Mom Tip #2: Start Dating
Here are a few things we often hear moms say:
“My kids are my heart...my world...My entire life revolves around my kids.”
If you're a mom, you can probably relate. Whether you’re a working mom, SAHM, or WAHM you do everything you can for the health, safety, and happiness of your family. You either spend ALL your time (if you’re a SAHM) or all of your free time (if you are a working mom) with your children, because you want to soak up as much of their childhood as you can. But be careful that your kids do not become your social circle.
Our tip this week is to start dating—Mom Dates or Friend Dates to start building a support system--because you need it. Humans need contact with other humans(preferably the same size as themselves, Moms). You were created with this need. Your ancestors also relied on community. It is an inherited trait that you can’t fight. So don’t feel guilty for wanting social adult time with your friends, because you were made that way.
You need adult friendship and support if you want to present your best self to your children. Getting together with other adults can remind you that the world consists of more than your kids’ social bubble, or the stress you face at work, and that reminder will help you guide your children outside their bubble as they grow older and ready to face the world. So developing a support system is just as important for your health as it is for their future.
Here’s what you can do right now to implement this tip:
Plan a mom-date with another mom. --That's it! Text a friend you haven’t seen in a while. Hire a babysitter if you have to, and then instead of dinner, you and your friend go for a walk and you can shoot the breeze about whatever is on your heart.
If you haven’t done this in a long time, you’ll probably meet up with your friend and start wondering “what do we do now? What do we talk about?” Because you are pulled in so many directions at once, the opportunity to just focus on one or two—yourself and your friend—is going to feel like uncharted territory. But I also guarantee that by the time you leave, you will feel so refreshed and you will realize it wasn’t enough time, so you have to plan to do it again.
So before you part ways, take out your calendars and plan the next friend-date. It can be 3 months down the road if it has to be (because both of your schedules are so hectic). But make it untouchable time, etched in digital stone, so that nothing short of a plague can cause you to reschedule.
Adult friendship is nourishment to the heart and your heart needs food to fuel your crazy awesome life. So make a pact with yourself right now that you will pursue guilt-free friend time, and then reach out to a few women who could also use the support and schedule that next friend-date. Because your Mental Health Matters (and so does hers!).