10 (realistic) goals for parenting

I was reading through a friend's goals today for her week ahead and at the top of her list was "I will not yell at my kids this week." I totally get where her heart was, but the idea got me thinking...A goal to stop yelling? "HA!", I thought. 

Yelling is obviously not something I set out to do each day, but hashtag real talk, some days, it just happens. Sometimes Caroline is about to take a header off the couch thinking that the floor will be a soft place to fall. Sometimes my kids are so loud that I must yell louder just to be heard, and some days it just feels damn good. Why does it feel so damn good?

I work really hard every day to be better, but I am still human. Some days these tiny children are the devil incarnate and it takes everything in me to just stay afloat. They sure are smart and awfully sassy for such inexperienced little fellas, . Why the hell are they so damn sassy???

Some days, the hardest part about parenting is that I simply don't have the tools in my belt to deal with everything they toss my way. My parents yelled at me, I got spanked, and they laid the guilt on pretty thick when I disappointed them, and that was about it. I was a pretty good kid (if I do say so myself), so I don't remember a whole lot of "discipline", I just remember having really great parents who loved me. So, since I was *such a great kid* I take a little of what I grew up with, mixed in with a bunch of new stuff I am constantly learning and WAL-AH...I give you... a really great attempt at crafting the tiny minds of tomorrow.

Spanking is a little old school, and my kids are a little young for the "I know you can do better, you have such potential" speech, so I am constantly reading and learning new ways on how to set boundaries for my kids. I am constantly looking for new tools to add to my belt. I try really hard to be the well informed and educated mom, but there are days when I am either at the end of my rope or I just do not know what else to do. So, I yell. 

To set an expectation such as "thou shall not yell" on a Monday, is far too steep a hill to climb. Instead, let's extend ourselves some grace and embrace being human beings. Join me, and let's take a proactive approach to avoiding the mom guilt I would inevitable feel two hours into Monday when I am yelling at Emily for coloring a "pitchure" on Caroline's face. 

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So, here are my goals for the upcoming week:

1. Find 15 minutes in each day that are just mine. Use those minutes to sit in silence with a cup of something warm while I calm my mind and get my feet firmly planted on the ground. (Watching Wendy Williams cannot count towards my reflection time.)

2. Extend grace to someone this week who doesn't necessarily deserve it. Try it once, and then try it again.

3. When the kids misbehave, find the lesson and be their teacher. Remember: my role as mom is to help them learn in all capacities. MUST. FIND. THE. LESSON. What the hell kind of lesson can I teach Emily about coloring on her sisters face? <-----Insert thinking emoji here. 

4. Do something kind for my husband. A random act of kindness that is out of the ordinary.

5. Embrace a strict no phone policy from the time dinner starts until the kids go to bed.

6. Set an alarm each day to wake up 30 minutes before the girls ,to make my bed, get myself together (with shoes on), and have a few minutes to get a few sips of coffee in before I start my day.

7. Find a book about motherhood and read a few pages every night before bed. The book should be thought provoking and should help add to my "mama tool belt". 

8. Write down negative thoughts for one week each time they run across my mind. Beneath them write in BLACK AND WHITE, GIANT LETTERS, positive and empowering thoughts. When I jot down the new uplifting thought, SCRATCH the heck out of the negative one. Commit to replacing those negative thoughts with positive ones. We all have an inner critic, so tell it to pound sand.

9. Get to bed each night by 10PM. 

10. Find a creative outlet and commit to exploring it. I love to write, so I will commit to writing one new piece for the blog each week. I hate to cook, so I will not be whipping together one new dish each week for my family to gag on...I mean eat. 

And that's it!! TEN really great personal goals that I am excited to get after! 

Moms, don't make unrealistic goals. Make goals that excite you! Make goals that inspire you to be a better person. I promise you that the yelling will decrease if you are fulfilling yourself. Investing in yourself and investing in relationships will leave you feeling calm and ready to handle anything life throws your way. 

What are some goals you can make for the week?