One of the hardest things about being a mom can be that we tend to put everyone else first. We take care of our family’s needs and help them with things they want to accomplish. But when it comes to pursuing our own dreams and goals we often let them fall by the wayside. There are simple steps that we can take though to reach our goals while rocking motherhood at the same time.
My best friend wrote a book. Like a whole well thought out book, with great characters, an exciting plot…. A really really amazing book. Annnnd She did it with a college-age daughter and three kiddos 7 and under at her house.
I have another friend who ran an ultra-marathon last year…not a regular marathon an ultra… because she’s badass. She’s got 4 kids including twin 5-year-old boys!
Other moms I know run successful online businesses have gone back to school to earn master’s degrees… the list goes on and on!
What do these moms have in common? They set goals, they did what they needed to do reach them, and they are amazing. They are also just normal moms, like you and me, juggling meal times, schooling, housework, laundry, but they went for something big and achieved it.
The thing about goals is they often get pushed to the back burner, they become daydreams of things we would like to do one day, maybe when the kids are older. We resign our selves to staying where we are because our lives as moms are dedicated to our families and sometimes pursuing our own thing feels selfish or time-consuming. We feel like by looking to accomplish something for ourselves we’re somehow taking away from our families.
But that’s not true. See the thing about having dreams, or big goals as a mom is that it is even more important to work toward them. We are an example for our kids if we want them to go big in life they need to see us doing the same thing! They need to see us improving ourselves, whether it be taking classes, getting fit, writing a book, or finishing that quilt we’ve been working on for 7 years. Whatever it is big or small your goals matter!
I get it though, finding the time and energy can be hard. Putting resources into your goals can be a challenge when you are juggling all the mom things at once. But you can do it!’
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Write them down- Ok this is pretty standard goal setting advice. Take pen to paper and write down what you want to do. Do you want to run a marathon? Write a book? Start a blog? Paint a landscape? Lose weight? Earn a degree? Seriously whatever it is, big or small write it down!
Set reasonable milestones- Now here comes the part where you tweak it around your life. Maybe you want to run a marathon. Start with a mile a day, work your way up to your first 5k, then a half-marathon. Break your big goal into smaller doable bite-size pieces. Be realistic about what you have on your plate and what you can do comfortably so that it doesn’t feel like a strain on other areas of your life.
Make time- This one is big. Take out your calendar and schedule time. Pretend it’s your kid’s doctors appointment, or lunch with a friend, if you wouldn’t flake out on those things don’t flake out on yourself. Even if you can only find 30 minutes twice a week start there. The important thing is to take the time, however long or short you have and set it aside to work toward your goal
Utilize technology– You know that cell phone in your purse, it’s not just useful for checking social media and texting your friends, there are also a million apps to help you reach your goals. You can find fitness trackers, book writing, and organizational apps that can help you stay organized and maybe even squeeze in a little extra time here and there to work on your goal!
Give yourself reminders – I’m a big fan of affirmations and leaving little notes for myself in places where I need them. Write yourself notes on post-its, stick them on your mirror, in your car, or on your computer. I have created some you can download and print if you want, I keep the one that says STAY FOCUSED on my computer so I don’t’ get sidetracked when I’m working.
Having little nudges throughout your day can remind you to stay focused and keep your goal at the top of your mind!
Get a partner – Often having someone else who is reaching for the same goal can help us achieve ours. Maybe you have a friend with a similar dream that you can be accountability buddies with, maybe your husband wants to get fit alongside you… whatever the case it is helpful to have someone in your corner walking the path with you. Even if their goal isn’t the same as yours just having a close friend to cheer you on and ask you how it’s going can keep you accountable and working toward your goal!
I understand when moms don’t feel like they have the time, are too tired, or spread too thin to focus on something for themselves but often chasing a big dream becomes a great kind of self-care that can make us better moms in the long run. When we feel fulfilled knowing that we are working on something that we’ve wanted to do it can inspire us in other areas of our lives!
So I encourage you to set a goal, write it down and start working on it today!