My cup runneth over. I’ve always loved that phrase and the visual that goes with it. Because it represents a type of love that is endless. Boundless. And sweet.
And a mother’s love is like that for her children. It’s selfless. Constant. And strong. Without anyone asking, my cup runneth over for my kids. And I love that.
But that doesn’t stop me from sometimes feeling like I’m getting run over metaphorically by all of the stress that goes with motherhood. And other times, literally by my four sons.
As a mom, it’s a lot of pressure to keep your love pouring out if there isn’t anything going in. After all, you can’t pour from an empty cup. And you certainly can’t parent well when your cup is on empty, no matter how much you try.
So I’ve realized there are times when focusing on filling my own cup first--even if it is for just 15--minutes is the most selfless thing I can do for my kids because it makes me a better mom to them. And that isn’t just a bunch of bull, it’s totally and completely true.
So here are 5 of my favorite ways to fill up my own cup so that I have more to keep pouring out:
1. But First Coffee
There are 100 shirts out there that kid about this, but I truly do tell my sons, “Mommy isn’t going to make breakfast until I’ve filled my coffee cup. Whatever you need is going to have to wait until I chug this down.” And no matter how cliché it is, I live and breathe this motto. As I pour my coffee and take five minutes to gear up for the day, I feel my love tank fill a little too.
2. Just Say No to Preschool Tunes
I’ve always been a music lover, so often in the car, I choose what we listen to on the radio not my children no matter how addicting listening to a duck sing the ABC’s can be. Whether it be pop radio, Delilah (she’ll always be amazing in my book) or NPR, all can boost my mood. So I go for it.
3. Going Stag to the Store
When you’re dating, long walks on the beach sound great. But when you’re a mom, a quick trip to the grocery store or Target can fill my cup in an instant. Or my shopping cart. As I buy juice to fill their sippy cups, I instantly begin to feel recharged myself. It’s amazing.
4. A Walk in the Park
I used to hire babysitters for special dates, now my husband and I have a sitter come over so we can go run together. It may not sound romantic, but it’s an easy way to reconnect and boost endorphins in a flash.
5. Stay Fresh in What You Love
It’s easy to say that moms don’t have hobbies because hobbies require spare time, which kind of clashes with the whole raising tiny humans concept. But we should have them because they can fulfill us. Or fill us up! I love to write. So I do it. I challenge you to keep a hobby or two alive and well too. So we can keep our kiddos alive and well inthe process.