This last week I feel there have been a lot of questions from other Mums that wish to know “What gets me through the day?” And “apart from coffee, the glorious elixir, what fuels you?” Well in true form to my life I had been thinking about these things also, as I struggled through a long week and felt like my fuel gauge had hit empty.
I first started trying to find tools when I was struggling to find contentment as a new mother and be a student, employee and myself. So I did what I do best, research. I read everything and anything and one key piece I took away was they should be things you can do at any moment, which was crucial to me.
I tried to write down in one sitting the tools I have used over the last 2 years, but with a sick toddler and other life commitments in just didn’t happen. So I scribbled my “happy tools” everywhere, from post it notes to writing on my sons blackboard. So the following points are what I realised helped me in my everyday life, and whilst the list could be 20 times longer or differ to yours, I hope you find a way to find your happiness tools.
1. Exercise- what that’s crazy? Of course you have heard this one. Yet I’m not saying go run a half marathon in between nappy changes and daycare drop offs. For me walking has kept me sane more than anything else these last few years. When my son wouldn’t sleep any where but the pram, I would head out the door at 8am and not come back until I felt clearer in my mind and ready to tackle the day.
2. Read- I’m a fanatical reader, but I find sitting down with a great crime novel hard these days as my alone time is limited. So I’ve gotten creative, from podcasts to audible books, to even just reading the news headlines I find joy in a world outside that of my own. I’ve always read but when I had a baby and was studying I had to get creative and that’s where I found that podcasts were a god send. (Note to new mothers and pregnant goddesses, stay away from the news, trust me on this.)
3. Meditate- stay with me here. I’m not talking about trying to sit crossed legged in the middle of the lounge floor whilst your 2 year old colours on the television. Instead use your imagination that your 2 year old harnesses every day. I found if I could breathe and picture standing in the cool beach waters on a cold winters day I could fall straight to sleep at night.. Which brings me to sleep.
4. Sleep- we all know there are recommended guidelines to sleep and I also know that the reality of children means those hours are shorter or completely broken up. I also know that “sleeping when the baby sleeps” can be hard when you work from home, study or just generally need to keep things in your household going. So when I was waking 4-5 times a night I would go to sleep half an hour earlier, I knew I would be up but this gave me some rest.
5. Fuel up- Eat, drink and be creative. Not only have I found ways to fuel myself with fresh food and a generous helping of coffee, tea and water. I re opened my creative outlet of painting. Now you don’t need to go all Picasso but you can channel some Pollock, with your toddlers finger paints or Banksy style chalk works. Whatever makes you feel better and floats your boat.
I wanted to address my lack of “partnership” tools and finding happiness with your partner. That relates to a completely different article for me. Simply because when I set out to find joy I wanted to be able to do things alone, because without family close by, and a travelling partner I needed to know I could do it on my own for when those times came around.
I also don’t want you to confuse my journey to be “happier” alongside depression. Depression is a completely different ballgame and it isn’t approachable in the way happiness and sadness are. This post is simply a way I found I could refuel my soul and I am not a trained professional in any of the above mentioned tools, I am just a Mum who needed a way to find my way through the maze of my new life.
All my love,
And thankyou to a beautiful Mother friend in my life, who somehow knew to message me at 10pm when I was sobbing in the bathroom.
“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear” Buddhist proverb
Rosanna Wilson. Brighton. Melbourne
Founder of Mumbubandabarista
Avid instagrammer @mumbubandabarista, with a growing group of followers daily.
Rosanna Wilson is currently a full time Mum to one, and Student.
She writes about her relationship with coffee, and how it parallels to her role as a mother. She is on a journey to help others find kid friendly, fashionable cafes. Her and her social two year old live and breathe Bayside.