What's in this post...
Being a modern day mom yields some pretty intense side battles. I’m talking about the things that you might not have considered before. Check out the struggles parenting this century really brings:
Have you every felt like life is a careening, runaway train? It’s gonna crash and you’re just sitting there watching it saying, “I guess this is the end.”
If this is what life feels like to you, I want to encourage you- you’re not alone. This is a common modern mom dilemma. Parenting this century has become so unmanageable.
I want to dig into “why” and talk about how to grab some of your life back.
There are too many opportunities for kids.
The number one reason why life feels so unmanageable for moms is there are soooo many opportunities for kids.
It feels like we’re letting our kids down if we don’t take every single one. This leads to feelings of guilt.
Even if you philosophically believe in having an “unbusy” life, you still have that hint go guilt. You may be thinking. “but could they be a professional athlete?”
I mean, it does happen…
There’s so many opportunities from such a small age. Babies can be in music and gymnastic class. Because life has so much to offer, we fell like we have to do it all. Let me say this…
You don’t have to do everything.
Honestly, young kids don’t even know what half of the opportunities are anyways. They don’t start asking to do these things until older anyways.
It’s the guilt that we feel because we see all these things and don’t do them that causes us to feel icky and unmanageable.
Bonus: Our cell phones take so much of our time. When we’re scrolling we see things that look important… and we end up feeling like we’re missing out because of them. This is one of the downfalls to parenting this century. It leads to a feeling of an unmanageable life.
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Our culture is so consumeristic.
Our modern life feels so unmanageable for moms because our our society is so consumerist. This sounds cliche, but having lived in other places (three different continents), I see that Americans put a lot more value in buying stuff.
In America, we can get massive amounts of things for fairly inexpensive. We tell ourselves that even though the house is a mess, we need to buy those “3M hangers that stick to to the wall.” Or, whatever else we see at the time.
We feel like buying things is going to fix our problems.
So, someone linked that “thing” and I can buy it and have it delivered in two days! Well, the symptoms here are our problem. Things just give us more to do, more to throw away, and more decluttering in the long run.
Instead of thinking, “I can buy something to fix a problem” try focusing on some thinking time. Sit down and take some notes. Try the bedtime brain release sheet, it’s a free printable… and it doesn’t have to be done at bedtime.
Don’t end the day with anxiety, stress, and a full mind.
This evening brain dump journal sheet will help you get in a peaceful mindset so you too can sleep peacefully through the night.
The reason that this concept matters is life will feel unsatisfied and unfinished with the need to always buy more. It’s one of the struggles in parenting this century.
If there’s always that “I need” in order to get where I’m going, we’ve moved away from…
I have all I need. How do I make it work?
Our brains are on information overload.
The third reason why modern moms are feeling so overwhelmed is that our brains are on information overload.
I remember growing up and only knowing what my close friends, family, and church friends were doing. Trends and fads were learned from places like summer camp. I remember seeing something I liked (like ombré shorts) and then wanting to go get them.
Now it’s completely different. Every trend or fad is at the tip of our fingers. This is largely because of our cell phones and social media. The info we’re seeing doesn’t just “go in and out” our brains…
The information comes into our brain and goes to the place in our mind that says, “you really gotta go do that for your kids!”
Now we feel nuts because we’ve had 75 things enter into our brain in the last 25 minutes… so we “escape to a life of scrolling.” Parenting this century will do this to ya’.
It’s feels like life is like an unmanageable careening train because there’s no way we can do all these things.
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Life requires a lot of micromanaging of our kids.
Life requires us to micromanage so much for our kids. Our society is set up for us to participate in every aspect, every detail.
The level to which you have to micromanage is insane.
Take your kids math homework for example. Sometimes the way it’s assigned is so that the kid can’t actually do it without your participation.
So much micromanagement is pushed on us. We don’t even want to do this. However, we feel like if we don’t, we’re letting out kids down. We have the propensity to want rescue our kids from…
- feelings of frustration
- any bad feelings
If “they are happy” then we are doings a good job.
This is a jumbled up mess. It’s a mess we fall into because we’re parenting this century. Think about it though… we have’t made irreparable mistakes because our kids are feelings things. It’s not supportive or healthy to need to rescue them from their feelings.
We try to micromanage so much. When in reality, it’s those moments where we support and validate that they are allowed go grow.
- “This is a tough situation. What do you think you should do?”
- “Ahh, man. I know it’s painful when someone is not nice to us. What can I do to help you through this?”
Sometimes my kids will tell me a situation and my first instinct is to leap in and rescue. Then, I sit back and realize that I need to just talk them through it. I validate their feelings and they are able to move past it so much faster.
Release yourself from the feeling of micromanagement. It prevents them from growing and makes life unmanageable.
We are creating routines that don’t align with our boundaries.
We are trying to create so many rules, routines, and habits…
But what if these don’t align with your needs and boundaries? I talk about this extensively in my book “If Mama Ain’t Happy.”
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The idea is that we actually need to know….
- what we need,
- like/dislike, and
- what parameters to set.
After this, we can set out rules and routines based on these boundaries.
Day-to-day habits should not be based on “random wants.” You gotta personalize this because your life requires different things than others.
Let’s say you’re starting a business and have set yourself some working hours. You’re going to get up early and stay up late. You want this, but your body is telling you, “nope.”
You can’t just tell yourself what you’re going to do and decide you’re going to be ok. I get the concept “mind over matter”, but you have to respect your needs.
Don’t arbitrarily make a bunch of random rules that sound good at the time. You gotta choose habits and routines based on what is necessary for your life to function, not what you saw on someone else’s social media.
Heaping guilt follows a mom parenting this century who doesn’t consider her own personality and boundaries when making plans.
Build out your family life routines from that place of self understanding and assessing your family’s personal needs.
We have an expansive mindset.
The last reason why life for modern moms seems unmanageable is because we keep trying to make life bigger.
The mindset is “go big or go home.” If it doesn’t make you scared, it’t not a good goal… or whatever.
I’m not saying we can’t have goals or strive to success. Furthermore, I am all for working hard. There is something to be said about having too much of an expansive mindset.
It’s not like we’re homeless and we want to have a house. It’s like we got a 2,000 square foot house and we want a 3,000. Now we have a 3,000 but it isn’t on the water.
On and on…
More and more and more…
It’s nearly impossible to be satisfied when we’re always aiming up.
- pinpoint an issue
- draw out how it’s affecting you
- label what you don’t like about it
- determine areas of responsibility
- figure out how it’s showing up
- say what you’d rather happen
- brainstorm solutions
I’m not saying to aim low or not seek excellence. While we are parenting this century, we need to be more focused on is…
- day-to-day moments,
- the little traditions,
- the small things,
- bedtime routines,
- talking with each other,
- taking a walk as a family, or
- playing aboard game.
The simple things in life are the things that matter. At the end of it all, this is what memories are going to consist of.
It is the simple moments with those we love that really matter.
When we keep trying to make life bigger, richer, or more, we are starving out the little moments that are going to make life matter later.
This is why life has become so unmanageable. It’s time to take it back. Take back our headspace. Take back the control over our lives and not give it away continually to unnecessary things.
When we start to live within our boundaries and limits, we slow the train down. We’re not careening out of control anymore and life become more manageable.