By Molly Christensen, the founder and POWER behind Building Heroes at Home.
Guest writers are invited for their insights into different aspects of the Homeschool Hub Utah's four pillars, which are to connect, empower, educate, and serve homeschooling families in Utah. While we feel each guest blogger's message will be helpful to homeschooling families, not all ideas presented by every guest blogger are officially endorsed by Homeschool Hub Utah.
Beepbeepbeep. Beepbeepbeep. The alarm was blaring, but I hit snooze. For the third time. Five minutes later I hear a kid calling for me. Bleary-eyed, I roll out of bed and respond to the call. Once again, despite my best intentions, I’ve hit the ground running. I continue running all day long, putting one fire out after another. At night, I drop into bed exhausted. After all, I had to stay up till 1:30 am to try to get some things ready for the next day, at a very inefficient pace. With my head finally on the pillow, my mind can relax. Well, sort of. I think of all the things I still need to do the next day that I didn’t get done today. I go over in my mind how many times I really screwed things up and what a mess of a mother I am. Maybe tomorrow I can do better and get up before the kids do so I can actually have some peace. Beepbeepbeep. Beepbeepbeep. Snoozed it yet again… Not getting enough sleep, feeling totally unexcited to face another unaccomplished day, this cycle was miserable! This was me for many, many years. Oh, I’d heard all the reasons why self-care was important for mothers. But I just couldn’t seem to fit it in when everyone always seemed to need me, and there were always lots of urgent things to put first! Kids, homeschool, meals, housework, finances, relationships, problems, clutter, church and on and on. SO MANY THINGS to juggle! When I was 5 years old, my mother had a nervous breakdown. She packed up her newborn son, left the other 4 kids with my dad and she basically ran away. She told my dad to watch the kids; she was going to go take some time off and live at her friend’s house.
She was wise to take the time she needed, but why did she let it get so bad before she did anything about it? I had vowed never to do that to my kids! Except I had gotten myself to the point where I could feel like running away might be a really good option. A lot of times.
I tried all the things I could think of to start doing self care. You know, the oxygen mask first and all that. But it all just seemed so selfish. And I truly did not believe I had any time to do it! Plus all the things I tried I just couldn’t seem to make a habit.
It wasn’t until I realized that true self-care wasn’t really about going out with friends or getting your nails done (although those are very nice too). True self-care is more about creating habits that help you feel more energized. It encompasses the things that help you add more power to your day. I still didn’t really know how to do this, so I threw myself into studying how to make it work for me! I read tons of books, listened to everything I could about what successful people do. Of course most of them seemed like they were rich businessmen with super cush lives and not 7 kids they were homeschooling in a mess. Still I kept trying, despite the “They don’t know what it’s like for me!” thoughts going through my mind. And I kept failing at it too. But what I finally realized is that I could make a system work for me, when I decided to be intentional about creating the life that I wanted - so I could be the homeschool mom I wanted to be for my kids. I was tired of feeling like a mess, living in chaos and pretty sure I was failing my kids. I learned some powerful mindset concepts, and decided I was going to take the driver’s seat of my own brain, instead of letting it talk me out of changing every time I tried! As I started adding new SIMPLE self-care habits into my day (which I DID have time for, despite my busy-ness), I experimented with which ones added the most power to my day. Want to hear what they are?
I even conveniently have a mnemonic so you can remember them! These are my POWER! habits, and they help me put my oxygen mask on first, so I can handle all the things during the day! P - Prayer: Prayer helps you calm your mind and turn it to God. As you do so, you feel more confidence and faith that things will turn out all right.
O - Order: Creating order helps you feel more peaceful and accomplished, even if it’s only for a few minutes a day.
W - Write: Writing in a journal, your thoughts and feelings, gratitude, all of these, help calm the chaos of all those swirling thoughts in your mind.
E - Energy: Doing something to give more energy to my body, such as exercise, drinking more water, eating live, healthy foods, helps so much!
R - Read: Reading (or listening is cool too) good books full of good thoughts is how you can put better thinking in your mind than all those negative thoughts you’ve been swirling on. ! - Wildcard: Always having something you’re working on just for you that you choose is so good for the soul.
You can get more details on each of these habits HERE in my free POWER! Habits Guide.
I didn’t start off with all these habits. I didn’t have time, remember? In my studies, I came across some people who suggested a power hour. HAHAHA! Yeah right! For a long time I never started on any self-care because I didn’t have a whole hour. One day I had an epiphany. There was NO way I could do a power hour. But I could do a power minute! I started with reading my scriptures for 1 minute a day. For reals.
And you know what? It really did help! It DID give me more power in my day! I felt better during the day. I got nicer. I wasn’t as negative. I built on that minute and soon I was up to 5 minutes a day. Nowadays, after practicing a lot, I’m almost up to an hour of POWER! habits. Well, some days. But I’m still practicing!
It was life changing for me to add these POWER! Habits to my life.
If I can do this, you can too. But I didn't do it all by myself. I know, we’re homeschoolers, we are DIYers! There’s a time and a place to DIY, but I learned that all my DIY took me YEARS longer than it would have if had I just gotten someone to help me out at the beginning. That’s why I LOVE mentoring homeschool moms in how to add POWER! Habits in their own lives too. Even if you’ve tried and failed 29 times already, I know this will work for you. That’s because my program has helped hundreds of moms just like you! If you’ve been praying for help, this could be the answer you’ve been looking for. I really hope so! This program will start in January! Join the waitlist here to be notified of when and to get the best pricing possible!