As a mom, you have so many different jobs on your plates. You juggle loving and caring for your children, keeping the house clean (sorta), and loving your husband. Slowly life becomes more and more overwhelming. You look around and see other moms who seem to have it all together, and you feel like you’re not even able to measure up. You begin to experience mom burnout.
You had such high expectations of what an amazing mother you would be, however, motherhood isn’t what you thought it would be. You’re tired of breaking up fights and doing the same thing day after day. Your days begin to run together as you struggle to be patient with your kids. You know something has to change, but what? How?
Can Stay-at-Home Moms Experience Burnout?
It’s so easy for stay-at-home moms to slip into burnout. We put so many expectations on ourselves. We look around at what others are doing and add some more things to our list of things to do. It seems like we should be doing great since we don’t have an outside job, but we’re all different and can handle only so much. While it may seem like there’s no other way to be a great mom than to do it all, there is a better way.
Depending on your personality or personal expectations, what causes you burnout may be different than what causes another to experience burnout. While it may be caused by a build-up of many little things, burnout can also be caused by one thing. Maybe your burnout is an expectation of perfection, or perhaps emotional burnout from dealing with a trying child. Whatever the cause, it will cause the same results and keep you from being what God has called you to be.
Stay-at-home mom burnout
As a stay-at-home mom, you may experience burnout for different reasons than a working mom or a special needs mom. You may feel guilty for not being able to keep up with your idea of what a good mom looks like. You may think there’s no reason you can’t keep up with all the tasks on your plate. Maybe you are feeling resentful that you’ve given up your career and now you feel less valuable. Perhaps you have lost your identity in the day-to-day tasks of running a home, or you are bored and want to explore new things.
Whatever the reason for why you’re feeling the way to do, know that there’s a way through it. As a stay-at-home mom, maybe even especially as a stay-at-home mom, it’s easy to become discouraged and overwhelmed. That said, it’s also possible to find joy and thrive in your motherhood.
Special needs mom burnout
A special needs mom is going to have unique circumstances and issues to deal with than other moms do. Besides all the regular tasks that all moms deal with, you have medicine to give, appointments and therapies to attend, extra physical care to give, and unending phone calls and paperwork to take care of. You often feel alone and isolated as your care for your special child.
Your child and the life that comes with it has become incredibly taxing on a physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual level. You are fading fast and you’re not sure what to do or how to change things. You love your child and want to give your all, but right now you’re just so tired!
What does Mom Burnout Look Like?
Mom burnout will look a bit different for each person, but there are definitely some symptoms to be on the lookout for. If you are experiencing several of these symptoms, be sure to read on for steps to take toward recovering from mom burnout.
What does the Bible say about the role of a mother? To learn more about being a godly mother, check out these 10 characteristics of a good mother according to the Bible.
Mom burnout symptoms
Below are some mom burnout symptoms you may experience as you become more and more overwhelmed by the tasks of motherhood. Whether you’re experiencing a few of these or all of these, there is hope for moving beyond this season of motherhood.
- Easily irritated
- Decreased motivation
- Loss of enjoyment
- Feeling overwhelmed and helpless each day
- Days blurring into one another
- No longer taking care of yourself
- Becoming increasingly forgetful
- Not really enjoying your children
- Decrease in productivity
- Not sleeping well
- Changes in physical health as you become more run down
How to Recover From Mom Burnout
Did you just realize you’re experiencing most of the above symptoms and know things have to change? What can you do to regain your joy in motherhood? How do you dig your way out of the trench of overwhelm? Unfortunately, there isn’t an overnight fix, but you can start taking small steps in the right direction.
You won’t want to try all of these at once, but choose a couple to start on today. While these aren’t necessarily in order, I certainly recommend starting with the first one for sure followed by the second. After that, choose the ones you feel will make the biggest impact on where you are right now.
- Focus on truths from the Bible. You will need to overcome the lies that you are telling yourself about failing. That is a lie from Satan. Biblical affirmations can help with this.
- Ask for help. Don’t feel like you have to do everything yourself and be super mom. Let your husband help. Hire a mommy’s helper. Let your friend help you clean.
- Find a support system. Whether it’s your family, a mom group, or church group, find some others to give you encouragement and support.
- Recognize that you can only control certain things. Try writing a list of things you can control and things outside of your control. Focus on the things you can do something about.
- Stay away from negative people and spaces, especially for the short-term.
- Find ways to simplify your life.
- Fix your expectations. You are not going to be a perfect mom. None of us are, trust me!
- Take care of yourself. Get enough rest. Eat healthy food. Go for a walk. Get some sun. Drink more water. These are all ways to take better care of your body which will also help your mind.
- Stay connected with your husband. It’s possible to stay connected, even in the season of littles. Try some stay-at-home date ideas.
- Let go of what isn’t important or necessary. Prioritize the things that help you live more intentionally.
- Get a new perspective. Read some encouraging motherhood books or talk to other moms about handling the stresses of being a mom.
- Let your children entertain themselves. You honestly don’t have to play with them everytime they want you to.
- Take a short time of relaxation each day. Have all your children have a quiet time or nap and enjoy a favorite beverage while you read, pray, and unwind for a bit.
- Start a gratitude journal. Let the negative thoughts go and focus on what is positive and good. Write them down.
- Limit choices. Keep things simple and routine as much as possible.
- Figure out what is causing you the most stress and work toward simplifying or creating a routine to help you minimize or avoid that stress.
Mommy burnout is definitely a real thing as you’ve seen. You are not alone as you deal with this. Is there something you’re found to really help you in dealing with burnout and overwhelm? Please comment below. I’d also love for you to share if burnout is something you’re dealing with or have dealt with in the past.
I have many resources on this blog to help you in this motherhood journey. I’d love for you to join my email list and/or find me on Facebook. You are not alone.
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