Are you landing in your zone of thriving most days?

It’s a tricky thing talking about self-care to mothers.  Something happens when we cross over the motherhood threshold that radically changes the terrain of our lives.

It’s called sacrifice.

We enter a life of self-sacrifice like we have never known before.  Our lives are now tethered to another in a way that requires a level of self-sacrifice that most of us happily, willingly and completely sign up for.

As my children’s mother, I want to sacrifice for them.  But sacrifice has become a confusing issue for modern mothers.

On one hand we are culturally (and I believe genetically) designed to fully and whole-heartedly accept the walk of sacrifice in order to reap the tremendous benefits and joys of motherhood (not to mention the tremendous benefits of self growth).

On the other hand, we are chastised not to lose ourselves in the name of our mothering identity.  To reclaim a strong sense of our own self and personhood and prioritize our own self care as non-negotiable.

My take?

It’s a farce that self-sacrifice and self-care are pitted against one another.

We must learn to hold both of them at the same time in order to shift into our zone of thriving.  A mothering life rich in both self-sacrifice and self-care has built in harmony.  They are natural checks and balances for each other.

It is when one becomes dominant to the other that things get radically off kilter.

When you’ve experienced an imbalance of far too much self-sacrifice with very little self-care, you aren’t self-sacrificing any longer you are now firmly in the zone of self-neglect. 

And if you find yourself less sacrificial, less generous and less able to give deeply to the people in your life that matter the most to you, you aren’t experiencing self-care, you have now slipped into self-absorption.

Unfortunately, many mothers find themselves toggling back and forth between self-neglect and self-absorption…never knowing how to find that sweet spot that honors both the deeply generous and sacrificial life we want to have for our family and the deeply self-connected and nurtured life we want to extend to ourselves.

A vibrant mother’s balance is in the zone of both self sacrifice and self-care.

And more specifically, in a place where one reinforces and enhances the other.  When self care is non- negotiable, restorative and prioritized in a mom’s life, she has the very best of herself to offer her family.  And as she offers her very best to her family, herself and the world…she models to her children how part of living with your well being intact is caring for yourself as you care for others.

So where on the scale do you land?

self neglect  << self sacrifice <> self care >> self absorption

And if you aren’t in your zone of thriving, what could you possibly do today to help steer your life toward your own center space?