Wondering how to be happy as a stay at home mom? This post has 15 tips for you!
Being a stay-at-home mom is hard. It’s challenging to be in charge of tiny little ones all day with no break and still a huge to-do list. You’re really doing an amazing job.
Let’s cover the unique challenges of being a stay at home mom. Then, we will cover 15 ways to be happy as a stay at home mom to help you find balance in your life.
What Are The Challenges Of Being A Stay At Home Mom
Before I get into tips and strategies on how to make the most of being a happy stay-at-home mom, I would be remiss if I didn’t say that there are challenges we all face.
Here are some challenges that stay-at-home parents face.
- Loneliness: When you are only with your kid(s) all day long throughout the week, life can get kind of lonely. Loneliness can lead to many other health problems, especially depression. Not only are you missing spending time with anyone over the age of nine, you could also be feeling a loss of self.
- One Income: If you are working at home without a side-hustle, that means you are most likely a one income household. While this is certainly doable, it doesn’t make life easy. Things like unexpected expenses or spontaneous treat days can cause a huge strain on your finances.
- Time Constraints: When you are a stay-at-home mom your day basically revolves around your child(ren). This doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t do things that you want to do. What it does mean is that you have to plan and prepare.
- Little/No Recognition: If you haven’t heard it yet, I’m sure you will sometime in the future. People don’t seem to realize how involved and exhausting being a stay-at-home parent really is.
- Making Time For Self Care: When you are at home going through a long to-do list, self-care can often get left behind. I’ve found that it’s helpful to schedule this time in on days/weeks when I know that I’ll be too busy to decide to do some self -care for myself randomly.
- Juggling Too Much: As I mentioned before, us moms have long to-do lists. It’s tempting to try to multitask thinking we can get it all done. This usually just leaves us burn-out though. With a child to take care of, that’s the last thing we want to be.
- Unexpected Responsibilities Of Taking Care Of Child: Sometimes things pop up like illnesses, or field trips and projects if you have a child in school, and other unexpected issues children have. It’s easy to let these situations shake us off course, but staying cool, calm, and collected is key.
15 Ways To Be Happy As A Stay At Home Mom
Now that I’ve addressed some of the biggest challenges of staying at home with your child(ren), it’s time to move on.
While being an at-home parent comes with a lot of stress, responsibility, and much more, there are ways to make the most of your time at home.
It can truly be a time that both you and your little one(s) enjoy. Here are some ways to be a happy stay-at-home mom.
Even if your plan is to stay at home all day, getting dressed feels like a fresh start.
When you start the day on a good note, odds are you are going to have a good day.
This one small act of changing your clothes can set that mindset in motion for you.
Another plus side is that if something does happen to come up and you have to go somewhere, you’ll already be ready.
Spend Time With Mom Friends
If you are starting to feel loneliness creep in, it’s time to get around some mom friends.
It can be the best thing for everyone because your kid(s) will have someone to play with and you will be able to have quality time with someone who is probably needing friend time just as much as you are right now.
Create A Me-Time Morning Or Night Routine
Whether you end your day with time to yourself, begin your day with time to yourself, or are lucky enough to do both, make sure you are intentional about it.
Your quiet time before the rest of the world wakes up, or after everyone goes to sleep can be some of your most treasured time.
It can be when you finally get a moment to think about that business idea, read that book, or simply just relax with a face mask on.
A pro tip is to consider whether or not you are going to have a morning routine or night routine based on your children’s habits.
For example, if you have early risers, you may want your me-time routine to be at night so you don’t have to get up even earlier.
Then again, if you are a morning person, maybe you wouldn’t mind that? It’s definitely something to think on.
Stick To A Daily Routine
Speaking of a routine, a great practice if you are at home with your kid(s) is to stick to a daily routine.
This way your little one(s) knows when it’s about to be nap time, or when it’s time to play quietly so mommy can get some work done.
A daily routine will help both you and them stay structured.
Give Yourself Grace
Being a stay at home mom has its perks, but there are also many challenges. There are many different opinions, studies, trends, etc. telling you what you need to do in order to achieve super mom status.
It’s unrealistic to assume that you can be the perfect mom in the eyes of every person all the time.
My advice is to not worry about being the perfect mom. Just be the mom your child(ren) needs.
The rest doesn’t matter. You’ll feel a lot less pressure this way and have a more positive outlook.
Prioritize Alone Time
Making it a point to have some self-care, alone time, me-time, whatever you want to call it, is a must.
Taking care of tiny humans is a demanding feat, although wonderful.
There is nothing wrong with taking time for yourself. Don’t let the mom guilt tell you otherwise.
The mom guilt will come, but there are ways to dismiss it. Prioritizing this alone time will not only help your mental health, but also your family well-being.
Find A Hobby/Passion/Side Hustle
You are more than just a mom.
The hobbies you enjoy, subjects you are passionate about, and even your side hustle also are what make you, you.
If you aren’t sure that you have any of these, it’s not too late to find one, or more.
Find something in your life that fills your cup other than your family. This is important for both you and them.
By seeing you discover and prioritize your passion, both your young kids and/or older kids will be inspired to also find their passions.
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help
When it all seems to feel a little too much, and even before it gets to that point, don’t forget to ask for help when you need it.
Whether that is getting a babysitter so that you and your husband can have a much needed date night.
Hiring a cleaning service so you can spend more energy on your kids, or finding a therapist to work through some mental health struggles you are having, all of these are examples of what you may need and not even know it.
While some may seem little, they can end up being a huge help to you and your family. Taking care of your needs is one of the most important things you can do as a mom.
You Don’t Have To Stay At Home
Just because you are a stay-at-home mom doesn’t mean you actually have to stay at home.
In fact, it would probably help both you and your child(ren)’s mental health to get out of the house.
There are many things you can do too. Schedule a play date at a park, go visit family if they live close, visit a museum, etc.. What can you come up with?
Change It Up Once In A While
I know through most of this article I’ve praised routines, and I still stick by the importance of a daily routine.
What I mean here by changing it up is that there are certain circumstances like celebrations, trips, or maybe random days you feel like doing something different, that don’t warrant sticking to a schedule.
For example, if your family took a trip somewhere and got home late at night, it’s okay to let your kid(s) sleep a little longer and adjust the to-do list for the next day.
This gives everyone a chance to get back into the swing of things of being back home.
Don’t Compare Yourself To Other SAHM or Working Moms
Comparison is the thief of joy.
When you think about it, no matter if you have a full-time job, have part-time work, or you are exclusively a stay at home mom, there is always going to be someone better than you and there is always going to be someone worse than you.
So why does it matter?
As long as your kid is growing up happy and healthy you are doing an excellent job. That is all you need to worry about.
Make Time For Exercise
It can be hard to find a time of day that works well to workout, especially if you have young children and little free time.
The best way to make your situation work for you is to bring your child into your workout with you.
Whether they are “working out” beside you, helping you count reps, there are ways to involve them in what you are doing in a fun way. There are many other great ideas to get a workout in as a busy stay-at-home mom.
Let Your Partner Have Time Alone With The Kids
You want to make sure your kid(s) are bonding with their other parent as well.
That can be hard to do when you are alone with them almost all day everyday, which is why it’s important to let your partner have alone time with the kid(s).
Not only does this give them their special bonding time, it also gives you a break. It’s a win for everyone.
Split Responsibilities With Your Partner
Make sure that you and your partner are both clear on who is responsible for different household duties.
They should know that just because you are at home doesn’t mean that you have time to do everything.
However, they should be able to count on you to do what you say you are going to do, just as you should be able to trust your partner to do what they say they are going to do,
Redefine Motherhood For Yourself
If you are a new mom, you may be caught off-guard with how motherhood is feeling right now – that’s okay!
Thanks to social media, movies/TV, magazines, etc. it’s easy to get an image of what being a stay-at-home mom will look like in your head.
When that image isn’t what your reality looks like you may get discouraged. Let me leave you with this encouragement:
Motherhood is different for everyone, whether you are a working mom, a stay-at-home mom, or somewhere in-between. We each have our own style of parenting that we have picked up through learning, watching, and experiencing. Just because you do something different than your mom friend does, doesn’t make you any less of a mother to your child(ren).
In Summary: How To Be Happy as a Stay at Home Mom
Being a mom, however that looks for you, is never easy.
At the end of the day, there are always going to be challenges that we don’t know how to approach.
You’re doing a great job! Even when it doesn’t feel like it.
I hope these tips bring a smile to your face and a little more joy to your days. Let me know which tip is most impactful to you in the comments below.
The photos in this post are by Olivia Bush Photography.