Mama Gone Green is a blog dedicated to raising happy children and reducing our impact on the Earth. My name is Taryn Oakley and I am the mother of 2 young kids and an environmental studies instructor at a community college in Portland, Oregon. Please join me as I journey through life as a mama, teacher, knitter, photographer, gardener, and environmentalist!
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Decreasing my Expectations
Well, that title sounds depressing, doesn't it? But it's not meant to be negative, and in most ways I think it's even a positive. Here, let me explain.
I am a list maker, a go-getter. On days when I am productive and busy, I tend to feel happy. On days when I don't get much done, well, these are the days that I lean towards feeling sad/lonely/guilty/etc. So, what have I learned from this? My body has learned that to stay happy, I should be busy. I should take on projects, be productive, and meet my expectations. And these things are good. In moderation.
However, in reality, I often over-extend myself setting unrealistic goals of what I "should" accomplish in a day. Goals of cleaning my house, working out, baking, discovering, reading, sewing, knitting, blah, blah, blah.
All of these things are great and fine. But- I don't have time to do all of them every day. Or even every week. I have young kids that need their mama. Young kids that are only going to be young once. And the cleaning, baking, sewing, knitting, etc. can wait. At least sometimes. I am not planning on giving up any of my hobbies. (And unfortunately I don't think I can give up cleaning or laundry either). But, I can lower my expectations and be OK with less.
It's OK for my house to be messy sometimes. It's OK to take a few weeks off of knitting. It's OK if I only work out a few days a week. It's OK if I don't get everything crossed off my to-do list. In a few years, when my kids are older, and don't need me as much, I will have much more time for me.
So, for now, I am learning to lower my expectations of myself. To go easy on me and how much I commit myself to. But, I am not going to kid myself. I will still make a to-do list every day, however, I am working on making my lists shorter. I am trying to find time every day to not do anything except just be with the kids and involve myself in their play. I am trying to force myself to slow down, to breathe, and to relax.
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