When working with mothers, I hear many stories about how motherhood can be very overwhelming. They’re submerged in fear and guilt while feeling utterly exhausted and constantly anxious. In this article, I’m revealing the most effective mindset switches to avoid feeling trapped as a mother.
There is so much pressure women feel not only as working mothers but as a stay at home mothers too. We cook and clean (constantly) we’re taxi drivers, we manage finances and pay bills among so many other things. Mothers these days wear many different hats.
We’re not just sitting at home taking care of our babies, we are also managing a household, trying to find time to ourselves and to do the things that make us happy. We’re trying to maintain friendships and not completely neglect our love life. The pressure and weight of it all can be overbearing and this is when we start to feel trapped like there is no way out.
As a mother, it’s not uncommon to feel ‘trapped’ in fact, it’s pretty easy. Even if you made a conscious decision to have kids, you can at times feel resentment and even anger for how your life became what it currently is… and let’s be honest, sometimes it’s a shit show!
With the daily monotonous tasks, you can’t help but feel like Bill Murray from Ground Hog day. There are times I feel like I’m losing the absolute plot because of the sheer boredom of the same old shit different day routine that wears me down. I often think to myself that this is not what I signed up for! And when the resentment and anger surface the culture of my family becomes unpleasant. And then everyone suffers from my bad mood. Sound familiar?
It’s very common for mothers to feel stuck within our current circumstances, believing that nothing can change. It’s frustrating to feel like your life is no longer your own. I remember standing at the kitchen sink with my baby in his high chair, watching my husband casually stroll out to the car to head into work… Geez in those moments I resented him so much. He got to leave the house, by himself, sit in peace, feel completely free while I stood barefoot washing the dishes.
I wanted to break free! I wanted to go to work, I wanted to get dressed and put makeup on and feel valued as an employer, I wanted to earn my own money and to contribute to my family financially, I wanted to get in the car and drive with the wind in my hair! Cue… Queen, I want to break free!
From household duties to giving your children and partner attention, the push and pull can all get too much. Motherhood is monotonous, the daily routine, the repetitiveness of the essential daily activities such as vacuuming and mopping the floors, making the beds, preparing meals and snacks and bottles, washing the dishes, putting the dishes away, doing the washing, hanging out the washing, folding and putting away the bloody washing, putting up with the same tantrums at bedtime, only having to wake up and do the exact same shit the next day and the next day and the next day…. You get my point. Because if I didn’t do it who would?
Feeling trapped by motherhood can happen at any stage, whether you’re at home with a newborn or you have kids in high school.
As long as we know we’re trapped, we still have a chance to escape.
Now, I want to make one thing very clear. I absolutely adore my kids and my family, I love being a mum like I’m sure you do too. I’m extremely grateful. But hey, there comes a time when it’s more than ok to acknowledge how we truly feel at times, without being judged or shamed in doing so. Bottling up how we feel is not healthy for anyone. Motherhood is messy and some days just really suck.
I get it, gratitude does not take away your exhaustion, but it helps to know that life will not be this way forever. Ask yourself, how do you want your kids to remember you? What memories will surface when they look back at the kind of mother you were? Were you quick to anger? Didn’t tolerate mess? Had very rigid rules and routines? Had no time to play?
While rules, routines, and a clean house are important, it helps if we can be flexible and go easy on our selves from time to time.
I’m glad you asked, simply put, mindset is our set of beliefs that we have about ourselves. Your mindset will determine how you see the world around you as well as how you see yourself. By cultivating a ‘growth’ mindset you’re able to make improvements in your life, therefore creating motivation. Carol Dweck, Standford University psychologist determined after decades of research that a person’s success in life is largely based on whether they have a ‘fixed’ or ‘growth’ mindset.
If we have a fixed mindset we believe that our potential is limited or fixed. For example, with a fixed mindset, we have the belief that we are capable of doing something or we are not. This gives us little motivation to grow and move forward.
However, if you can learn to adopt a growth mindset you will not limit yourself, you’ll hold a belief that your potential, skills, and choices are changeable and can be cultivated. Therefore creating a love of learning and building resilience that’s essential for great achievement.
You have the power to change your thoughts and your thoughts have the power to change your life.
Let’s get into how you can switch your fixed mindset to a growth mindset so that you can start embracing the challenges of being a mum, to stop feeling trapped by motherhood!
I do not fix my problems. I fix my thinking, then problems fix themselves.
So, it seems that feeling trapped as a mother is a real thing, that many if not all of us feel trapped at some stage on our journey through parenthood. Changing your mindset won’t happen automatically, it’s a conscious choice to want a better outcome for yourself. You need to believe that you can choose and that you’re capable of change.
What’s currently holding you back from living a life that you are truly proud of?
If you have any questions if you’re feeling trapped as a mother, or just want to say hi you can contact me here. I love hearing from you!
Mind Heart Space, cultivating self-awareness, resilience, and well-being… Mindset vs Mindfulness.
Retrieved from: https://www.mindheart-space.com/single-post/2016/07/17/Mindset-vs-Mindfulness