There is barely time in the day to check if your hair has been brushed as a busy working mum, let alone wallow in the mire of self-pity. However, placing everybody else’s needs above your own on an hourly basis will wear even the greatest stalwart down eventually. If you don’t feel appreciated at home, you’re not alone. You can get these and other great tips delivered to you inbox by signing up here.
Here are three main ways in which you can start feeling appreciated once more.
1. Communicate rather than becoming a martyr. It is ok to say no sometimes. In fact, it is often preferable than the stock response of a deep sigh, resigned shrug and an ‘I’ll just do it myself’ mutter. This will not only be deeply irritating to all that witness it, but it will also undermine your ‘appreciate me’ cause. Stand your ground if you ask your partner to do something and fifteen minutes later he’s still sitting slack jawed in front of the television. Yes, it may be quicker just to sort it out yourself but that sets the wrong expectations. Most certainly don’t be fobbed off by the odious chant of ‘stop nagging’. You are not nagging, you are asking for help and support and you are most certainly entitled to it.
2. Ringfence time for you. Accept that if you don’t create it, it probably won’t be created for you except, perhaps, on your birthday and Mother’s Day! You are a separate entity to your children and your husband and you are doing them no favours by not taking care of yourself. Go read your book, take a walk or have a quiet glass of wine – by doing so you are ultimately looking after the needs of your loved ones by ensuring your own sanity and patience are maintained.
3. Let your partner stand in your shoes. This is a great one – simply head off for the day or, if you’re brave, the weekend or a whole week. Resist the temptation to leave lists, prepared meals or drawers full of clean clothes. Partners will never appreciate the magnitude of all you do around the house, if all you ask of them is to look after the children. Force a few revolutions of the washing machine drum, as well as a quick start initiation of the inner workings of the oven. Your children may be less clean by the end of the week, but no harm will have become them; in fact they will probably enjoy the whole chaotic experience. Your partner might not. They will have a renewed admiration for you on your return, leaving you to briefly smugly smile to yourself before you attempt to sort out the bombsite that your house has become. One word of caution to this tale – have a word with your mother-in-law before your planned exodus, to ensure that she does not become complicit in the lack of appreciation. Tell her under no circumstances should she make herself available during this enforced boot camp rather her on-going role as a parent demands that she stays away.
Ultimately, as a working mother, you need to take responsibility for your own appreciation, along with the long list of other things. So roll out the bunting, hire a fanfare and drive the cheerleading from the front!
Have a tip on how you keep up your spirits, or want to give some love to your fellow working mums? Do share below and don’t forget to visit Coaching Mums to view our latest FREE resources for helping you achieve more balance in your life. If you’d like a little inspiration and support delivered free to your inbox, click here to sign up for my free ezine; Inspire.