“If Mama ain’t happy nobody’s happy!”
“If Mama ain’t happy nobody’s happy!” I’ve heard this expression multiple times and happen to agree with it. Many women are programmed to be people pleasers. If we don’t make everyone around us happy that means we fail. Not so! Everyone cannot possibly like you anyway. So don’t put on unrealistic expectations for yourself, setting a ground for inevitable failure. Moreover, when you try to please every one around you, even you own family members they may begin taking you for granted and even stop giving you respect you deserve for your hard work. Instead of being grateful they begin feeling entitled and expect your services and care. You may feel as underappreciated slave on many occasions. You may be positive you family loves you but their ignorant attitude hurts your feelings. When you feel run down and tired they do not run ahead of each other offering help. Why? Human nature. We get used to good and become expectant of it. You need to recharge your batteries because you can’t run on empty for long.
An attitude of pleasing everyone and neglecting your own needs can backfire when you least expect it. Especially when your children or husband anticipate you to take them places or wait on them when you are exhausted. Snapping back when you are at your wit’s end would only hurt everybody’s feelings. You need to prepare your way to a more pleasant life, better than a one of a hamster in a wheel! I do not mean that you just should neglect your family, I am talking about a healthy balance. You can not give out of yourself if you do not get refilled. I love to take care of my family but there are times when I simply need to rest, recharge and reflect.
Your loved ones might complain at changes that you need to implement. If you let things go for too long by putting everyone’s needs first they are most likely to complain. It is up to you to setup rules and follow them. Make sure to set your boundaries and sat “selfish me” time. It may be a walk, girl’s night out or bath. Many of my girlfriends complained that finding solitude in their own home is very challenging: everyone seems to need something exactly at the very time when mom is taking a bath or resting in a bedroom. When you are resting put a sign on the door “Do not disturb. I will not talk to anyone or come out till…” Fill free to put a time there. Or don’t. The thing is to set the rules and to follow through. Your kids will most likely test the waters and knock on the door or try to talk to you through the door regardless of what you said before. Don’t allow yourself to be provoked to do what they want- if it is not a real emergency it can wait. At first it may not be as relaxing as it should, but don’t give up. Turn on some pleasant music, close your eyes, smile and do not say a word. There were times when I retired to my bathroom simply to write. It was my solitude place, my time alone after a day of a full-time job, cooking, cleaning, running errands and taking care of my family.
Many women find it very beneficial to find uninterrupted time to think, to write, to dream. Regardless of the size of your family or your situation you can find time for yourself to rejuvenate. “But you don’t know what I have to face every day!” You’re right, I don’t. But God does–he gave you life and free will to make choices about that life. Choose wisely and enjoy your life to the fullest. You are a precious daughter of the King, after all.