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Having a child is the best thing you will ever do, but when you give yourself 100% to this little person, it’s easy to lose sight of who you once were. When this happens, your confidence can definitely slip away a little. When your goals and aspirations are put on the backburner, your needs aren’t being met like they once were and you’re unhappy in the way you look, it’s the perfect storm for losing confidence. But it doesn’t need to be this way- take action today and get your self-esteem back!
Find a flexible way to earn money
As women, we’re forever told that we can’t ‘have it all’ when it comes to kids and career. And admittedly, it is difficult- it’s something that women all over the globe have struggled with for generations. However, there are ways that you can earn a living while being there for your kids, doing so not only improves your financial situation but can give you confidence too. So many mums find that returning to work years later after having their kids is incredibly daunting since it’s been so long since they did that kind of job.
Having a large employment gap on your resume can also make it tricky to get back into work, so if you’re able to do something around your family then it can be really beneficial. You could look into part-time jobs, or you could start up your own home business, buying and selling items for a profit or selling crafts you’d made. This could anything from art prints you’ve designed on Photoshop to cakes you’ve baked to jewellery you’ve made. You could start a blog and monetise it, or take on some freelance work. The best thing about freelancing is you don’t need any materials or upfront costs to cover- just a computer and an internet connection which chances are, you already own. Free up space on your device (go here to find out how) and ensure it’s in full working order, then you can sign up to a freelancing site and start taking on jobs right away.
Start up a hobby
As a busy parent, you’ll be all too aware that you don’t get much time to yourself. You’re up early and in bed late, every day there’s a to-do list as long as your arm which you have to tackle to ensure your family have everything they need. While you might love doing this and take full responsibility for your children’s health and happiness, it doesn’t mean you should neglect your own.
Taking up a simple hobby, even one that you can do from home an hour a week can help you to de-stress, build your skills and therefore your confidence. It could be knitting, sewing or crocheting. It could be painting or design, it could be baking or cooking, it could be growing flowers or herbs in the garden. Anything that grabs your interest and sparks a passion, it doesn’t have to take a lot of your time or energy. Do research online into how to improve, join forums and chat with others who share your interests, follow tutorials and have fun with it!
There are many things that are out of our control in life, but one thing we have the power over are the foods that go into our body. And eating well can be really satisfying. Not only do you get peace of mind that your family is getting all the nutrition they need, but you’ll experience elevated mood, more energy and an improved physique as a result of eating the right things. Eating healthily doesn’t need to be expensive, in fact, it can be much cheaper than eating conveniently. Processed convenience foods are full of nasties and cost much more than their equivalent ingredients.
Do some research into healthy, tasty and inexpensive recipes. If you’re pushed for time, you could batch cook when you have a few free hours, separate everything into individual portions and freeze them ready for when you need them. Utilise your slow cooker, make delicious curries, stews and soups out of inexpensive cuts of meat, bulked up with veggies and plenty of herbs and spices to season. Get into the habit of eating as a family, the temptation can be there to feed kids and adults separately to make life easier but there are so many benefits to eating together. The main one being that families that do tend to be much closer.
Find meals that you can all eat, you can always slightly customise things to suit different tastes. For example, make one curry to share but add a little chilli to the adults plates for heat, or a swirl of yoghurt to kids to cool it down.
Incorporate exercise into your day
Another way to boost your energy levels, improve your physique and give your confidence a kick is to exercise. Again, time constraints can make this tricky but not impossible. Exercise doesn’t need to mean going on a long run or hitting the gym, it can simply involve being more active with your family.
If your children are small, get them out in the pram and go on long walks to the park. If they’re older, get your bikes out and go on bike rides or hikes together. Walk to school or to the shops instead of driving, and do fun active things like trampoline parks, water fights, games of football in the garden. It creates memories and gives you fun family bonding time while ensuring that you’re all getting the activity you need to stay fit and healthy.
Socialising changes when you become a parent. There are no more spontaneous trips out with your friends, last-minute date nights with your partner, late deal holidays or all weekend festivals. It can be especially tricky if you’re the first of your friends to have children when they’re still out doing all of these things which no longer suit your lifestyle or even your interests. But it doesn’t mean you can’t, or shouldnt socialise!
Find new ways to spend time with your friends, you could also aim to meet new people who are in the same situation as you. Go to baby groups, arrange playdates with friends who have kids. This allows you to socialise at the same time. All of us know how hard it is when you’re home alone all day with a baby or young kids, how you crave conversation and interaction with other adults. Over time, if you stop having this you can become withdrawn, you might start feeling shy and even ‘forget’ how to be around other people. Spend time in your life with the people you care about, and push yourself to meet others too. It’s other people that can open the door to new opportunities, encourage you to try things you otherwise wouldn’t have and make life more interesting, fun and enjoyable.
Treat yourself occasionally
You’ll probably have no problem with spending money on your kids, but when it comes to yourself it’s a different matter. We all get that ‘mum guilt’, but we deserve to have occasional treats too. If your children are fed, clothed and have what they need, why shouldn’t we spend a little money on getting our nails done, our hair done or on a new outfit every now and again? It’s these little treats that can boost your confidence and make you feel good about yourself- if you’re walking around with four-inch roots in your hair and scruffy clothes then finding any kind of self-esteem is going to be hard.
As a parent, you’re always going to put your children first, but don’t neglect yourself in the process. You might not have the cash to drop a load of money on designer clothes, luxury handbags and high-end restaurants on yourself like you once did- but you deserve to feel good in your appearance and buy the things that you need.