The book Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms: Simple Ways to Stress Less and Enjoy Your Family More by Kristine Carlson (wife of the late Dr. Richard Carlson) is an excellent resource for busy moms. Too often women feel that they have to be perfect when it comes to being a mother. They think the perfect mom is able to be completely patient, even tempered, wise, and, of course, an excellent cook and homemaker as well. These impossibly high standards do not allow mothers to interact authentically with their children or enjoy the moments of childhood that are, too often, gone too fast. Kristine Carlson’s book explains how mothers can do more for their children by shedding the ideal of perfection and instead be their authentic selves and express themselves completely as a mother.
One of the issues the book addresses is how important it is to show your true self to your children. It is very easy to place yourself on a high pedestal as a mother and resist the urge to show any signs of emotional weakness or vulnerability. However, doing this can alienate your children. Instead show your human side showing your humanness by embracing your mistakes. This helps teach your children important lessons. Having this kind of transparency in your relationships with your children will lead to a stronger bond between you and your family.
Yes, having children is a stressful job. Toddlers and teenagers are always pushing their boundaries and doing their best to test their parent’s patience. During this time when children are trying to understand their independence, it can be easy to overreact in stressful situations. This book helps mothers understand that it is possible to still have the respect and authority of your children and still admit when you may have acted incorrectly during a heated moment. Sometimes mothers will throw out huge punishments like grounding a child for the entire summer, for example, when they have done something wrong. We realize later, after we have cooled down, that we acted wrong. When this happens, it is important to talk to your child and admit that you lost your patience and explain why they will still have a consequence for their actions. Admitting your faults will not mean that you will lose your authority, rather your children will learn the importance of taking responsibility and to have maturity in stressful situations.
One of the most important tips I found in the book is to take the time to nourish your own spirit first. As mothers, our days are often packed to the brim with activities, commitments, and endless responsibilities. In order to be centered as individuals and not get lost in the shuffle, it is important to find some time during the day, even if it’s just for few minutes, to meditate, read, take a walk, or whatever activity lets you regain a feeling of peace during the day. Taking these steps to decrease stress during the day will allow you to interact in a calm and rational manner with your children and actually enjoy the time you spend with your family.
This is a great book that I would recommend to all moms. In fact, you can sign up here to get the first chapter of the book for free!
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Disclosure: I was provided a product in exchange for this review, however, all thoughts and opinions are 100% mine.