Motherhood can be demanding and you need to take care of yourself to maintain the inner glow.
Within six months of the birth of her twins, Priya, a 31 year-old mother started to feel that her kids were a burden. Her husband’s job did not give him enough time to help her out at home and Priya was getting bogged down with the constant pressure of motherhood. She lost interest in physical intimacy with her husband and felt that she was suffering from a burnout.
Nirali Arora, a mother of a three-year-old boy started to develop guilt pangs. She felt bad about the fact that she craved to spend some time on herself. She believed that it was wrong to want to spend time away from your child, it was wrong to want to go out with her friends. Was she being a bad mother? The above cases depict the emotional turmoil that new mothers sometimes feel. They go through a burnout phase. Life after having their kids seems to be guided by their children. The spark that makes each individual special sometimes simmers down a bit during these demanding phases of parenting. Experts say that it is extremely essential to protect it and keep the inner spark glowing.
You should be kind to yourself and understand that you will take time to adjust to your new life as a mother. Your expectation of yourself as a mother should not be unrealistic, because, if unfulfilled, it can be disappointing. Learning to deal with the exhaustion, loneliness and the feelings of inadequacy will go a long way— they are not very uncommon and mothers should spare themselves the pangs of guilt during this adjustment period.
Clinical psychologist Seema Hingorrany suggests, “Sometimes a part-time job helps. Or you could plan a lunch date with your close friends, or visit the gym. An hour of yoga or a session of swimming, or even just a few hours of shopping will work too. You need to have an isolated boundary called psychological autonomy. Your ‘me’ time is vital. It is therapeutic and you will feel satisfied and in turn this positive feeling will be transferred to your spouse and kids.”
Dr. Kanan Khatau Chikhal, also a clinical psychologist, elaborates, “A woman or a mother has been the nurturer through the collective consciousness. Holographically as well, she is seen as a nurturer. A father is the provider. Yet each mother needs to remember that she is an individual before she is a mother, a wife or a sister. Now with changing times, a woman can surely be the nurturer and the provider. But since in our deeper mind we are programmed only for healthy nurturing anything beyond that appears to the body and the mind as a burnout. It is essential that each mother remembers that she receives the nurturing and the providing energy from the universe, like mother earth or the sun. Each day as she wakes up she only needs to channelise this energy with positive affirmations and then there will be no burnout.”
Dr. Chikhal feels that every mother has an agenda to fulfil — she wants her child to get ready, eat, sleep at a certain time and these are labelled as discipline. She says, “The mother needs to understand that a child has a mind of its own and when she allows the child within her to resurface, enthusiasm naturally follows and there is no burnout. Only when you have an agenda will there be problems. Nonetheless, a mother does need to pamper herself. A combination of ancient knowledge and modernity is the solution. She should join support groups and meet other parents, assign roles at home and it will help.” Taking good care of yourself will make you a better mother, but it’s also important to acknowledge that you deserve to be well-cared for, for your own sake.
Positive affirmation for mothers:
You creator, are my nurturer and my provider and it is with this energy that I will healthily provide for my child. Tips to deal with burnouts:
– Go back to your hobbies.
– Pay attention to yourself and do something that you love.
– Attend to yourself.
– Build a strong reservoir of energy with enough sleep, good nutrition, and medical care.
– Reclaim your mind space.
– Write in a journal, get back to playing the piano or guitar, or just take a nap.
– Take a spiritual break.
– Worship communities and spiritual groups may provide the best opportunity for a quiet time.
– Utilise your creativity.
– Play make-believe games or do projects with your children to recharge your batteries.
– Opt for teamwork.
– Enlist family teamwork from day one and bring the children into the circle of family responsibility.
– Do not stop investing in yourself.
Be prepared to take your career into your own hands if necessary. Keep in touch with your professional contacts, credentials and identity.