Staying motivated as a single mom is tough. When you are surrounded by so many societal norms and prejudices, you are bound to feel judged and it could leave you anxious.
Our society sees single moms with a very different perspective, but the struggle and challenges a single mom goes through while raising her child are the same as a married one, the only and major difference is they are on their own.
There is some irony about this day, it’s my 10th wedding anniversary day today and I am writing a post as a single mother. Little hard to go through this process but I have to. So in this blog, I will share a few insights which will help someone stay motivated as a single mom.
Staying motivated as a single mom and living your life your way
There exist countless women who are working hard to find their purpose in life irrespective of whether they are single or married. The struggle is for real and motherhood itself comes with unique sets of challenges for each woman. To top it, there are several social stereotypical belief systems that leave a woman rattling and anxious to find her way to life. There are a few major challenges a woman faces while staying motivated as a single mom.
Five challenges a single mom face in her daily life
There is this very sickening mentality of judging single moms on her every step. How can you judge something you don’t understand? How can you judge a woman on her choice of living? How can you judge when you don’t care about the facts, here are five heart-breaking challenges a single mom goes through but society and her so-called relatives and friends give a shit about it.
|2.) Financial stress|
|5.) Toxic Positivity|
Yes, she is lonely as hell. She is on her own now, it doesn’t matter how toxic her relationship was with her in-laws or how much stress her husband gave her, she had a life once, a full family and now all she has is her children and the worry about there future.
2.) Financial stress
Sometimes even when both the parents are working many families face financial issues, crises, and challenging situations. Now imagine a woman that too a single mom in this patriarchal society where salary is also gender-based, she has to manage her kids, look after herself and fulfill every need on her own, so this is why sometimes staying motivated as a single mom is difficult.
Finding her purpose as a married woman was making her clueless about life and now she has to live a new life with very limited options and she has to share her kids with her spouse, let them meet him and the fear and insecurity in her makes her feel helpless. She cannot do anything about it, but hiding her insecurities and not feel anxious about it becomes really challenging.
While managing everything on her own, being judged at every step, she might try to be strong and show that she doesn’t care but sometimes she cares a lot, and to such an extent that she starts doubting her self, her ways of dealing with situations and even her decision making ability, which fills a sense of guilt and dejection inside her.
5.) Toxic Positivity
Just because she is expected to stay strong and positive all the time, she cannot even cry and feel her feelings. Sometimes all you need to do is acknowledge your feelings and cry it out, to feel lighter, to feel yourself but due to toxicity, she turns irritable, short-tempered, and again gets criticized for being like this.
11 Terrific Ways For Staying Motivated As A Single Mom
How staying motivated as a single mom is possible when there lies a lot of stigmas attached to it, which is difficult to shake but when we cannot control what’s happening outside we can simply turn inside. People around you will always make you feel guilty conscious by saying things like children are better off being raised by two loving parents and your child will miss the father etcetera. But you do what you got to do. What do we do when a piece of machinery doesn’t perform, what do we do when our remote control doesn’t work? We replace it, right? That’s what we need to do with our thought process and our pattern of reacting to things around us and here is how we do it:
|1.) Take frequent breaks|
|2.) It is ok to be imperfect|
|3.) Focus on raising a happy child not a perfect one|
|4.) Stay away from toxic people|
|5.) Surround yourself with like-minded people|
|6.) Learn to own your decisions|
|7.) Learn to let go|
|8.) Make your mental health your priority|
|9.) Pursue one hobby|
|11.) Yell, when you need help|
1.) Take frequent breaks
As a single mom, your life is not easy and all the people around you will either put victim labels on you or a badass label. But only you know your journey, which you don’t have to explain to others.
With kids around it becomes difficult to vent out all the anger and frustration, make them sleep, vent out your anger, cry out loud. Take a breather and feel lighter.
2.) It is ok to be imperfect
I am a mother too, I have an almost seven-year-old sweet daughter, who brightens up my day. There are days I don’t feel like doing anything and just want to sleep cuddling with my baby, just want to sit beside her and watch her favorite cartoon shows. I feel okay-ish and she feels super joyful and that makes a perfect us.
3.) Focus on raising a happy child, not a perfect one
Staying motivated as a single mom is possible when you overlook perfectionism and go with the flow. mothers and children are co-learner, we teach them life skills and they teach us to be patient and compassionate. Enjoy this journey as a mindful parent and see things as it is, takes one thing at a time. Deal with one day at a time.
4.) Stay away from toxic people
Toxic people are like energy vampires, they suck all your positivity and leave you lifeless. It could be your toxic in-laws who bother you or your relatives or your friends who demean you, judge you, and lack empathy when it comes to understanding your situation, so it is better you stay away from them till you gain the strength to deal with them. It will only help you to preserve your sanity.
5.) Surround yourself with like-minded people
When you are surrounded by people with a similar mindset and especially the ones who are going through the same situation as yours, the conversations become easier. If staying motivated as a single mom is becoming overwhelming then look in a different direction and you will see women in miserable conditions than yours and looking at their courage to carry on, you will find life’s amazing secrets to hold on to and gain strength when you don’t feel like moving on in life.
6.) Learn to own your decisions
One of the biggest challenges of a single mom is that they are on their own and they are responsible for every move they make. Sometimes their decision-making ability hinders their path because they already feel pressurized due to the judgment mongers hovering over her life, who will leave no occasion to put her spirits down. But the day you will gain the strength to withstand your decisions, they will be quiet, they will get the message.
7.) Learn to let go
When you step out of marriage, forcefully or willingly or you lose your husband untimely, only you know that what you did was the best you could do for yourself. So stop feeling sorry about it. The day you start seeing it as a chapter of your life, which taught you a lot of things, you will gain all the wisdom and courage to let go of all the bundled up emotions and grudges attached to that relationship. Learn to let go as it will put you at ease with your past.
8.) Make your mental health your priority
You have your future, you have your kids and you will not be able to pour with an empty cup. Take care of your mental health and nurture it with all the coping mechanisms you can, being emotionally vulnerable is absolutely fine, being sensitive is fine but not doing anything about it is not fine. You have to stand for yourself and it begins with your mindset.
9.) Pursue one hobby
We all have that one thing which brings immense pleasure to us unfolds childhood memory, and adds a spark to our eyes. All we need to do is follow it. Pursue a hobby that makes you feel alive, enables your creativity, and puts you at calm.
I made yoga, meditation, cycling, and some stretching exercises a part of my life and it helps me a lot. I don’t focus on losing weight although it is a part of it. But all I focus on is to lose the weight on my mind, release all the pilled up toxins and get some freshness in my body. I nurture myself and I love to connect with my body, please start nurturing your body, you will be grateful.
11.) Yell, when you need help
There would be times when you will feel that you are losing your mind, anxiety, and stress would become too much to handle. Know that it is normal, even couples in happy marriages go through such a stressful situation in their married life, so please do not strain yourself, just talk to someone. Do not hide your scars, heal them, and in the process, you will learn to release all the tensed muscles and dense emotions you have been holding up for long.
In the end, I would say that perfectionism is a myth and the process towards perfectionism is all that shapes us. Do not focus on what others say, do what you know is the best in your capacity. Do not explain your reasons to others, work on yourself, and channelize all your energy into your kid’s development.
Staying motivated as a single mom would become easy when you will empower yourself with all the things you are grateful for. Count your blessings and move ahead with your head high.
Positive parenting involves happy parents and to raise your child happy, you need to focus on your happiness too. So make your mental wellness your priority and keep choosing you daily. Lots of love.
Priyanka Nair is the author of 26 Days 26 Ways for a Happier you and Ardhaviram. An NLP practitioner and Founder of Sanity Daily, helping you prioritize your mental health. Let’s build a happy community.