The 7 Habits of Highly-Effective Mothers

Pumpkin bread, hazelnut decaf, exciting new craft book. Perfect fall Saturday (minus the fact that the baby is off on a walk with Dad because he refused his second nap.)

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We’re All In This Together

Lest I somehow manage to portray the illusion that I have my life in order, let me tell you the honest truth. This morning for breakfast I fed my son part of a soufflé from Panera Bread. The last time I got my hair cut was when I was still pregnant; my eyebrows might be hiding one of Trump’s Horcruxes. It’s been nine months since my son was born and I still have ten pounds of pre-baby weight that I’m hanging on to. I have a couple moles that should probably be looked at, but the thought of going through everything to make the appointments and get there makes me tired. I literally haven’t cleaned the master shower since we moved into this house. Do I need to go on?

I’ve had this nagging sense of my life not being in order for as long as I can remember. When we lived in India, back in 2010, I literally came up with a list of 50 “habits” to adopt that I somehow believed would make me worthy of…I don’t even know what. Habits such as:

  • Be mindful of leftovers and never let anything mold.
  • Decorate the house for holidays.
  • Have good posture.
  • Always bake bread.

Cute. And guess what? Seven years later, I’m still cleaning moldy food out of the fridge and buying store-bought Pane Turano. My Halloween game this year currently consists of six sad, tiny pumpkins. My posture is as bad as ever.

I mean, they’re worthy goals and all, but I think I’ve been missing the point all along. I’ve been paralyzed by what’s not perfect about myself, overwhelming myself trying to change ALL THE THINGS AT ONCE, and failing to make forward progress because of it.

So where do I even go from here? I don’t know! I barely even know where this blog post is going — I just came up with the title and a vague idea of what I was going to write about and then started pounding on the keys. (A worthy metaphor for life? Hmm…)

What I really want to do is scrap all my Bullet Journal habit trackers and five-year plans and morning rituals and just live. But at the same time, me just living means not getting a gosh darned single thing done. Which is why I keep a Bullet Journal (etcetera) in the first place.

So I guess I’ll keep pressing forward with the whole life/self-improvement thing, and in the meantime live by what I’m calling…

The Seven (easily attainable*, don’t worry) Habits of Highly-Effective Mothers 

  1. Feed your kid. Well done. Ten points for Gryffindor.
  2. Drink lots and lots of coffee. Switch to booze once the kids are in bed (optional).
  3. Buy some perfect holiday/seasonal outfits and pose your kid in them. Crop out the chaos and post the pictures on Instagram with some cute hashtags. #momlife #blessed #lovebeingamama
  4. Keep the floors clean. Well, clean enough that you feel comfortable letting your kids roll around and/or eat snacks off of them.
  5. Join an online mom tribe. Commiserate with other mothers over lost sleep, poop-splosions, and teething. Scroll through cute pictures of everyone’s spawn, all the while secretly knowing yours is the cutest of them all.
  6. Start a mom blog. It seems like the thing to do.
  7. Do it all again tomorrow. And the day after. And the day after…

Okay, okay. Maybe that list is cobbled-together, but what in my life isn’t these days? The point is, if you’re struggling with wanting to do it ALL and also BE PERFECT, give yourself a break. Every single one of us is struggling, now matter how good our filtered life looks like on the Insta.


*And also humorous, because we all need a little silly in our lives, and I am here to provide.

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