How to prevent mom burnout?

My story:

On a late night, last September, when our baby was asleep and I was mindlessly scrolling on my phone,  I asked my husband,  ‘What is your opinion about me buying a domain/hosting and getting serious about blogging?’ His instant reply was, ‘Go for it if that makes you happy. Maybe it might end up as your turning point.’

It had been a few months since I resigned from my job. I had fully immersed myself in diaper-changing and puree-feeding duties. Hobbies – I had no time or energy or both to indulge in one. It was impossible to read with a baby in tow. I was not continuing with the Quranic Tafseer studies I used to do. The last time I went out to a spa was before my pregnancy. As for meeting up with my friends alone for a girl’s day out – it had been ages since I even called anyone.  I just realised without doing anything for myself, I was on the fastest route to a mom burnout.

exhausted mom

Why I started this blog?

Starting this blog was my way of enhancing my creative side. To dabble in writing here and there. To have something to wake up to at the dawn hours to work on (besides prayer/cooking/usual chores). To have something that excited me. To learn something I never knew until then (Hello Hosting, Coding, GIMP and Canva, I am looking at all of you!). To have something just for MYSELF.

Almost a year now, Alhamdulilah, it is my happy space. Not only have I got a few opportunities but also met some amazing women who have a creative flair in their work and a way with words, camera or the painting brush. It inspires me to become better, to learn new things, to research solid facts before I write and even improve my own personal life (Planners and schedules!!)

I am not saying I have achieved motherhood-nirvana and that I have a Zen attitude. Job rejections one after another, not being able to clear an exam I really wanted to and a host of other problem weighs me down on some days. To combat mom burnout and to achieve a state of constant bliss is an ever continuing journey. I seek to improve myself. To be a better mom and wife. To be a person happy inside and out. To be a better Muslimah.burn out, mom burnout, live the life

 

Review: From Burnout to Bliss – A Muslim Mom’s guide to Self Care

 

Hence when sister Nazima from ‘Nutrition by Nazima’ gave an opportunity to read and review her latest book titled From Burnout to Bliss: A Muslim Mom’s guide to self-care, I jumped at it faster than the toddler who finds hidden chocolates, since I felt this book would be apt to me now, in my current situation.

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I have not been disappointed. This book is a concise self-help book which helps mothers to identify their weakness and shortcoming and start taking care of themselves in the light of Quranic teaching. To start living the life they dream for themselves. To not get in a rut of diapers and feeding bottles and let complacency take over their youthful young adult years. To explore their creative side and enhance their skills. To not let motherhood weigh you down but instead to consider it as an impetus to work harder and smarter.

About the first section:

The first section precisely says – Time to put yourselves first. In the Desi mom burnout, self care,world, we think it is wrong to put ourselves first. It is considered a crime if you leave your baby with a caretaker/baby sitter/ guardian and go out on a date with your spouse. (How can they leave the child alone?) A vacation alone? (How can a mother enjoy herself alone without her child?) Our culture defines the mother as a central role. Someone without hobbies and things to do for herself. Someone on the constant road of sacrifice. Some one who sacrifices her sleep and her health to maintain a happy home. Yet how wrong are we when put this undue pressure on a mother and not let herself be?

A few lessons from this section:

As a mother, we too should start changing our internal dialogue and start taking care of ourselves. To tell oneself, ‘I am a priority for myself’. Try to be alone at least once a day or once a week (whatever is suitable for you) or indulge in an activity solely for your happiness. Martyr parenting is in our blood but martyr parenting only leads to kids with entitled feeling. Some one who thinks his every need is going to be met by an adult.

Learn to take help – From your partner, family, friends anyone. It does not show you are weak or inefficient.  It only shows you also need a break! This has been a difficult task for me – I hated taking help from anyone especially during the initial days.

If you are going to take one sentence from this book it should be this – ‘If you say yes to everyone, you end up saying no to yourself’

This book has an excellent section detailing about how you can go about planning your day between home chores,  fitness, work, Ibadah etc so that you are not overwhelmed with the work load instead everything is designated to every member of the household and has a proper time schedule. It also has a weekly fitness planning section.

The second section :

self care, healthy living, exercise, The next section is  Self-care through a healthy lifestyle and healthy eating. As a stay at home mum now, I do not exercise often as I want to but then jump on the scale as often as I can. What an easy way to stress myself! Instead, the writers tell us to skip the scale and instead have an exercise plan inculcated into our daily routine even if it is as less as 15 minutes.

The book also has a few healthy meal recipes. Including breakfast, dinner and even snacks. I mean snacks that are healthy not just loaded with sugar and calories. As a mom, there is a time in the day when you cannot just go on anymore. The 4 pm slump they call it. There are many energy boosting snacks mentioned here which are easy to make so as to combat this exhaustion and fatigue.

It also has fill-up forms/questionnaires to help you collect your thoughts, make a list of what can be done to change yourself, people who can help you, words for positive reinforcement etc

 The final section:

The third part of the book is an interesting section called ‘Mothers like you’. I loved this part since this has anecdotes from mothers and their experiences handling work, blogs, or a business.  Some inspiring people out there and tips from them on what helped them to achieve a balance and be successful in all aspects of their life.

Finally, this book ends with you are never alone. During a 2 AM feeding session or toddler tantrum in the supermarket, we often fall into the loneliness trap. Loneliness is sometimes a price we pay. This book gently reminds us that we are never alone and to take help when needed from family, friends and appropriate professionals.

Opinion and my recommendations:

Self care for moms, Mom burn out, tired mom, exhausted momThe only addition I would like is more anecdotes from the Sunnah, Quranic etiquettes and stories of Sahabah so we can co-relate how mothers of that era managed their time, children and still were effective functioning members of their society.

Overall an excellent book for new mom’s or mom who wants to find the balance between being a mom and being an individual. This book teaches to push ourself to higher standards and not settle for mediocrity but to do it from a place of self-love. (This is a different perspective for me since I often berate myself while doing so!) It gently reaffirms a positive mindset with a healthy lifestyle leads to a healthy individual who is a happy mom raising confident children who can be leaders of tomorrow thus leading to the betterment of our Ummah (society) as a whole.

WHERE TO BUY THE BOOK?

Nutrition By Nazima (Use the affiliate code DRSHAHIRA10 to avail a discount of 10%. Valid until September 25, 2017)

(An Ebook was sent for the purpose of review. All opinion and views are my own)

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11 thoughts on “How to prevent mom burnout?

  1. Sounds interesting and very beneficial. Thanks for the reviw…will surely recommend it to family and friends. What better way to stay productive than reading a productive book and acting on it!

  2. I have been thinking a lot about the importance of self-care for mothers and this couldn’t have come at a better time. It not only helps us from a burnout but also sets an example for our children, especially daughters, about taking care of themselves. Jazakallahu Khairan for the review!

  3. Many mommies go through this phase and I am happy that Allhumdulliah you got to choose what you like to do….book sounds really helpful…I strongly believe in ‘How you live is what makes us’….

  4. This book sounds wonderful! Honestly, I think there is soo much importance with making sure we also remember ourselves. We put soo much pressure on ourselves as mums sometimes. I have to have a look at this book!

  5. Lovely post, will be sharing it with my friends who are mums. I do think mums should know when to take a step back. If the mum is burning out nothing gets done and shes miserable which is not the way things should be. May Allah make it easy for all the Mums out there Insha-Allah. (Www.spicyfusionkitchen.com)

  6. I love this!! Thanks for your very beautiful and insightful review. I am not a mother, but I totally agree with everything you reviewed. Some of my friends, married or single, think its a crime to put themselves first ever as long as some is providing for them and my argument is “if you can’t help/take care of yourself how can you help, take care of others”. They think I am westernized and brainwashed or something and I am just glad I know the importance and benefits of self care; sanity.

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