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Baby talk Baby talk
WORDS TO LIVE BY
February 28, 2018
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Baby talk Baby talk
WORDS TO LIVE BY
February 28, 2018
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Last week I had a particularly challenging day; 4 hours broken sleep, a grotty toddler, a streaming cold and a pressing work deadline (aka a regular parenting day). Usually one for the full alphabet of expletives and an internal rant that everything was against me, I was instead surprised to find myself muttering calming, positive advice.

All of a sudden, it hit me that in order to survive this mumming lark, I have inadvertently started coaching myself through the day. I love a positive Insta-quote and often remember random soundbites from experts I’ve read but before now, I’ve never actively tapped into the realms of motivation or mindfulness. There are moments when I’m trying to reason with my two-year-old not to put her head in the toilet bowl or that licking the windows in ballet class isn’t as funny as she might think, that I honestly wonder if I’m losing my mind. I suspect it’s these exact bizarre situations and discussions that cause me to find solace in mantras to locate some logic and sense. Here are my current favourites to employ at choice moments and reclaim some zen.

  1. “Small wins will make today a success”. On days when there’s a full force meltdown because we haven’t put nappies on all the teddies, or red-faced wailing because my daughter can’t roll up her sleeves, I find myself repeating this particular mantra. It takes the pressure off the list of tasks I have imposed upon myself and stops me feeling like I’m getting nowhere. Instead I focus on the fun, the little achievements and, if all else fails, the fact we both got through the day unscathed.

  2. “The 5-Minute Rule”. For when I’m so busy panicking we’re not sticking to schedule that I’m missing the enjoyment of parenting. I ask myself if this really needs to be rushed? What if I gave this task five more minutes and enjoyed the process more of say, putting her to bed, singing some songs together or reading another bedtime story? What does that five minutes actually cost me?

  3. “Start where you are”. When the kitchen’s a complete tip and the washing is mounting and I haven’t even thought about dinner, it all seems overwhelming but this is what gets me through. I look at what’s directly in front of me and start there. Forget dithering over what best to attack first, the right task is right in front of me.

  4. “Live your own parenting advice”. I tell my daughter it doesn’t matter if you succeed, as long as you try, that everyone makes mistakes and it’s normal. Yet having come up against a seemingly impossible work project recently, I realised I was far from following my own instruction. Now rather than being intimidated into my usual paralysis, I’m choosing just to give it a bash instead. Trying and failing is temporary but not trying at all lasts forever (that one’s actually from Davina).


My new approach stops me from taking it all too seriously, after all this is just a phase and there’s a lot of humour to be found if you take a step back from the conflict. I was particularly grateful of this new mind-set today when, in an important meeting with our bank manager, my toddler pulled down my top, fully exposing both my breasts and shouted “Boobies!” at the top her of voice. Admittedly, I’m still to come up with a mantra for that one.

1 comments
Nicola
says
17th Mar 2018

Love this! Also almost spat my drink out at the last paragraph. Xx

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