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Looking After Number One

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Keeping up with a seemingly never-ending list of commitments – school runs, work deadlines, dentist appointments, birthdays, laundry, homework, insurance renewals – whilst always looking insta-ready can leave anyone feeling overwhelmed and struggling to find time for themselves.

You want everything to be as close to damn near perfect for your children as possible, doing all you can to ensure their happiness and well-being, but how often do you stop to consider the toll it’s taking on your own mental health?

An often-touted rhetoric is Happy

SelfishMother.com
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Mum, Happy Baby though when you’re in the midst of life as a mother it can be hard to remember this, and sometimes, more difficult to believe putting yourself first is the right thing to do…

The best advice I was given as the mother of a newborn was to put my own oxygen mask on first. At the time it seemed impossible as every minute of my day was dedicated to this all-consuming, demanding little bundle of joy / devil incarnate (delete as applicable, depending on number of hours slept in the previous week…) but as he’s grown and I’ve become

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more confident in being a mum, it rings true every single day.

And this is important, not only for my wellbeing, but his too…

Researchers using data from the British Cohort Survey, which has tracked individuals born in 1970 throughout their lives, have investigated the family factors in childhood that influence life satisfaction in adults.

Having well-educated, involved parents with disposable income as a child certainly improves the likelihood of being a happy adult, but the single biggest family influence on a child’s longer-term life

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satisfaction?

Their mother’s mental health.

So the next time you meet a friend who has just announced a pregnancy or is deep in the trenches of toddlerhood or is struggling with the latest tween drama; that’s the greatest gift you can give her – assurance that looking after herself is the right thing to do – and offering to babysit would probably be a big hit too!

And you can’t give advice without first being willing to take it – so park your own mummy guilt and take some time out for yourself – it can be as lavish as a weekend

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away with the girls or as simple as finding 10 minutes to enjoy a cuppa alone and to smell the roses.

If it’s more than a just break you need, however, now is the time to speak up and look for help and support you deserve.

Prioritising time for yourself can be difficult to do but in years to come, your children will thank you for it.

SelfishMother.com
Lesley Henderson

By

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- 2 Mar 19

Keeping up with a seemingly never-ending list of commitments – school runs, work deadlines, dentist appointments, birthdays, laundry, homework, insurance renewals – whilst always looking insta-ready can leave anyone feeling overwhelmed and struggling to find time for themselves.

You want everything to be as close to damn near perfect for your children as possible, doing all you can to ensure their happiness and well-being, but how often do you stop to consider the toll it’s taking on your own mental health?

An often-touted rhetoric is Happy Mum, Happy Baby though when you’re in the midst of life as a mother it can be hard to remember this, and sometimes, more difficult to believe putting yourself first is the right thing to do…

The best advice I was given as the mother of a newborn was to put my own oxygen mask on first. At the time it seemed impossible as every minute of my day was dedicated to this all-consuming, demanding little bundle of joy / devil incarnate (delete as applicable, depending on number of hours slept in the previous week…) but as he’s grown and I’ve become more confident in being a mum, it rings true every single day.

And this is important, not only for my wellbeing, but his too…

Researchers using data from the British Cohort Survey, which has tracked individuals born in 1970 throughout their lives, have investigated the family factors in childhood that influence life satisfaction in adults.

Having well-educated, involved parents with disposable income as a child certainly improves the likelihood of being a happy adult, but the single biggest family influence on a child’s longer-term life satisfaction?

Their mother’s mental health.

So the next time you meet a friend who has just announced a pregnancy or is deep in the trenches of toddlerhood or is struggling with the latest tween drama; that’s the greatest gift you can give her – assurance that looking after herself is the right thing to do – and offering to babysit would probably be a big hit too!

And you can’t give advice without first being willing to take it – so park your own mummy guilt and take some time out for yourself – it can be as lavish as a weekend away with the girls or as simple as finding 10 minutes to enjoy a cuppa alone and to smell the roses.

If it’s more than a just break you need, however, now is the time to speak up and look for help and support you deserve.

Prioritising time for yourself can be difficult to do but in years to come, your children will thank you for it.

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Lesley Henderson

Mum of one, a British ex-pat living in Boston, with a 4 year old and barely there husband, juggling motherhood along with studying for a MBA.

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