We all have moments where we don’t have as much confidence, or belief in ourselves, as we probably should have. We are often our own worst critic, and our negative internal voice can shake our momfidence (our mom-confidence) faster than a 2-year old can make a mess. “You should have made a healthier lunch,” . . . “you could have spent more time with the kids today,” . . . “so-and-so is doing a better job at this mom thing than you are” are all statements that can negatively affect your momfidence.
It is absolutely normal to have doubts or moments where you are hard on yourself. However, if you focus on those thoughts and don’t move on from them, then you run the risk of a momfidence drop. If you’d like to avoid a drop in your momfidence, you can make the choice to move on from negative thoughts and find ways to build up your momfidence instead of breaking it down.
When that negative or critical voice starts talking, try one or more of these ideas:
Just stop listening
Just like you might tune out someone else (like your kid asking you the same thing for the 100th time), practice tuning out your internal voice. Do this by distracting yourself with something you enjoy such as music, playing with your kids, or engage in one of your many daily tasks.
Change the thought
Instead of sticking with the negative thought that brings down your momfidence, work on adjusting it so that it’s more positive. For example, if you think “That lunch wasn’t healthy at all- momfail!” try to replace it with: “I fed my kids lunch today- they’re happy and I’ll be sure to serve veggies with dinner tonight.” Take the focus off what you think you did poorly and focus on what you did well.
Add more positive thinking to your life
You can start to quiet that negative voice by fighting back proactively with positive thinking. If you can start your day with some positive thoughts such as reflection of what went well the previous day, your strengths as a mom, or what you’re looking forward to about today, you prime yourself for more positive thinking. Throughout the day take moments to reflect on the good. Set a reminder on your phone if you need to.
Give your kids positive feedback
There are different schools of though on how much and what type of praise or feedback to give your children. However, consider the benefits: when we model positivity to our children, they are more likely to create positive thinking habits not only in what they think about themselves but also what they express to others. Additionally, if you provide positive feedback to them on a regular basis: what you enjoy, what they’re doing well, what you appreciate about them or the time you’re spending together, they will be more likely to talk in this way as well. And I don’t know about you, but hearing my son tell me how much fun he’s having with me is enough to knock out any thoughts I’m having that I’m not good enough.
Momfidence comes from many different sources, and we have more ideas to read in Part 2. In the mean time, look at momfidence as something that you can build, and take the time to create it. Try not to beat yourself up if you struggle- our thinking habits are often well-ingrained and take time to change.
Give these ideas a try. Did you notice a difference in your momfidence?
Posts and information on Get Mom Balanced are educational in nature and are not meant to be a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, diagnosis, treatment or care. If you have medical or mental health-related concerns, contact your personal health care provider without delay. See full disclosure for more information.