I don’t think I have ever met someone who didn’t want to have a little more calm in their life, and I certainly have never met a parent who doesn’t want to nurture a calmer culture at home.
But often, these things can be hard to actually put into practice. As parents, we find ourselves regretting our interactions with our kids. As they walk away from me at school drop off, I run through my head how many times I rushed and snapped at them that morning. At night, I lie in bed thinking about how the sweet bedtime rituals always have a cranky encore, usually brought on by the need to rehydrate after lights-out.
It’s horrible, thinking about how you could have handled something differently. It hits you right in the feels, and that’s why I am collecting a list of parenting mantras to help me mindfully approach those reoccurring daily pinch points.
If you have little kids, about seventeen hours of your day is probably spent waiting. It’s true. Waiting for them to climb into the car, put on their shoes, get out of the bath – I could literally go on forever.
So during all this waiting, say to yourself; this is the perfect time to slow down and breathe. And unsurprisingly, those times of frustration are exactly when mindful breathing is going to work its magic.
This mantra is one that I used daily when the kids were toddlers. You know those days that NOTHING in their world is ok. The cup is the wrong colour; their socks feel weird; they keep dropping their food or crying about every little thing. Say to yourself. Parenting mantras
They aren’t giving me a hard time, they are having a hard time.
It won’t make you happier or calmer to know that they are having a hard time, but it might give you that perspective switch to stop focusing on your frustration and help them address theirs.
This parenting mantra is for those times that you feel SO overwhelmed that you don’t know where to start. And I read it in this viral Facebook post by Sabrina Rogers-Anderson. It’s all about surrendering to each moment, even the monotonous ones.
Rock the baby to rock the baby. Parenting mantras
I am often critical of the pressure on mothers to enjoy every moment – those quaint quotes about the washing and cleaning can wait, because ‘babies don’t keep’ can be frustrating at best and harmful at worst. It’s impractical to ignore the minutia of daily parenting life, and that’s a narrative I would NEVER endorse – but I absolutely believe in the benefits of surrendering to the task you are doing completely. Not positive, not negative, just… doing.
We often remind our children that all they can do is their best, if only we reminded ourselves of this as much. So when you feel that guilt creep in, when you aren’t sure if you are meeting all the needs of the kids and the insane standards you have set for yourself, just repeat.
I am doing my best. Parenting mantras