By L. J. Kunkel
"New Year, New You!"
I see this everywhere, and I can't help but roll my eyes a little. Don't get me wrong--I'm all for motivation and self-improvement. Kudos to those pursuing new awesomeness this year!
But I'm a mother of three youngsters. At this point in my life I'm just trying to keep my head above water and not go completely crazy. Considering 92 percent of resolutions fail, I'm keeping it real this year with more modest goals.
1. Get up earlier. Start the day with an hour of yoga. (Fast forward to alarm buzzing at ungodly hour...) Nope, nope, nope. Sleep wins.
But maybe let's try ten minutes earlier--just enough time to consume my coffee so I don't bite everyone's head off the moment I hear them bounding down the stairs.
2. Prep ahead. That means kids' backpacks and lunches pre-packed, clothes laid out the night before, a to-do list for the next day, structured daily schedule for the little ones, and dinners planned out for the week.
Bahaha! Just kidding. The only thing I'll be prepping is my solid expectation for morning madness.
3. Eat healthier. I'd really like to get more superfoods into my diet. Bring on the kale, broccoli, avocado, magic spices, those chia things that get stuck in your teeth and--wait--chocolate is a superfood, right? Good. Let's go with that one.
4. Work out more. By "more" I mean putting the chocolate in the basement so I have to take the stairs to get to it.
Okay, I really should take this one seriously. Considering the many proven benefits of exercise, it could really change my life for the better. But hey, baby steps, right?
5. Actually fold and put away the laundry. I should at least do one basketful before the next mountain of mess. Eh, who am I kidding? Let's just accept the laundry as the perpetual pile of doom it is.
6. Stop apologizing all the time. Why am I always apologizing? WHY?! It's usually not even remotely my fault. Sorry my house is so messy. Sorry I'm not more organized. Sorry I spent five extra minutes hiding in the bathroom after my shower. Sorry my kid is crying in the middle of the store. Sorry I didn't make your favorite meal tonight. Sorry we can't invite your entire freaking class to your birthday party. Sorry you got sick because you keep putting things in your mouth even though you know that's how germs get in.
Enough of that! We really need to come up with a replacement phrase for this. How about, "Well, that's life. Deal with it."
7. Stop doing everything for everybody. I really gotta stop doing for them what they can do for themselves.
First grader: You are fully capable of putting away all the toys and art and junk in your room and finding something non-destructive to do when you're bored. Toddler: You can pull down your own pants to go potty. (I know you can since you seem to have no problem doing it when you want to run around naked.) Baby: Well, your job is to drool and poop. You're pretty much the boss right now. Enjoy it while you can.
Lofty goals, I know. Time to tackle 'em!
Originally published on parent.com.
L. J. Kunkel is a fitness trainer who spends most of her time chasing 3 boys and 20 mini dinosaurs (er, chickens). See more from her at fitmixmom.com.