Studies)

Now is no time to be a super mom.

Now is time to simplify.

Again, this is balancing between parenting responsibilities and my own well being.

I can’t neglect the kids and I can’t neglect myself. So I have to figure out the difference between what HAS to happen and what COULD happen. I do a lot of extra things during the day that can be cut out during times of crisis. These might include:

  • Shopping (Usually there’s enough bits and pieces around the house to scrounge up a meal or having a few things in the freezer can save you on bad days.)
  • Cleaning (It can wait til tomorrow.)
  • Laundry (There’s always something to wear in the back of the closet.)
  • Dishes (That’s what paper plates are for!!)
  • Errands
  • Cooking (Cereal for dinner is just fine once and a while!)

Eliminating even one of these things might be enough to lighten the load.

There are things in my routine that I never will give up, even on hard days. You’ll have to make your own list of what is important to you and remember those essentials.

These are the only things I have to worry about during a crisis:

  • Hygiene for everyone (kids and myself)
  • School and homework
  • Meals (I mean that the kids won’t go hungry- but I still stand by my comment about cereal for dinner.)
  • Work (As in my work and my husband’s work- we still gotta have jobs to support our family!)
  • Safety

That’s it. Bare bones. These are the things we absolutely need to survive and retain our standing as responsible parents.

combat knife on tree trunk

It’s strangely relieving to simplify.

Just switching my focus is sometimes enough to give me the break I need. Just remembering that I don’t HAVE to do it all can give me the strength to do the essentials.

  • EXTREME Moments:

I want to take a minute to talk about those times when I only have hours or minutes to take care of myself or I’ll lose it.

There’s no time to plan a getaway.

And this usually happens in the thick of things, so the kids are usually right there and they need me.

And there is the problem. They need me, but I have nothing to give.

Stick to the same two rules- Assess the severity of your needs (we now know that this instance is very severe) and take care of the kids’ needs, not wants.

That means your kids’ needs within the next 10 minutes, which are usually very simple. They just need to be safe for 10 minutes. They don’t have to have their lunch in the next 10 minutes, so feel free to postpone eating. They don’t have to finish their homework in the next 10 minutes, so feel free to take a break from it.

Start there. Try to stay calm. Where is safe for them while you have some quiet time? What activities will keep them occupied so that you can get 5 minutes of peace?

man sitting on gray dock

This is where the good ol’ tactic of putting a movie on comes in handy. My kids don’t watch a lot of TV, so it holds their attention very well.

If you have a fenced backyard, you might send them outside.

Or maybe it’s best for them to go to their room for a while.

Whatever it is, simplify your mindset of what needs to happen. If you are at that point where you only have minutes, the only need that matters is that they stay safe for a sec.

That really frees up your options to meet your own needs. You can be a responsible parent and take care of yourself at the same time. There is no need to beat yourself up over 10 minutes of quiet in your room.

Besides the fact that you feel more rejuvenated after, you also set a good example for your child. They learned that when they are frustrated or overwhelmed, they can calmly take care of the necessities and then handle their own feelings in a safe and responsible way.

Children who know how to do this will become successful adults and model citizens.

4) Don’t Get Distracted

Be aware that your needs change every day, so a bubble bath isn’t going to fix the problem each time.

But it could be exactly what you need on some days!

Consider what you are craving at the moment. Here’s some of my favorites that fill my needs:

  • Eating a treat that I don’t usually get to enjoy
  • A cozy bath
  • A girl’s day with my best friends
  • A date night with my husband
  • Quiet time after the kids go to bed
  • A walk outside
  • Sitting around a campfire or being in nature
  • Getting dressed up and looking good
  • Having a clean house… or at least one clean room… even for 5 minutes
  • Going out to eat
  • Snuggling my husband
  • A warm cup of hot chocolate

Again, sometimes my needs are different so no single activity will solve all my problems. My poor husband often wants to help, but he can’t read my mind to know what to do for me.

I am in charge of communicating what I feel and what I need from him- in specific detail and in kind words.

I have made the mistake of asking him to pick up a treat, only to find that I wasn’t in the mood for what he brought home. It’s my job to make sure he knows if there is something specific I want or don’t want.

Don’t make the mistake of putting yourself off.

sleeping woman in train at daytime

Don’t swim until you’re exhausted- leave yourself energy to get back to shore. Don’t listen to that voice in your head that tells you that you’re fine right up until you’re not fine anymore.

You’re worth taking care of.

Really.

Besides, your well being directly affects your kids. See my post on Taking Care of Others When you Have Nothing Left to Give.

5) Don’t Forget your Significant Other

Although I am getting better at taking care of my own needs, I have to put extra effort into watching out for my husband.

grayscale photo of man and woman kissing each other

He has his own ups and downs in the parenting life and it’s my job to be a support to him when he needs a break, just like he supports me when I do.

So I’ve got to listen to him.

Not just his words, but I also watch him for signs that he might be getting burnt out. Some of my husband’s signs are the same as mine, such as irritability, but some are different.

  • Spending more time alone- like going outside or being on his phone
  • Comments about having a tough day at work- especially for several days in a row
  • Quiet, not talkative
  • Not laughing
  • Worries about money more than usual
  • Wants to buy things
  • Less interest in being healthy (poor diet and less exercise)

My husband’s warning signs are usually cured by some time away doing things he likes to do. Here are some things that usually fill my husband’s needs:

  • Fishing, camping, or other outdoors activities
  • Hanging out with the guys
  • Watching a movie (but not a chick flick- something he is excited about)
  • A good night’s sleep
  • A Saturday or a day off of work
  • A little lovin’ (Fun for me too!)
  • Date nights
  • Buying things like fishing gear
  • Going out to eat

It took some time and a lot of effort to learn these quirks about my husband, but I’m so glad I know them now!

Our life has been so much more balanced since we started being more aware of our individual needs and our needs as a couple. We look out for each other and give each other breaks OFTEN. We keep each other going. Our marriage is stronger and our kids are happier because we are happier. We are better parents.

black stacking stones on gray surface

I don’t always notice my husband’s burnout and he doesn’t always notice mine. We still have miscommunications about it. We still have to be patient with each other.

But things are better. We feel more balanced. We feel less strained.

It was so worth the effort to learn these things about my husband. If you have a partner, I strongly recommend this method!

 

Know that mommy/daddy guilt happens to every parent.

Catch it early and don’t let negative feelings fester.

Find out what you need as an individual and get those needs met. That will allow you to continue to have the strength to be a good parent over the long-term.

Sincerely,

Mrs. S

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