Stay at home moms need a break, despite the fact that 92% of society believes that that’s all stay at home moms do, is take breaks.
I just made that percentage up, but it feels right.
The actual truth is, stay at home moms almost never get a full on, off the clock break… unless and until they learn how to schedule one.
Insert this post.
You need a break.
I’m going to show you how to take one.
Not only is it okay, it’s like, how else are you meant to survive? And not just survive but thrive?
Look, we are moms so we’re pretty good at taking care of all the things, right?
But we’re still human.
God, in His perfect wisdom, designed humans- moms and all- to need rest. And in His overwhelming mercy and grace, He designed a day specifically for rest. We call it Sabbath Sunday.
Then, because He’s God and He knew we, moms specifically, would hem and haw and find other things to do every day of the week… He blessed the sabbath, called it holy, and commanded we observe it.
Is it okay to need a break? Mama, you’d be superhuman to not need one.
Mom burnout is a real thing and it can be devastating. It’s no secret that moms are the atmosphere of the home and we sort of are the glue that holds the whole shebang together.
So if we’re struggling… the whole durn family is camped out on the struggle bus.
It isn’t just that momming is tiring, though it is.
It’s the momming and.
Now, if you’ve been around the blog awhile, you’ll know that I am a big advocate for the “momming and.” I preach the more than a mom message in every post.
That isn’t to make you feel like you’re not doing enough. It’s to help you feel less guilty that you’re doing beyond momming stuff.
But when you add to things to your list of responsibilities, you add to your need to develop good resting habits.
So here’s what you can do to ensure you get the break you deserve and the rest you’ve been designed to need.
Find ways to turn Sunday church day into Sabbath rest day. Sure it was commanded in the Old Testament and many church goers will tell you that you no longer need to observe it today, but is that the end of the story?
Could it be that God wasn’t demanding we sabbath for His own good pleasure? Could it be because it would be beneficial for us and the way we were designed?
And let’s not forget, before it was written on stone tablets, it was something God created and observed himself. That, my friend, is reason enough for me.
It doesn’t look exactly like sitting down all day, not lifting a finger, and doing nothing for no one.
More so, it looks like lunch out after church so I don’t have to cook, playing board games in the middle of the day because relaxing is the priority, and arranging for Mondays to be your laundry days so that you can turn a blind eye to those stinky piles during your sabbath.
This can be a rather irritating admonishment if your lack of sleep is not your choice. If baby needs you, baby needs you.
If five year old needs you, five year old needs you.
Some nights just don’t get as smoothly as you might desire.
But if you’re not getting enough sleep because you can’t stop scrolling, or binging on netflix, or even turning the page in your latest book… that’s on you, mama.
Give yourself a bedtime and make sure you get at least 7 solid hours of zzz.
Quiet time is not just for the kids, in our house.
In my life, quiet time is just as much for me as for them.
It is not for catching up on house chores, running errands, or paying bills. It is for peace and quiet and rest.
There are times when I’ve been too far behind to sit down and put my feet up, but those times are few and far between. I guard our quiet time like a mama bear guards her cubs… and I resemble a mama bear when I don’t get it, too.
I am a big big fan of napping in the afternoon. Actually, that’s usually how I spend our 30-40 minutes of quiet time.
Some people can’t nap. Others take 2 hour naps or it’s not worth laying down, for them. Me? I love short power naps. Lay down, eyes closed, rest, rest, rest, drift just to the edge of oblivion, and SNAP… back up and ready to go!
My mom says that sounds miserable. I’ve found it to be just the thing that gets me through until bedtime.
Stay at home moms need a break, but that doesn’t always mean to sit or sleep. Sometimes, you just need a break from the noise.
Or a break from the house.
Often times a walk out in nature is enough to revitalize you. Especially in the fall, who doesn’t love looking at the leaves change color?
Which brings me to my next point…
I personally believe that when I’m outside, I am closest to heaven. Of course, it really depends where outside you are. Being outside of the local slaughterhouse is a vastly different heaven than our little six acre homestead, but I digress.
Maybe that’s why country living was so important for my husband and I to pursue. There’s just something about the great outdoors that removes you from the demands of life and gives you space to breathe deeply!
Half the reason I decided to homeschool was because I hated the morning rush!
Okay, it was a little more complex than that, but I definitely don’t miss trying to cram three hours worth of living into 45 minutes before the bus pulls up.
In fact, the reason I wake up so early is so that I can allot myself enough time before I have to milk the goats or mom my kids, to just sit, sip, and simply be.
It’s not that I need a “break” as soon as I wake up, obvi, but it feels like a little luxury that fuels my soul and carries me through the morning to-dos.
Creating a schedule ensures that I get everything done that needs to get done. I especially enjoy creating certain tasks for certain days of the week.
For example, Monday is laundry and tidy day. I never schedule errands or play days for Mondays, because knowing that I have that entire day to “catch up” from the weekend’s mess, really helps me to relax and enjoy my weekends more!
If every Monday, I was running errands or grocery shopping, I’d never be able to spend so much time on Sunday just hanging out with my family and letting chores wait.
Plus, another added benefit is, when I’m done with that day’s task, I can be done. I don’t have to mop quick on Monday night because I know that Wednesday is floor day… and all of the vacuuming and mopping will be done then.
Having assigned days for the week helps me rest more each day.
Whether it’s you and hubby or you and your lady friends, having “dates” scheduled that draws you away from your responsibilities in the house, are a great way to recharge.
Sometimes, I’m guilty of just wanting to chill as a downtime activity. I convince myself that leaving the house will require too much effort and energy.
Ultimately, though, if I’m in the house, my kiddos will find me. And while I love love love my babes, being on the clock does not make for good rest. Every so often, even just once a month, it’s a good practice to get away from the every day ordinary.
Stay at home moms need physical breaks, yes. But sometimes, we need mental breaks, too.
The best way I’ve found to still my racing mind is to close my eyes and repeat a verse that speaks into whatever my mind is racing about. Or, likewise, just repeating a phrase from some promise of scripture… the slow, steady repetition gives my mind the break that it needs.
The methodical movements of the pen across the paper, the way you have to intentional structure your thoughts, the noiseless serenity that you just won’t get from scrolling social media channels… so much goodness to be had in the journaling habit.
Not only will it help you to rest in practice, it gives you a place to process your emotions and habits, create a plan for anything that needs to be altered or improved upon, and assess where you are and where you’re going.
If you don’t develop self-awareness, it’s hard to recognize your need for a break before you actually break down.
It’s unreasonable to expect yourself to go go go without ever needing to stop, rest, relax, and recharge.
Even if you felt like you could go without a break, what a soul refreshing experience it is to actively and intentionally decide to be present, push responsibilities aside, and just breathe in your life!
We are called to steward well what the Lord has blessed us with, and that includes our family. But guess what, mama? That also includes your own self, too. God can’t use someone who’s too depleted, too sick, to run down to move.
So choose 1, 2, or all 11 of these restful ideas to implement in your life immediately, so that you don’t end up burning your candle at both ends. Yes?
Having an identity crisis in motherhood is more common than you might expect, and choosing …September 19, 2023