02 August 2016

Working Girl to SAHM: Five Tips To Help You Fall In Love With Your New SAHM Life

These are my top tricks that were life savers for me in my transition from working mom to stay at home mom when I needed them.

Over the past five years, I’ve been fortunate enough to experience motherhood from both sides of the fence as a working mom outside the home and as a SAHM but I'll let you guys in on a little secret...

I never in a million years ever expected to be a SAHM in the slightest. EVER. If I'm being completely honest, I use to think, "Geez. What do they do all day? And why would anyone want to do it? Boring!" In my defense, I was young, kid-free and had my life to myself {translation: I was one of those childless adults who thinks they know it all where kids are concerned because I had a dog and a cat. Yes, I admit it - I was a poopy head}.

So let me back up for a minute and give you all a little background information. I've always been a working girl and am currently a working mom. Up until Maddy was born, it was me, myself and my career and I was happy with that. I like to work and honestly, I'm good at it. I know what I'm doing when I'm in my career element. I know who I am, what the expectations are and the end goals in sight. It's like second nature to me - comfortable, familiar and easy.

Then along came this little girl...

After Maddy was born, I was on maternity leave for three months and went from working gal to SAHM literally overnight. To say that I had no idea how to be a SAHM with Maddy would be a huge understatement. You could have given me a car needing a transmission repair and I would have known how to fix that faster than I knew how to be a stay at home mom. It sounds silly to say now but the idea of taking care of my own child was scary, foreign and downright intimidating to me. I was literally freaking out thinking things like, "What do I do with this thing all day? How do I keep it busy? What do I do when it cries?"

I know, silly right?!

But seriously, I was clueless. I had always been a career woman in the working world and now here I was with my first child to take care of. On my own. It was time to buck up and get down to business.

I think for most women who make the change from working woman to SAHM, the transition is hard because most women {like myself} have a very dated and jaded idea of what being a SAHM really looks like. For me, I always imagined a boring drawn out day, downtrodden by children, with nothing but the laundry, cooking, and cleaning to keep me busy and occupied. Not to say that some days aren’t like this but overall, what I needed - and eventually found - was a change in perception, attitude and mind-set.

For a lot of women, taking care of the home and getting dinner on the table are treated as tasks that just need to be done and have lists created to keep it all corralled but if you think about it, as a homemaker, whether we are SAHM’s or work outside the home, we are in a place of power. When we embrace motherhood and our homemaking, we nurture our families and ourselves. If we treat homemaking as a chore, we are doing a disservice to our family and us. By changing my mindset, I changed my life. 

I dont mean to sound so dramatic but it’s true. We need to give homemaking the integrity it deserves. It is of no short task, raising a human being, let alone running a household. It takes a huge set of balls to make the conscience choice to get up day after day after day and say, "Yes! I'll do it all over again today!" Ladies, it's time we give ourselves some credit and appreciate and be proud of what we do in and for our homes!

So how did I learn to appreciate homemaking and become comfortable in my role as a SAHM while I did it? Here are my top five secrets to falling in love with your SAHM life:

1. Love Yourself.

Never underestimate the power of simply loving yourself and your calling in life. Accept that is where you're meant to be at this point in time in your life and its okay. Yes - other women may be conquering the working world but you - YOU are raising the next generation of thinkers, doers and citizens of the world. When you think about it on a larger scale, how pretty damn cool is that?! There will never be any more important work to be done than that of the work being done within the walls of your home.

2. Re-Think Cooking, Laundry & Cleaning.

Yes, these are things that "have to be done" more so than things you "enjoy doing" to keep a home running but think of it this way: don’t underestimate how therapeutic cooking dinner for your family can be. Make it a family affair and get everyone involved. Some of our best family memories to date are the ones that center around our kitchen and cooking meals together. Do your laundry with intent, knowing that the work you're doing is to take care of the ones you love. Plan the day you’re going to do it and bake some bread and simmer some soup on the stove in-between loads. Your house becomes a home when you give your job integrity. The aromas will create memories for your children that they will always remember.

3. Light Some Candles.

Yep, you read that right. Spark those babies up! I love candles and I truly believe that they make a house a home. There is nothing more soothing than the smell of your favorite scents wafting through your home. Instant spirit booster!

4. Routine, Routine, Routine.
In parenting circles, we talk a lot about how important routine is for our kids but we often fail to see that it's really just as important for us parents too. Your action plan will keep you organized and it also helps to keep the days running smoothly. Not to say that some spontaneity isn't a great thing from time to time but having a plan that works for you and your kids is worth its weight in gold.

5. Surrender to Fun.

Just do it. Act silly. Run around in your PJ's all day. Watch a movie. Take a day trip. Make a tent or fort in the living room. Sign the kiddos up for some classes. If you have the blessed opportunity to stay home with your kiddos then take every opportunity possible to just enjoy it. I found that when I approach my days as a SAHM with an attitude of, "Let's see how much trouble we can get into today" the day is so much more fun, worthwhile and far less stressful and cumbersome. Our children are only going to be young once. This is the only time in their life when they will be able to live their lives care free. They should be entitled to surrender to fun - play along. You won't regret it. 

These are my top tricks that were life savers for me in my transition from working mom to SAHM when I needed them. What tips and advice do you have to help other mothers {or soon to be new moms} as SAHM's?
Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup
Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup

Courtney is a published author, mom, taco enthusiast, and a Star Wars and Tennessee Volunteers fanatic. She's never met a piece of sushi she didn’t like and enjoys an amazing glass of wine and a great cut of meat. You can read more of her wine-induced, sleep-deprived adventures on The Huffington Post and Scary Mommy.

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