Editor's Note: This month, Lori Verni-Fogarsi, a local mom and author of the new book 'Momnesia,' is sharing weekly posts, reminding us moms that it's important not to forget about ourselves. Check back next Friday for another post. Check the box to the left for more from Lori.
As a novelist, one of the most common conversations I have with people is, “What is your book about?” to which I reply, “An average mom trying to balance ‘momminess’ and ‘sexiness.’” This, of course, is followed by all sorts of reactions, including chuckling, gasping about how I must be in their head, or outright laughing at the very concept: “Sexiness? Yeah, right!”
Let’s face it: We moms have very full plates. Between children, household and other family responsibilities, and for many of us, jobs too, it’s all too common for us to cross our Selves off the list when something’s got to give. The problem? It’s easy to get into that habit and for many of us, we find ourselves stuck on the back burner far too often.
Yet finding balance really doesn’t have to be that hard, and when push comes to shove, doing things for yourself can lead to more energy, less resentment, and happier relationships overall.
Today, I’m sharing with you some tips for finding balance; some taken from the character in “Momnesia,” some created on my own, and others suggested by readers. Enjoy!
1. Don’t wait for a “big event,” like a weekend away with your girlfriends or a cruise with your husband. Instead, seek and implement Small Daily Decadences that are more realistic on a day-to-day basis.
2. Make an appointment. Instead of waiting for some magical day when you and your girlfriends are all going to be free at the same time, schedule a time — even just an hour or two — and stick to it just as you would a doctor appointment.
3. Find little things you like and do them daily. This might mean lighting scented candles or purchasing a container of Caramel Macchiato creamer that you use in your coffee each day.
4. Set boundaries with your family. No, Mommy’s favorite activities are not cooking, cleaning, and working, and she is entitled to use the bathroom without an audience.
5. Remind yourself that you’re not in high school anymore. Instead of mourning the pre-kids physique you used to have, (and “waiting” to get it back before “allowing yourself” to feel sexy again), accept that you’re at a different point in your life and make the most of the assets you do have.
6. Wear your “big girl” clothes, instead of saving them for some fictional day when you won’t have to worry about ruining them.
7. Take your hair out of its ponytail. If necessary, get a haircut that will give you a lower maintenance hairstyle. Most of us feel un-sexy when we wear a ponytail, even if we’ve just showered.
8. Listen to music you like (eg: not sung by cartoon characters). Studies show that listening to upbeat music —especially if reminiscent of your younger years — makes us feel more vivacious in general.
9. Think of things you used to enjoy and work them back into your life. This might be as simple as polishing your nails, playing a game of tennis, or reading a (non-rhyming, non-work-related) book.
10. Post a visual reminder somewhere that will help you remember that you’ve committed to be good to yourself. Don’t want to post a list? Be creative! Hang up some Mardi Gras beads somewhere that you’ll see them or put a funny magnet on your fridge that makes you chuckle while serving as a reminder.
I hope you enjoyed these suggestions and would love to hear your feedback! Have comments, additional ideas, etc? Share them with us here!
Lori Verni-Fogarsi is the author of the new novel, "Momnesia." She has been a freelance writer, columnist, journalist, and seminar speaker for more than 15 years, and has authored one nonfiction book, "Everything You Need to Know About House Training Puppies and Adult Dogs," which has been widely acclaimed in its genre. Lori is a happily married mom of two, stepmom of two more, and has two cats, both rotten. She invites you to learn more at www.LoriTheAuthor.com and join her on Facebook. One more thing: Lori is hosting a Momnesia Party at Niche Wine Lounge in Holly Springs from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., May 31. Join us for an evening of wine, books, and fun! Free chocolates and bookmarks, games that will make you laugh till you cry, short reading of Momnesia and book signing, enter to win a spa basket, $2 wine tasting, and more! Click here for details.