You have big dreams. But you also have big responsibilities.
Being a busy mom can feel like your own desires are pushed aside.
For sure, you have less time on your hands than most. But that doesn’t mean you can’t crush your goals.
You’ve just got to work smarter, rather than harder!
This article will share some no-BS tips to help you do that.
1) Know that you deserve it
First things first, you’re going to need the best mindset if you want to crush your goals.
That includes cultivating a potent mix of positivity and self-love.
If that sounds a bit wishy-washy, don’t underestimate the practical power it will bring.
Whether you achieve your goal or not really can rest upon your mindset and the level of self-belief you cultivate.
For starters, positivity has been scientifically proven to boost your immune system, reduce stress and improve your well-being.
But more than that, research has shown that positivity makes you more successful.
In the words of self-made billionaire Richard Branson:
“Positive people don’t just have a good day; they make it a good day. People who think positively usually see endless possibilities.”
You’re far more likely to achieve your goals if you truly believe you can.
Some of the tools I personally like to use to help me with my mindset are:
- Meditation – which is a great stress buster too.
- Journalling – which brings a whole host of benefits including helping you to plot your goals, track your progress, find inspiration, problem solve and essentially coach yourself along the way.
- Positive affirmations – to boost your confidence and improve self-talk.
- Visualization – which can keep you motivated by picturing yourself already having achieved your goal.
Self-love is essential because it serves as a reminder that not only can you crush your goals, but you truly deserve to.
You deserve this time and energy devoted to yourself.
Along the way, you’ll most likely encounter setbacks and challenges that may make you question that.
So repeat after me:
“I deserve to do this for myself”.
2) Yes, do your research, but don’t get bogged down in it
No doubt, research can be really useful.
It can help you to better understand your goals, and explore potential paths of how you’ll get there.
As they say, fail to prepare and prepare to fail.
So by all means, read up on tips and tricks. Think about the things you’ll need to help you make a start. Check out how other people with the same goals did it.
But don’t get stuck in this stage. Because it’s very easy to do, and here’s why:
It feels safer.
Taking action can be scary because it makes it all real.
So it’s easy to tell yourself you’re still not ready. Or that you’ll start next week.
But often, we never feel ready.
Taking action is what builds your confidence.
You don’t need to know every single step along the way. Overplanning can be a waste of time, especially for busy moms.
Do enough research to figure out your first few steps. Then make a start.
Goals quickly feel overwhelming when we look too far into the distance. It feels like we’ve bitten off more than we can chew.
So be sure to take small bites.
Break down your goal into small actions — and importantly be realistic.
3) Be realistic about what you can get done and when you’ll do it
I know some days it may feel like you have to be, but you’re not Superwoman.
Setting realistic goals is important for everyone, no matter who you are. But it’s especially important for already overstretched moms.
Here’s the thing:
Enthusiasm and motivation are great. But they’re not miracle workers.
Sometimes when we have our sights set on achieving a goal, we’re unrealistic in our timeline and expectations.
What I mean is we expect too much too soon.
Then one of two things can end up happening:
You totally wipe yourself out trying to juggle too many commitments. Or you don’t get as much done as quickly as you wanted.
The first will bring burnout, the second is going to be really demotivating.
Setting small and achievable goals is always key to smashing goals.
Slow and steady wins the race.
Give yourself the time you need and set your sights on small wins along the way.
- What are my current time commitments?
- How much time can I find to work on my goals?
Then use this information to create a realistic structure and time commitment that works for you.
That might be getting up an hour early every morning before the rest of the house wakes up. Or at the end of the day if you’re more of a night owl.
It could be shifting around (or ditching) other priorities to make time for this one.
When you’re a busy mom, you have to be more structured. That means sitting down, calendar in hand, and figuring out when you can find some time.
4) Ditch the distractions, time wasters, and low-level priorities
I firmly believe that life is about trade-offs.
Whenever we say yes to something, we need to be prepared to say no to something else.
There’s no way around it, goals require sacrifices.
It’s up to you to figure out what.
Remember you’re not giving things up forever, you’re just re-prioritizing for a while.
So that may mean other things that are still important to you take a backseat for a while.
There are only so many hours in the day, so something has got to give.
Say no to the things you don’t have time for. This might mean confronting any people-pleasing habits.
A few of those choices might be easier than others.
Personally, I eliminated social media from my life last year and that gave me back all the endless scrolling time.
Make a list of your priorities and figure out what you can sacrifice and which are non-negotiables.
5) Question your excuses
In fact, don’t just question them, answer them back.
Ok, let me explain:
Right now you might feel really pumped about achieving your goals. That’s great!
But I’m willing to guess you’re not always going to.
When you’re exhausted and fed up, that’s when those excuses will start to rear their head.
But you can pre-empt them.
There’s a big difference between acknowledging challenges and coming up with excuses.
The mind loves to find problems. So beat it to it.
Make a list of the likely excuses you have for NOT achieving your goal.
For example, you don’t have enough time, you don’t want to neglect your family, etc.
Then answer them back. Find flaws in them.
Find solutions to any challenges that arise rather than excuses.
6) Get back-up
This one is all about support and accountability.
Telling people what you’re doing makes it all more real. That means you’re more likely to stick to it.
We’re less likely to give up when we know someone is watching.
So, it’s going to give you greater resolve and commitment.
But getting back-up is also about leaning on any support systems you may have in your life.
For example, if you have a partner, relatives, friends, or even paid help, who can take some of the extra burden.
Women are expected to juggle a lot, and not always fairly.
One study found women in the US spend two hours more than men each day cleaning, cooking, taking care of kids, and doing other unpaid work.
If you can lighten your load to claim back any of your time and energy — then do so.
7) Create good habits
Creating habits isn’t easy, but that’s what will support you to get things done.
Sadly, research has found we’re not motivated enough by simply having a goal.
We need some structure around it so that it becomes routine.
For example, if mornings work better for you to find time, then turn that into a habit.
Get up every morning at exactly the same time.
Best-selling author of ‘Atomic Habits’ James Clear argues our entire life is essentially the sum of our habits:
“How in shape or out of shape you are? A result of your habits. How happy or unhappy you are? A result of your habits. How successful or unsuccessful you are? A result of your habits.
“What you repeatedly do (i.e. what you spend time thinking about and doing each day) ultimately forms the person you are, the things you believe, and the personality that you portray.
“Everything I write about – from procrastination and productivity to strength and nutrition – starts with better habits. When you learn to transform your habits, you can transform your life.”
8) Celebrate your wins
Sometimes we can get so focused on where we want to go, that we fail to notice what we’ve already achieved.
Holding on to your motivation is going to be easier when you learn to pat yourself on the back.
At the end of the day, think back at what you managed to get done. Ideally, write it down in a journal.
Every small milestone you pass, treat yourself in some small way.
But also recognize your effort, just as much as any achievements.
We all need to be kinder to ourselves.
You should give yourself the due credit for merely showing up for yourself and trying.