Mom guilt wreaks havoc on the mindset of mompreneurs…
Ever put boundaries in place to protect your time and energy only to find that stupid mom guilt rears its ugly head and wrecks your plans? Yeah, me too. That’s why today we are discussing how you can create strong boundaries and ditch the mom guilt.
Do you ever say “yes” then resent saying “yes” because it means you’re making a sacrifice? Feel like you’re always doing but never for yourself? Would you like to feel like you control your schedule? Enjoy the activities you participate in? Or want to spend time with family instead of feeling like it’s out of obligation? Then you need to create some boundaries. And we’re going to talk about how you can do it without feeling mom guilt. Or wife guilt. Or any number of other guilts you feel when you put yourself first.
Establishing clear boundaries allows you to identify and communicate where you draw the line, how much you can handle, and when you know you have reached your capacity. Going over the line or over capacity leads to resentment, frustration, burnout, feeling disrespected, and a multitude of other generally bad feelings towards our work, our clients, our families, and even ourselves.
When we clarify our limits, communicate our boundaries, and practice protecting them, we also protect ourselves from all that comes with living an over-capacity life.
For too long, our society has honored overworking and overcommitment. We glorify moms who don’t sleep because they sacrifice day in and day out their kids. We honor business owners who ignore their families and personal needs to get that 6 or 7 figure success.
I can understand why you would feel exhausted, anxious, depressed, frustrated, confused, or just plain burnt out. It’s grueling grind. Not to mention, the moment you find time and space for you, there’s a little voice in the back of your head saying “doesn’t your child need you right now?” or “a good mom doesn’t need a break from being a mom.”
There is a way out of this vicious cycle…establishing and communicating clear boundaries to your spouse, kids, clients, team, and whoever else you make commitments to helps you take control of your time and energy. In time you can better focus your time and energy on what you truly value.
You will squash the feelings of resentment or anxiety you feel about letting people down. If they know you’re at capacity and they try to breach it…that’s a them problem not a you problem. You will also gain back time and energy for doing what you love and nurturing you. Rather than constantly tapping yourself out for the sake of others.
And speaking of others, creating and recognizing your boundaries will help you learn to better respect other people’s boundaries. You’ll improve your relationships because you can ask about their limits and respect their capacity.
What Boundaries Are and Are Not
Before I share my simple steps for creating boundaries without feeling guilty, I want to address some of the resistance I hear from my community to setting boundaries.
- Setting boundaries is NOT ignoring people or causes you care about. But setting boundaries is about focusing your time and aligning your energy with what you truly value rather than spreading yourself too thin.
- Setting boundaries is NOT cutting yourself off from family, friends, or activities. However, setting boundaries is scaling back so you don’t go too far or run overcapacity.
- Setting boundaries is NOT selfishly limiting your options. Setting boundaries is making time and energy choices that align with the values of a healthier, happier mom entrepreneur.
I’m not saying setting boundaries is going to be easy, especially at first. Mom guilt is a beast. Setting boundaries is a skill that takes a bit of practice. But the more you practice, the easier it will become. The more you will see the benefits of protecting your time and energy. And you’ll tame that mom guilt beast with a present, happier mom during her non-work hours.
Creating Boundaries without Mom Guilt
Here is my simple, 3 step approach to start successfully creating and communicating boundaries…
- Identify where you need boundary…What gives your anxiety? When does your heart start to flutter? Where do you say “yes” when you really want to say “no”?
- Communicate your boundary with the person or people it may affect…This is a super important and often overlooked step. And that can lead to resentment. You know, when you set a boundary but don’t tell anyone. Then they violate it and you get angry. Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything. For help with steps one and two, check out episode 81 “How to Communicate Boundaries in Work and Home Life” where I give you an easy exercise to create a personal boundaries statement.
- Create positive boundary reminders…Because let’s face it, just because you create a boundary doesn’t mean those guilty feelings are going away. Mom guilt will still nag you. People may try to get to you agree “just this one time” or say “we really need you”. You may feel the urge to backtrack on your boundary after saying “no”. This is where you remind yourself why you put these boundaries in place. Repeat to yourself statement like “It’s OK to set boundaries”. Or “Feeling guilt doesn’t mean I made the wrong decision”. Or “I am not responsible for people’s reactions to my boundaries”. (That’s the one I have to remind myself of regularly.)
Today’s action step to help you create healthy boundaries without mom guilt is to identify where you need a boundary. Then communicate that boundary to the person or people affected. And finally, pre-write some positive boundary reminders for when you feel like you want to break your own rules. Remember, putting other’s wants and needs first all the time runs you down. Then you, in turn, will turn to others to meet your needs and you could potentially violate their boundaries, either intentionally or unintentionally. Creating healthy boundaries disrupts this cycle.
And if you need help identifying where you need boundaries or communicating your boundaries with your clients or family, I’m here to help. On a free, 15-minute clarity call we can discuss where you feel stuck or spent and how I can help you go from Busy to Blissful as a mompreneur. You can sign up for your free call at bit.ly/bsmbookacall today. I believe you can create strong boundaries and crush your mom guilt.
Need additional support in creating your best mompreneur life? Want to create a solid and simple plan to get your work done and have fun? Let’s jump on a free, no-obligation 15-minute call to see how I can help you feel more fun & fulfilled in your work and home life.