How to Not Be So Hard on Yourself
We’ve all had those moments where you’re like, “this week I’m going to be good-I’m going to workout everyday, not drink, eat healthy, clean the house and stay focused on my work!” How does it usually pan out? Hmm, fast forward to you sitting on the couch at 11pm with ice cream in hand after a bad day. From there on it’s just a downward spiral. And, to be honest, lately I’ve had more days like this than I care to admit!
So why do we do it? Because we’re human. And, in that moment, if feels so right, doesn’t it?! It’s not until afterward that we feel guilt. But, beating yourself up doesn’t do you any good and will just make you feel worse when you “fail”, at least that’s what I’ve learned from my own experience.
This phase of my life has been a series of highs and lows and I’m sure any new mom would tell you that’s normal, but adjusting to everything isn’t always as easy as you might think. Over the past few weeks, I’ve really just tried to let my frustrations go (did you read last week’s post on prioritizing my own happiness and health?). Here are a few tips for not being so dang hard on yourself!
How to Not Be Hard on Yourself
Give In Occasionally
It’s not normal to not have a bad day every once and a while. That’s okay! And, in that moment, letting yourself have that glass of wine, scoop of ice cream or good cry with no guilt, will make you feel a little better. If you feel the guilt creeping in after splurging, just make sure to drink a big glass of water than night and start the next day fresh! Remind yourself that your’e human and not every day can be perfect!
Take a Few Deep Breaths
When I find myself getting worked up because Owen wakes up 30 minutes into his nap—again—I close my eyes and take a few deep breaths. Just taking those few quick moments is what I need to remind myself that he’s a baby, my work can wait and to just do the best I can.
I need this reminder plastered on my mirror every morning! I love being productive and getting stuff done, I don’t know why, but it just fills my cup! So, when it doesn’t happen, it really gets me bummed out. Lately, I’ve had to remind myself to be realistic. What can I actually accomplish today? Maybe that’s just a load of laundry, tidying up the living room and answering a few emails in between caring for Owen. No, it’s not as much as I would like to do, but when I give myself manageable goals for my day, I finish the day feeling more accomplished than if my list had 10 items on it.
Think Positive Thoughts
When my week ends and I’ve accomplished a quarter of what I set out to, I can easily get mad and disappointed with myself, but this is my reality lately! Instead of wallowing in my own disappointment, I try to focus on the things I have accomplished. Whether it be what I did in the past year, past month, or even just this morning—like folding the laundry—let those victories, however big or small take center stage in your mind.
Make Plans with Friends
I’m hardest on myself when I spend too much time alone. I think it’s easy to get critical of yourself when you’re isolated, which happens often in the winter. Getting out for a walk, a coffee or lunch with a friend can remind you that you’re doing just fine!
Do Something That Makes You Feel Better
These days, I spend a lot of time in my sweatpants and robe with no makeup on and my hair in a bun, probably 3 days dirty. It’s not what I’d like to look like everyday, but it happens. If I need a little boost, getting dressed and doing my hair and makeup can make me feel so much better about everything. This dress is one of my favorites. It’s comfortable, affordable and look great on just about everyone. It’s also good for early pregnancy, but if you’re further along, it’ll probably be a little short if you’re on the tall side like me. I’m wearing a size small for reference. It also comes in a sleeveless version that I love (and need to order) for spring!
Take a Step Back
I remind myself to do this often. Instead of getting caught up in the frustration of that moment. I take a step back and put things in perspective. Does this really matter? Will I remember this moment in a year? Probably not. Putting things into perspective can quickly make you realize how small your issue is in the grand scheme of things.
Change Your Attitude
Easier said than done, I know! But, trying to force yourself to look on the bright side, see the silver lining, or just not mutter or think those negative thoughts can go a long way in turning your attitude around. The more you practice this, the easier it will be to turn your mood around in the future.
Do you find that you can be hard on yourself too? What tips do you have for showing yourself some love?
photos by Hannah Schweiss