Buy the Best Mom Ever Mug...For Yourself
I bought a Best Mom Ever mug...for myself.
We always talk about positive reinforcement with kids. We tell them they’re doing great, and we give them positive labels. We reward them for completing tasks and being kind. And this is a wonderful practice because research shows that positive reinforcement actually has a significant effect on children's behaviour, confidence, and sense of self.
But what about parents? Do we get to benefit from positive reinforcement, too? Do we hear words of love and positivity about ourselves?
If yes, awesome. If no, we're doing ourselves a disservice and it's time for some self-compassion.
While I generally don't make new year's resolutions, I made one at the beginning of 2020: to be kinder to myself.
I was spurred to make this commitment to myself because whenever I stepped back and analyzed my inner voice, I found that I spoke to myself quite harshly. I constantly berated myself for minor mistakes. I compared myself to other moms who seemed to be doing a "much better" parenting job than I was. I told myself if I wasn't living up to my own unrealistic standards, that I wasn't a good enough parent.
I was speaking positive words to my child, telling her she was kind, smart, generous, and a good helper...but when I turned around, almost in the same breath I was speaking negative words to myself.
It didn't make any sense.
It’s so easy to feel like the worst mother in the world when I compare myself to other moms. It’s easy for Mom Guilt to take up all the space in my head and leave no room for growth or self-compassion, or mercy.
It’s much harder to acknowledge the good. It's harder to look at the literal hundreds of tasks I do for my child each day and say to myself: you did good.
That’s what I’m working on now.
So I bought a "Best Mom Ever" mug for myself. I look at it every single day and nod in agreement. It's my positive affirmation, and it marks the beginning of a journey that I hope will be full of self-compassion and kindness.
And if you need to be reminded that you're the best mom your kids could ever have, buy yourself one, too.