Category Archives: change your attitude

#11 Carve Out Some Space

Recently I moved.  We moved to a smaller, cleaner house.  We got rid of some things we no longer needed, which might e the only good think about moving.  Purging.  And starting fresh with less.  It was a perfect opportunity for me to carve out some quality space for myself.  My family and I share a lot of things:  food,  closets, dressers, drawers in the bathroom, bedrooms, beds… really, it’s a lot.  I find lately that I am craving more space for myself, even privacy.  I want passwords no one else knows.  I want desk drawers that lock.  I want to sleep on the couch sometimes and have it be accepted as what it is:  mommy needing some room to breathe.

My first project has been to set up my desk, my OWN desk.  Unlike Sylvia P, I can’t have a whole room of my own, even the storage closet it too precious a space.  But I can create my own little corner.  I have a desk with three drawers and two small bookcases.  These are all for me.  I decorate them simply in a way that inspires me, fill my drawers with craft supplies and my writing books.  I haven’t sat there yet, but just knowing this little oasis is waiting for me makes me smile.

Soon I will learn to carve out some time as well.

So be bold! Be brave!  Find a used desk, move some furniture, create a little nook for reading, writing, collaging, collecting yourself.  Let yourself have some physical space in your home to remind yourself of the emotional and spiritual space you deserve, and must learn to take.

#9 Put Yourself On Top of the List

Written by Donna Davies-Bracket for I Love Mondays Life Coaching.

Three Questions That Will Change Your Life

Like every parent, your day is filled with things other people want or need you to do.

You are great at getting things done for your kids. And you’re not so bad at doing around the house either.

But it isn’t enough.

You rarely get to do the things you really want to do. You continually put off the stuff that matters most.

The reason is simple.

You mistake what you need to do for your family and what needs to get done at home with what is important to you.

Not that your family and your home aren’t important – they are.

But there are other things you have been meaning to do. There is more to you than just your home and your kids. Right?

But we tend to get caught up in taking care of others instead of ourselves.

If you’re like most parents, you spend the day reacting to what needs your attention most right now. You go from one thing to the next until the day is over.

But, at the end of it, you feel like something is missing. You didn’t get what you wanted done.

Enter the three magic questions. Three little questions to get control of your day.

  1. What is important for me to do for my family today?
  2. What is important for me to do around the house today?
  3. What is important for me to do just for me today?

When you focus on what is important just for today, you increase your ability to do it.

Knowing what your family needs on any given day is easy. But this will help you get even better at delivering on what is important to them. You know, like showing up on time today or coming through on your promise to make cookies this afternoon.

And knowing what needs to be done at home, frees you up to quit after doing it. There will always be more tomorrow. You don’t have to do it all today.

But you will also know what you want for yourself not just what others need from you.

And that distinction will change your life.

The answer to the last question won’t seem as important. It won’t be urgent. And you will be tempted to put it off until the “real” work is done.


Do your own thing first.

The other things on the the list will get done. You almost always come through on that stuff already. But you almost never come through on your own stuff.

If you don’t put it at the top of the list, it won’t get done.

And doing it will make you feel good all day. And soon you will stop thinking you never have time for yourself.

Get in the habit of asking these three questions each morning. Do your own thing first. Then move on to the other important stuff.

Everything else is gravy.

Now it’s your turn: Put a small pad and a pen beside your bed. Ask yourself these three little questions every morning for a week and see what happens.
Have a wonderful week!

All the best,


P.S. Try it right now. I would love to hear what happens in your day!

#6 Enjoy (don’t Endure)

Are We Having Fun Yet? That is the title of the first parenting book I’ve read in 2012.  Okay, so it’s the first one I’ve read in 2011 too.  And no, I’m not really having fun.

Those who know me have heard a lot of complaints about parenthood from me.  I started this blog to help me change that, to focus on the positive.  I thought maybe by writing about the things I can do, rather than the things I can’t, might help me start feeling adequate as a mother, and maybe even happy.  You may notice that I haven’t written many posts here.  I guess the complaints are winning.

Reluctantly, I picked up this book at our local, amazing, toy library.  Are We Having Fun Yet?  The 16 Serets of Happy Parenting by Kay Willis and Maryann B. Brinley.  Sometimes the cheesy sounding books really are just that, cheesy.  They are surface and too simple to be useful in what I consider a complicated life.

The book however, really is perfect for where I am right now.  It’s short and sweet, and not preachy.  It really all boils down to how you can change your attitude to enjoy, rather than endure, parenting.  Of course, there are some other good tips in there as well, and lots of stories about how Kay raised then children, and how successful she was at that.  I do find myself feeling a little guilty at times while reading it though.  Kay has always wanted to be a mother, since she was nine years old.  Ever since I was nine years old I have wanted to be single, and to be childless.  Of course I changed my mind momentarily… but that desire does come back now that I am a mother.  I’ve read a lot of great articles this month though that have been helping me change my bad attitude about mothering.

The best resources will meet you where you are, and present an honest picture of mothering: it’s incredibly hard (an understatement), but has unimaginable and heavenly rewards.

The first suggestion in this book was that happy parents enjoy each developmental stage their child is in, instead of enduring it.  So, I’m trying to take that to heart.  Instead of hoping and planning for that next stage that will be so much better, so much easier, I am trying to notice the sweet things that my children are doing in the stages they are in.  Instead of saying, “It will be so much easier when she stops wetting her pants!”  I’m trying to focus on “It’s so fun to see the delight she takes in making it to the potty on her own initiative.”  Someday soon it won’t seem like an accomplishment at all, but just an unconscious part of her daily life.

When you are in a crisis moment and are crying on the couch, don’t pick up this book and feel guilty.  Just eat some chocolate and be kind to yourself.  Allow those moments.  But when you lay in bed and night, thinking over the day, wanting some ideas for how tomorrow could be better, read this book.  Try making a list of all the things you enjoy about your child, and tomorrow, try to cherish them.