If you’re wondering how to find yourself again after becoming a mom, these tips and tricks will help you find your way back to feeling like yourself again.
While becoming a mom has been one of the greatest joys in my life, let’s be real, motherhood can absolutely rock your world.
Life as you once knew it is completely different and while most of it I’ve loved, I think many of us, myself included did grieve parts of our past life. I think that’s totally normal! We don’t get to travel as often, my extra cash is now tied up in daycare and swimming lessons, sleeping in is basically non-existent and my social life, well, it’s less of a priority.
When people ask me if going from 0 to 1 or 1 to 2 kids was harder, I always say 0 to 1. Adding a second kid changes so much, but at that point, you’ve already done the baby thing, the sleep deprivation, you mostly know what to expect. But that zero to 1 transition? Wow. No matter how many books you read, you cannot fully be prepared for life as a parent!
Let me be clear—I am not complaining. I love being a mom and just the other day I told my husband, Rob, that I really couldn’t imagine our lives without kids, but figuring out who I am after having kids has taken a lot longer than I expected.
It’s a total shift in your identity and I think it’s totally normal that it takes some time to sort out this new chapter.
My youngest is 2.5 and while I physically feel mostly like myself, there’s been this underlying feeling of—Who am I now? What do I do next? What do I even want to do?
What I’ve learned is that it’s absolutely a process.
Who I am today is not who I was even a year ago. I want different things, I prioritize different things, and in leaning into those desires, I’ve really started to find myself again. And, it’s a new me, a re-birthed version of who I already was. And, you know what? It feels good to be here!
But like I said, it’s a process to get there, so I wanted to share a few things that have helped me get back to being myself in hopes that it helps you too.
How to Find Yourself Again After Having Kids
Do Things That Make you Feel Like You
Yes, your role has changed, but one of the easiest ways to find yourself again after having kids is to lean into the things that you loved before. Maybe you find you don’t care for them anymore, but maybe you find that doing those things again feels totally fantastic.
Even if it’s an activity that only last a short period. Those little blips of normalcy can do wonders for your mindset and mood as you jump back into mom life.
Make Time for Friendships
A lot of friendships got pushed to the back burner during those early years of having kids. And, now that almost all of my friends have children, it can be so hard to find the time to meet up for coffee, dinner or some other fun activity between everyone’s conflicting schedules.
But, wow, if you put the effort in and make time for it, it is truly life-changing.
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This past year, I started saying yes to more outings with friends—dinners, drinks, walks, coffee, staycations, ski trips, etc. and it has been the biggest boost in finding my groove as a mom. Yes, sometimes I’m simply too tired and need a break, but I find that these things fill my soul up and energize me like nothing else!
Nourish Your Body & Mind
Which leads me to my next point. Motherhood is exhausting.
Breaks are rare and short-lived, and running through your days on an empty tank feels pretty awful. This is why you have to make your health—both physical and mental—a priority. When you feel good, you can show up for the other people in your life and actually show up the way you really want to.
This doesn’t mean you need to go on some crazy diet or start exercising for an hour everyday. Start small. Focus on eating whole foods that are nutrient-dense and leave you feeling energized, not sluggish. Get more sleep. And, move your body daily if possible. If you don’t have a lot of time, try Melissa Wood’s workouts—they’re short, usually less than 25 minutes, you can do them from home and they really help build strength. Plus it’s $10/mo—way cheaper than any workout class or gym!
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Daily movement has absolutely changed the game for me. I sleep better, I have more energy, I’m stronger and my mood is much better too!
You absolutely cannot pour from an empty cup. I, like some of you, wanted to do it all. I didn’t want to ask for help. I didn’t want people to think I couldn’t do it on my own. But the reality is that we were never meant to do it on our own.
Whether it’s a spouse, a friend, a parent—let them help and don’t be afraid or too prideful to ask for help when you need it. It is truly liberating to accept that don’t have to do everything on your own.
Outsource things that you can’t get to, or don’t want to do. For me, that’s cleaning the house. Hiring someone to come every other week was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. When you need a break, ask for one.
Try Something New
When you’re feeling like you’re not yourself, try something new. Is there a class you’ve wanted to take, or a skill you want to learn, or even a haircut you want to get but have been too nervous to try?
Why not go for it? Change can be scary, but it can also be liberating and exciting!
Expanding ourselves and giving ourselves time that’s just for us is so essential to finding that new version of yourself. We give so much to our kids and everyone else around us, it’s important that we allow ourselves that growth as well.
Be Patient with Yourself
I know I’m not the only one who felt like I lost my identity a bit after having kids. Even though my youngest is 2.5, I still feel myself evolving, changing and growing into this different person, and I’m loving it.
It doesn’t happen overnight and it might even continue for many years, but I hope this gives you hope that you will again feel like yourself, even if that person is different than the one before you had kids.
Allow yourself to grow, change, grieve, evolve and become the next version of yourself in your own time.
BTW, how to quickly build confidence in kids with these 7 simple practices, and 12 extremely clever parenting hacks you need to know.