As loving parents, we are constantly in tune with our kids but when is it that we unplug from what doesn’t serve us, in order to recharge and rebalance ourselves?
Are they happy or sad? Did they have a good or a bad day at school? Are they doing better with their ADHD or with their social anxiety? Are the coping strategies supportive?
Did they eat enough? Dress warm enough? These loving connections can take over our lives and leave us spinning in overwhelm.
In the past 5 years of motherhood, I have realized that loving, supporting, guiding, and nurturing my kids is and will be the most important role of my life. Of course, there are many other roles I play. I am a wife, a daughter, a sister, a life coach, a neighbor, a friend, a daughter-in-law.
How to Unplug as a Parent?
We all play these roles in our lifetime. But the motherhood role, feels all consuming. Can we ever get a break?
After having my son, I spoke with my sweet neighbor about getting rest in about a year’s time. She looked at me and laughed, “My kids are in their 40’s now and I can tell you, I’m still losing sleep!”
Motherhood is one of my biggest fears because when you love so deeply and take on this magical role, it feels all consuming. And it easily becomes all-consuming unless we consciously unplug (not from our children – but from our role as mother).
How can we do this if we are so wrapped up in everything? And how we unplug?
Powerful Advice for Parents on How to Unplug from What Doesn’t Serve Them
We are in charge and there is always more work to be done? The list of to do’s goes on and on? Food shopping, therapy appointments, birthday parties, tutoring and bike riding. I know there is a lot to do.
I also know that we can’t do them with grace unless we take care of ourselves and sometimes this means letting go of all the parenting balls we are juggling. If you can’t fully relax, you can’t fully recharge and then you are operating on half empty and wind up exploding.
There has to come a time to put aside the question “what is best for the kids?” and tune into “what is best for me in this moment? What do I need? What would I love?” And then get quiet and slow down enough to listen to the answer.
I’d like to love myself enough to trust that I don’t deserve to be in a constant state of stress. That I am not the only one in charge, that I don’t need to come up with all the answers. I know that I, myself, have the power to change that by making different choices. In this moment, I get to choose, and I choose myself.
Rushing and checking items off a check list is not serving me. It creates stress in my already sensitive nervous system. As does squeezing in more than I can handle.
Making assumptions and thinking about the future doesn’t serve me. It adds fear and negativity by complicating the present moment leaving me energetically depleted and stuck in my head. Making something that happened with my children, husband, home, financial situation, or health mean that life is all good or all bad doesn’t serve me.
Instead of choosing all the things that I know do not serve me, I choose to recognize and lean on what has been serving me. I need to learn to unplug from it all.
Believing in a higher power serves me. It calms my nervous system and opens my heart to the limitless possibilities and love. Remembering that all there ever is in life is happening right now, in this moment serves me. It reminds me to be grateful and enjoy these precious moments with my family. That’s what it means to unplug.
Eating three meals a day, sleeping through the night (when possible) and taking breaks throughout the day, serves me. It helps me to function with more energy, clarity, and patience.
Realizing that we are all experiencing the ups and downs of life together and that I am not alone in my challenges with motherhood and humanhood serves me. I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this community and share what’s real for me.
If you connect to this piece, take the time to unplug and ask yourself what does and doesn’t serve me?
- Believe in a Higher Power
- Know What Supports You and What Does Not
- Live in the now
- Meet Your Basic Needs
- Community Connection
Right now, for me, to unplug means writing in sweats and my husband’s hoodie. It is sitting outside on the grass while knowing this moment of solitude may not last long. It’s realizing that I haven’t been very kind to myself lately. I have been rushing from place to place, skipping meals, taking care of the kids, the house, my work basically everyone else but me.