Mother: only one word, so many meanings. Whether you are a working mum or a stay-at-home mum, your jobs and tasks are endless and don’t lack in variety. Caregivers, cooks, cleaners, psychologists, chauffeurs, doctors, managers, hairdressers, dieticians, accountants, teachers, waitresses, maids and nurses are just few of the roles we take on daily.There just aren’t enough hours in the day, we just don’t have enough arms to handle all the things we have to do. However, what we mastered is improvisation and lateral thinking, so let’s put that multitasking brain of ours to work, and figure out how to keep our sanity!

Where to start from? Well, let’s start from the basic:

Humor helps! Make sure you do everything with a smile – and humor! The alternative sucks.

Be realistic. This is a very important step. Most moms in their hard effort to multitask and be time effective at the same time, they lose sight of what is realistically possible and what is not! Keep it real.

A happy family is more important than a clean house. Make this, one of your family’s rules and don’t ever forget it. Moms who spend all of their day cleaning, miss out on valuable bonding time with their children and fill themselves up with unnecessary stress that spreads out to the rest of the family.

Listen to your children. You have heard it a lot: ‘my child is crying all the time with no reason’, you have probably  said it yourselves, too. There is always a reason! Try to empathically and mindfully listen to your children. Find out what makes them happy and sad, what bothers them and what gives them pleasure. If your child needs to talk to you and you are busy, plan a ‘chat’ time beforehand.

Compromise! You don’t have to be perfect at everything you do, nor do you have to fit under the ‘supermom’ label. Only you know what’s more important for your family and you are not asked to reciprocate to other people’s criteria. You don’t have to exhaust yourself making the birthday cake – just buy one!

One step at a time. Planning in advance helps; stressing out in advance doesn’t! Organize a day at a time, things will seem and feel more doable (Read: ‘Moms’ Secrets #2: Organize’).

Choose punishments wisely. If you deprive your children from watching TV on a Saturday morning  then you automatically also punish yourselves. Punishment should be effective, short and carefully thought of. Don’t make things harder for yourself.

Always have a baby/children’s bag in the car. Besides the apparent such as nappies, bottles, pacifiers, sun-cream and wipes, make sure you also include a quick change of clothes, extra pair of socks, underwear and a few snacks such as biscuits, juice etc. It will really come in handy in regular ‘panic’ situations! (Read: ‘Moms’ Secrets #3: Time Management and Family Rules’).

Read up on child development. Although every child might reach each developmental milestone at their own pace it is important to have a basic idea that a five year old, for instance, can dress on his own.

All wonderful moms around the world – relax!! Rome wasn’t built in a day and you cannot fit a 70 hour schedule in the same day either! I promise I will provide you with some very practical ideas and tips to make your parental life  easier and you feeling more chilled out and loosen up. Till next time.
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Psychologist, world citizen, mother - Effie is one half of the alwaysladies.com founding pair. She can bring to life any party with either a smile, or a strong opinion. If like us you can't get enough of Effie, visit her blog at www.thethinkingmomblog.com

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