After my kids flew the nest, “Mom Guilt” remained.
My son is diagnosed with Bipolar w/Schizophrenic effect. (This was before the Autism diagnosis was redefined, and he would probably fall under this too now.)
I was always fighting the professionals, well-meaning adults, and church friends' advice on what was best for my son.
A counselor told me – had I not been the kind of mom I was, my son would probably be dead.
I also helped raise a teenage stepson, he wasn't completing his high school assignments. He was in danger of not graduating. I was the one that stayed on his case, checked on his daily required work, and this was the only reason he graduated. My stepson did not like me, his mom did not like me, and my husband didn't really know how academics worked.
These battles left me feeling incompetent and with a lack of confidence.
The first thing to understand about having a lack of self-confidence is to understand the root of the issue.
The Lack of Self Esteem is the root of the lack of self-confidence.
A tree does not flourish if its roots are unhealthy.
5 signs of low self esteem in women
- Changing yourself to please others
- Second guessing yourself
- Self- Limiting beliefs
- Feeling Inferior
- Overthinking other people's comments
Find out if you are feeling incompetent as a mom; start by checking your self-esteem levels by reading what experts say.
Low Confidence and Mental Health
While there are situational experiences that cause low self-esteem, it is common for low confidence and mental health issues to co-exist. It is important to address the mental health issue first, then focus on improving confidence. I have found it is impossible to increase my confidence if I am not managing my mental health issues properly. I recommend doing a mental health check before practicing confidence building.
What is Self Confidence?
According to the Merriam-Websters dictionary, Self Confidence is simply
“ confidence in oneself and in one's powers and abilities”
and Confidence is a feeling or belief that you can do something well or succeed at something.
What does this look like in real-time though?
5 Signs of a Confident Woman
- We set realistic expectations for our accomplishments.
- We are self aware and accept both our strengths and flaws equally
- We measure ourselves against ourselves, not others
- We set healthy boundaries
- We choose positivity over feelings
Growing in self-confidence as a mom means growing in self-confidence as a woman first.
You are a person, a woman before you are a mom.
As taking care of ourselves must come first in order to take care of children, building our self-confidence first, allows us to then build our confidence as a mom.
Things Low Confident Moms Need to Know
So by using the lists above we:
Know What Not to Do: change “me” for others, 2nd guess myself, allow myself to feel inferior to others, and don't overthink what someone says, don't compare to others.
And we know What to Do:
Think positive, accept “me” (warts and all), have realistic (anti- wonder mom) expectations, and keep our boundaries (just say no).
But what does that look like, in real life?
Because you are juggling 10 things, words are words, intentions are intentions but you need something practical to apply?
That doesn't involve an entire journaling practice for the time I don't have? Please and thank you?
5 Practices to become a Confident Mom
- Positive Thought Framing: YES: This is a challenge! VS: This is a problem.
- Positive Thought Framing: YES: This is a path we can walk together VS This is a big hill we have to climb.
- Acknowledge all the small things you did: We frequently do small things and forget that we do them and don't give ourself credit for the small things. YES: I fed the children/family/pets + I did a load of laundry + I gave the pets attention + I called/emailed + I didn't eat 5 cookies, I ate 2. These are accomplishments and they count!
- Set reasonable expectations: With children at home, plan to get interrupted for every task you start. Then when the task doesn't get done that day, you still can give yourself credit for getting 25% of the task done. Don't expect the To-Do list to be complete To-Day.
- Listen to Positive Peers or No Peers: I found that my mind-set changed when I began listening to online peers instead of my in person peers. My online peers are much more educated and experienced thus more supportive. Confident women value themselves enough to seek out positive, supportive peers.
- Give YOURSELF positive feedback daily: Accept yourself as you accept others. There is not going to be positive feedback or positive results 100% of the time. You have to be the one to give yourself that feedback on a consistent basis. I find it helpful to be a “teacher self”, talking to my “student self” with offerings of encouragement and positive feedback.
Mom's Self-Confidence effects their children's self confidence
The number one motivator for increasing your own self confidence?
Experts discovered that a mom's level of self-confidence gets passed on to her children.
Modeling is always more effective for loving our children, so children will inherit for themselves the same level of self-worth.
It is vital for us as mothers to recognize our own self-esteem issues, and use confidence-building habits so our children can simply catch mom's self-confidence vibe.