For as long as I can remember, if you asked me what I wanted most out of life, my answer would be “to be happy”. After struggling with anxiety and depression for most of my adolescence and young adulthood, happiness became my ultimate goal. I worked hard to achieve happiness, and I am proud to say that I figured out how to become one of the happiest people I know.
Motherhood has brought a new level of joy to my life. It has filled me with a sense of purpose; an inner knowing that being a mother is what I was brought here to do. But learning to be a happy mother, also took some work. With my program for new moms, New Mama Bird Circle, starting this week, I’ve been reflecting on my experience as a mother thus far. I’ve realized that I can sum up what it takes to be a happy mama in 3 words: Contemplation, Connection, & Contribution.
Contemplation refers to time spent alone in stillness. Time spent in contemplation can include prayer and/or meditation. The most important part, is that it is time spent by ourselves, with our own inner wisdom. As mothers, our lives are noisy and busy. There is a constant hustle and bustle to our days. In order for us to be in balance, we need to make a commitment to having quiet time in our lives. This gives us an opportunity to get in touch with our own desires, hopes, and dreams. It gives us space to reflect on what’s working for us, and on what’s not. It helps us relieve stress, and have time to be alone with our thoughts, without thinking about anyone else’s expectations of us. Time spent in quiet stillness and contemplation is important for everyone, and it is especially vital to us mothers.
As much as alone time is important for us, so is Connection. As humans, we desire deep connection. We all want to feel loved, supported, and cared for. As mothers, we are natural givers. We need to feel loving connection in our lives, and experience relationships that go both ways, where there is an equal give and take. Since we are always giving our energy away, we need to also be able to receive love from those around us. In order to feel our best, we need strong connections with our families and communities. We experience connection by finding our tribes; the friends who become family and will love us and encourage us through any challenges. We also experience connection by being fully present with our families, by putting our phones away, being in the moment, and allowing ourselves to feel the love we have for these special people in our lives. By being with the people we love, who also love us, and accept us exactly as we are, we experience fulfilling connection in our lives.
Contribution is the final key to happiness for us mamas. In order to feel happy and fulfilled, we need to feel that we are contributing something of value to the world. We all want to know that our lives have made an impact, whether that be by the specific ways in which we raise our children, the work we do in the world, or a combination of both. We need to be doing meaningful work with our lives, contributing to the things and people that matter to us, and being intentional about the legacies that we will leave behind.
Contemplation, connection, and contribution are the keys to a happy life as a mama. Once these 3 values are met, joy comes naturally. The great thing about this, is that these 3 things are all within our control. How we spend our days, is how we spend our lives. By taking small steps each day to spend time in contemplation, value our connections, and contribute to what matters to us, we will be well on our way to being happy, fulfilled moms.
We will be discussing these topics at length, and creating our own daily self care routines to make sure that these values are being met, in New Mama Bird Circle, my virtual program for new moms. If you are a new mama who could use some extra support in this area, I invite you to join us! We would love to connect with you and help you feel like the happy and healthy mama that you deserve to be.