EDITOR'S NOTE: Diet-to-Go guest blogger Mia Redrick has made it her mission to help harried moms everywhere learn how to take care of themselves. Her first blog for Diet-to-Go was 5 Self-Care Resolutions. Today she turns her attention to helping you become a better mom... through group therapy that includes outings with other moms!
Being a Mom typically means that you're running a million miles an hour just to get everything done. Moms are the busiest members of the family because everyone else relies on them to help them look good, finish their homework, and -- in the case of the kids -- shuttle them around from place to place.
Add to all of that Mom's daily work, whether outside the home or inside, along with school activities, and Mom simply has her plate full.
With everything a Mom has to do to keep her family running smoothly, it's no wonder so many of us feel strained and simply stressed out.
Eighty percent of Moms do not take care of themselves... some even ignoring basic personal care tasks like going to the dentist, fixing their hair, or even showering. Few Moms take the time to go out with the girls or even relax by themselves in the bathtub for a few minutes. Some Moms don't even get to have any privacy when they use the restroom because the kids are always asking for attention.
Having your attention constantly commanded definitely takes its toll -- no matter who you are. So let's face it, Moms need a break.
So where do Moms turn when they need a sympathetic ear or just want to relax a bit? This is where "Mom Groups" come in.
Here are five benefits moms automatically get when they join a Mom group.
One of the reasons we, as Moms, tend to get so stressed out is because we feel as if no one understands us. We're partially right. There is no one who understands us living under the same roof, but there are plenty of other Moms in the community who know exactly how we feel.
Being part of a Mom group makes it easy to find a sympathetic ear on days when the stress level has gotten so high that you just don't know what to do.
Many women lose touch with their friends after they become mothers, especially if they are the first ones among their friends to have children. Joining a Mom group is a great way to make new friends you can go out and have a good time with or just relax with.
Plan some group outings for lunch, dinner, or anything else you all enjoy. Take a break and think thoughts that have nothing to do with your family... even if it's only for an hour. And always remember NO KIDS ALLOWED!
Whenever you consider various Mom groups to join, always look for one that has a good mix of mothers. You will benefit both from Moms your own age with children who are within a year or two of your children and also from Moms who are a few years older with children who are five to seven years older than your own children.
Moms who are a bit older than you will have plenty of helpful advice about situations they were in just a couple of years earlier. No offense but remember that your own Mom has not raised a child in 20 or 30 years, so her advice is quite dated. The best way to get advice is to ask someone who has been where you are just a couple of years ago.
Practicing self-care is not something that comes natural to Moms because we are preprogrammed to make sacrifices for our families. We often feel the need to drop everything for our children and forget about our own basic needs.
The moment we head out the door for lunch with the girls, we may get the sudden urge to cancel because our little one is upset or crying. But being part of a Mom group provides us with someone who will hold us accountable for our own self care. Only other Moms can recognize when we've had enough, and only they will remind us that we promised to get out of the house for an hour or two a few times per month.
5. Personal Growth
Often when we become mothers, we tend to forget about the things we once wanted to do with our life. Maybe we wanted to go back to school and get that Master's Degree, but we put that plan on hold "until the kids are older." The issue here is that this special day usually never comes.
When you join a Mom group, you find other Moms who will act as your cheerleaders when it comes to doing the things you want to do. Your husband may be a bit concerned about you going back to school, but the members of your Mom group will help you find practical ways to get it done without upsetting the balance of your family beyond what can be realistically managed.
You don't have to give up on your dreams just because you become a Mom. And belonging to a mom group is an important step to realizing this.
You can check around your community for Mom groups that fit the bill for you. Or you can take my advice. I always recommend "Time for Mom-Me" groups because they provide all of these benefits and more.
Each Time for Mom-Me group starts with a six-week plan to learn how to practice better self-care and continue taking care of yourself afterward. It's easy to start your own Time for Mom-Me group by visiting my website, TimeforMom-Me.com.
New Diet-to-Go blogger Mia Redrick is author of Time for mom-Me: 5 Essential Strategies for A Mother's Self-care and the creator of the national Time for Mom-Me support group. When you start a support group, you have access to a free six-week turn-key program that empowers you to create and grow your own community of mothers who commit together to make self-care a priority. Our mothers agree that when mothers are happier they are better mothers. For more information, go to www.timeformom-me.com