Lindsey Bell is an up and coming new author, mother, fellow blogger, and one of my favorite people I’ve never met. (I’m convinced we will meet one day!) Today, I am honored to have Lindsey Bell guest post, and share about her newly released book, Searching For Sanity.
I’ve read a lot of parenting books, dozens of devotionals, and read through my Bible each year. Even still, Lindsey opened my eyes to new truths and ideas. Her writing is fresh, honest, and REAL. She writes as a friend and fellow warrior in this crazy journey called motherhood. You’ll nod your head along with her, stop to take a few notes, and then mull over your “aha moments.”
I highly recommend checking out her debut book! I am so proud of Lindsey, and can’t wait to see what God has in store for her.
Before I had children, I assumed I would love everything about being a mother. I expected our days to be filled with laughter, cuddles, and fun activities.
What I didn’t expect was to ever long for bedtime and count down the minutes until I could have some peace and quiet.
I love my children, of course, but there are times when parenthood is just plain hard. It’s on days like this I have to be intentional about finding joy. Here are a few things that have helped me enjoy my days as a mom:
How to Love Your Days as a Mom:
1. Keep your to-do list manageable.
As much as I’d like to believe I can run all of my errands for the week in one morning (and still maintain some sense of sanity), it’s just not realistic for me with my children. My boys have always struggled to sit still in strollers or carts, so lugging them around all morning long to
fifteen different locations is not a wise choice for our family.
Instead, I spread my errands out throughout the week and don’t pile too much into one day. When I do this, my children have much better attitudes. (And I, in turn, also have a much better attitude).
2. Start the day well.
It’s amazing to me how much better my day goes when I get up before my children, spend time in the Word, and get a few things checked off my to-do list.
Granted, on some days, it’s not plausible for me to get up before them (like when they decide to get up at 5 AM, for instance). On these days, it’s important I maintain a flexible attitude.
Otherwise, though, getting up before them, praying, reading my Bible, and maybe even enjoying a sunrise helps my days go much better.
3. Take time for yourself.
We all need time to ourselves. Time to read, cook, rest, exercise, chat with friends, get our nails done, or whatever.
Take time for yourself each week so you’re able to give your children the best mother possible.
4. Be present with your kids.
My distracted living began when I got my first iPhone. I felt drawn to it nearly all day long. I also felt my enjoyment of my children start to fade. I still loved them, of course, but I didn’t enjoy them as much.
About a year ago, though, I started being intentional about putting my phone down and getting on the floor with my kids. What I found was this: my enjoyment of my children grew as I spent undistracted time with them.
For me, there was a direct correlation between the amount of undistracted time I spent with my kids and the amount of enjoyment I received from them. The more time, the more joy and vice versa.
5. Practice having an attitude of gratitude.
After my husband and I had our first child, we expected everything to go smoothly with our second, third, and possibly even fourth children. Instead, I experienced four consecutive miscarriages.
These miscarriages, as heartbreaking as they have been, have done one helpful thing. They’ve helped me be extra-grateful for the one biological child and the one adopted child we do have.
On days when I’m weary and grumpy, I remind myself…Some women aren’t able to have any children. Some women would do anything to have the problems you have.
Gratitude isn’t something that always comes naturally to me. That’s why tip 5 is all about practicing. Do it over and over again, and eventually (at least I hope) an attitude of gratitude will become the norm…rather than the exception.
Let’s Talk: What helps you enjoy your days as a mom? Leave a comment to be entered to win a gift card from Lindsey for her blog tour contest!
This post is part of a Lindsey’s blog tour for Searching for Sanity, her new parenting devotional. You can read other posts in this tour by going to her blog: www.lindsey-bell.com.
About Lindsey Bell:
Lindsey Bell is the author of Searching for Sanity, a new parenting devotional. She’s also a stay-at-home mother of two, minister’s wife, avid reader, and chocolate lover. You can find Lindsey online at any of the following locations:
Her blog: www.lindsey-bell.com
Her website: www.lindseymbell.com
About Searching for Sanity:
Have you ever looked at your beloved children and wondered, what in the world am I doing? Why did God trust me—of all people—to raise them?
Motherhood is the most difficult job many of us will ever take. Searching for Sanity offers moms an opportunity to take a breath, dig into the Word, and learn from parents of the past. In short devotions designed for busy moms, this book uses the parents of the Bible—both the good and the bad—to inspire today’s mothers.
Thanks so much for having me on your blog! It’s an honor!
What makes my days as a mom enjoyable is that I take time to pray with him, smile at him, and spend time doing something he wants at least once a day.
Those are such simple things, but SO powerful, Stefani!
I think you’ve definitely got it – when I switch off from technology and my need to feel “connected” with the adult world, I connect with and enjoy my kids more. Which is actually more fun, as they’re not searching for attention, and so they’re also not as crazy. Loved this post, it made me realise I need to actively tune in to my kids more – thank you 🙂
It’s weird how that works, isn’t it? That we actually enjoy our families more when we turn off the things that distract us. I’m reading Hands Free Mama and loving it! It’s a constant reminder to do just that!
Lindsey, you are so right about getting up early. It has changed my day drastically to have time to myself each morning…even though it is incredibly hard to wake up sometimes! Also,I take time each day to do something kind for my husband. It helps to not put all my focus on my children and remember how important it is to invest in my marriage.
LOVE this, Rachel. You are so right. We moms sometimes focus so much on our kids that we forget about the man we married before having them! Great point!
I really try to maximize my morning in the Word, praying to God, and completing my Bible study for the day before the family wakes up. I tend to get lost online searching for all types of “ideas.” I am working on being “unwired” when my family is around that includes the use of the cell phone too. I want my daughter to know that I am paying attention to her and that I love her so the quality time spent together is a must! I am also showing more verbal gratitude for what God has provided our family. I want my hubby to understand that I truly appreciate his hard work as well.
I can get lost online too! SO easily. I’ve heard of some people actually setting a timer when they are online. I might try that:)
Tracey, you won the blog tour giveaway! Please email me at lindsey (dot) m (dot) bell (at) hotmail.com so I can get your gift card delivered!
Love your “attitude of gratitude”!