Why "Mom Guilt" Is A Threat To Simple Living

You know the feeling— the unrest, the need to continually multi-task, the pulling at your mind, the guilty conscience of a mom who also has dreams. 

We spend our days cleaning up spilled chocolate milk and changing diapers, tripping over legos and refolding the same blankets 37 times a day— but what about when we have jobs to go to, or writing to get done, or that side project that we can never seem to finish because we can't get 10 minutes of peace and quiet? 

I know "mom guilt" all too well and I think the balance between a healthy mindset and a guilt-ridden one is hard to strike at times. With my two girls at home, running SL & Co., working another job from home 4 days a week, and somehow managing to throw a salad and chicken nuggets together for dinner, I know as well as anyone that having dreams outside my role as "mom" can be tough

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not advocating that we neglect our kids to get work done, or that we give up on our side projects, dreams and jobs because they're getting in the way. I am, however, here to say that the guilty feeling that we shouldn't sneak in an hour of work during a movie, or take a night to ourselves to focus on what re-fuels us could be eating away at your chances of truly living simply. 

Here's why. 

mom-guilt-coffee-and-mara.jpeg

At its core, mom guilt says that because you're a mom, you're not allowed to do anything other than "mom things".

It sounds ridiculous when it's spelled out in front of you- but it's a real struggle most moms face. I've heard of so many women giving up on their passions because they felt like the roles mama and entrepreneur (or insert your passion here) couldn't apply to them. They felt like they had to choose either/or. 

And while certainly, it's true that if something is going to cause you to truly neglect your children, or make being a good mom impossible, it's okay to say no. But more often than not, I think the mom guilt that holds us back is nothing more than a fear that we can't balance it all. That we're not enough. 

And that, my friends, is simply not true. You have God-given passions for a reason. These dreams that linger on your mind before you fall asleep at night? They're meant to be pursued- and motherhood isn't an either/or gig. In fact, pursuing your passions will make you a better mom- a more satisfied, passionate, inspirational one. 

The beauty of simple living is that as you seek to de-clutter your thoughts, home and heart from all the things you don't need, you'll be able to balance more of what's important. 

You'll learn to cut out the unnecessary "obligations" and prioritize what's truly important. And as you begin to make time for yourself, and make time for that side project, you'll find yourself being an even better mother to your children.

So let's thrive together as mothers AND creatives, shall we? What are the passions that get your heart beating? 

How can we keep each other accountable to keep pursuing them when it gets tough?

7 Mother's Day Gift Ideas for New Moms

Growing up, I remember agonizing over Mother's Day. And mom, since I know you're reading this, I know it probably didn't seem that way, since we defaulted to breakfast in bed every year I can remember- but I did. I wanted it to be special. Somehow, even as a child, I knew the strength, courage, love and selflessness it took to parent my brothers and I was worth celebrating- even if the only way I knew how to do so was by cooking the same breakfast of eggs and toast each Mother's Day morning. Thanks for eating it, mom. 

And now, as a mother myself, I'm in her place. The strong, sleepless, courageous, loving place of motherhood where everyone else comes first- and it's hard. And it (not me specifically, but motherhood in general) deserves to be celebrated, in all its hard, raw, unglamorous, beauty. And though my girls are still too young to cook me breakfast in bed every Mother's Day for ten years straight (husband, that's on you) I know the heart-melting feeling of a gift that came straight from another heart to yours. 

So in honor of that heart-melting motherhood feeling,  I want to share a few gift ideas for new mamas, or any age of mama for that matter, that will go a bit deeper than signing your name on a card. 

7-mothers-day-gift-ideas-new-moms.jpeg

 1. Alone Time

Sometimes all a mama wants it to be with no one except herself. No one pulling on her clothes or yelling or asking for food (husband or child...those are all appropriate examples...). Just tell her you'll watch the kids for a day so she can go do whatever the heck she wants. She'll love it.

2. Relaxation

This one doesn't have to be pricey, but it can be if you want to go all out. Pay for a pedicure or facial, or better yet a massage. Know a pregnant mama? Get her a prenatal massage. I guarantee she needs it.

3. A Meal

Offer to cook her a meal one night. Cook for the whole family, or just her, either way it will be a treat. You can even take her out to dinner for some one on one time, if your wallet allows.

4. A Gift Card For Free Coffee

Because she's a mom, that's why.

5. Something Handmade

Even if you're not crafty per se, you can still make something she will love. Print off some photos of her and her kid(s), or you and her, frame it with something pretty, wrap it, and write a note about how she is the best thing you've ever met. Moms love the mushy gushy stuff.

6. If you must stick with a card

At least hand make the card ;) Or do something a little more non-traditional like this mini succulent gift box and a handmade card.

7. Breakfast in Bed

If you live with her. If not, that could get a little weird. It's an oldie, but a goodie. Also, sorry to my mom who endured many (probably too many) years of the same breakfast in bed because we weren't creative enough to think of anything new....if that's you, try something different this year!