Parents want to do the best they can when it comes to their kids. The majority of our time and effort goes towards supporting and taking care of our children. We work hard to make sure our kids are happy and healthy. Why do we often end up feeling like our best efforts still aren’t enough?
Here are some tips that can change your perspective and help you realize that you are enough for your kids.
Stop the Comparisons
The biggest trap parents fall into is comparing yourself to others. This is unfair because no two parents are the same and no family situation or child is the same. What works for you may not work for another family and each family’s values, dynamic, and interests are different. Because of this, comparisons are not worth worrying over. In the age of social media, it can be hard not to think everyone has a picture-perfect life but it’s important to remember that social media only shows you a picture, often staged and filtered, and is not a true reflection of their daily lives.
Sometimes we all need to give ourselves a reality check. Remember, all siblings have conflict, all kids throw tantrums, all houses get messy, and all parents get tired. Things are never perfect for anyone. It is wise to remember this when you start to get down about a situation that is making you feel like you aren’t enough. Reaching out to a friend, you will often find that they too experience similar situations. It is nice to have the camaraderie that comes from knowing that they are experiencing the same battles in their life too.
Do What You Love
Some people are great at interior design, some love craft projects, others have culinary skills, and still others are efficient and organized. We may strive to be the best at all of these things to our families, but it usually doesn’t work out that way. Focus on what you love and enjoy those things with your family. There is no reason to beat yourself up over things you do not enjoy. Sometimes when I feel like my best is not enough it is because I put too many expectations on myself. I do not enjoy craft projects, so why do I feel the need to do them with my kids? I do enjoy cooking and having my kids help me. If I choose the activity I enjoy more, my kids get quality time with me that we both enjoy. Be honest with yourself about your expectations for your kids and for yourself. Do your best with what you have and enjoy it along the way.
Count Your Blessings
One way to change your perspective from negative to positive is to start counting your blessings. It is so easy to focus on negatives when the great things going on in your life are passing you by. Start by listing five blessings per day. Write them down. When you are feeling down go back and read them and you will most likely feel an attitude boost in no time.
Your Child Loves You
One of the most important things to remember is that your kids love you. Even when you are tired, overworked, overlooked, and feel like your best is not enough, your kids will love you anyway. They love spending time with you. They love your gifts and quirks. They may not always act appreciative or show their love in an obvious way, but they do love you. The consistency, support, and love that you show them every day does not go to waste. It is enough.
Sarah Lyons is a freelance writer and frequent contributor.