Do you have a lack of confidence in yourself as a mother? Do you feel like you are constantly second guessing yourself when it comes to the kids? Are you worried about being a good mother, and if you are doing enough for your kids?
These are common worries that we all have, but kids can sense your anxiety and they will know that there is some reason that you feel uncomfortable around them. This in turn can make your struggles even more difficult.
Not being confident in yourself can lead you to playing into the inevitable power struggles with your kids, where you alternate between giving into their demands, and yelling to take your power back when you get to the end of your rope.
This leads your kids to not knowing if they can push your buttons, which only makes them try harder to get their way.
The longer this power struggle goes on, the more kids are likely to be unruly and fight back when you do decide to put your foot down.
Having confidence in yourself, and in the rules that you set for your kids can help you be more consistent, and hold firm in your decisions.
It is time to stop second guessing yourself, and to realize that you are a good mother. You can set consistent boundaries and limits, so that the power struggles with your kids will become less frequent.
Finding confidence in yourself
When you find yourself consistently lacking confidence in yourself, it is time to create a deep well of self-confidence inside.
This starts with realizing that you are a good mother and you do have your kids best interests at heart. You want them to grow up happy and healthy, and are willing to do what it takes to get there.
That makes you a good mother!
There are many ways to improve your confidence as a mom, so that you can present a more authoritative face with your kids.
According to Very Well Family you can:
Boost your baby knowledge
Talk to the experts
Use positive self-talk (and positive self-care)
Build a community of fellow moms
Be selective about the advice that you listen to
Keep up with something you are good at
Do the hard things anyway
All of these tips can help you learn to be more confident in yourself and your parenting over time.
Write it out
As a starting point to gaining more confidence in yourself, you can have a long journal session and write down all the things that are bothering you, and all the things you are doing well.
When you look back at the things that you have done in the past, it can teach you about where you want to go with your parenting in the future.
As you reflect on your parenting issues, and try to problem solve, you can think about:
Examples in the past where you have rocked motherhood, and had your friends impressed with how well you were doing with your kids.
Times when your kids told you that they loved you, when they told you that you are the best mom ever, or gave you another type of compliment.
Once you have written everything out, it can help you get a better handle on what needs to be done. Then, you can talk through your plan of action with your partner to get them on the same page and present a united front to the kids.
Areas for improvement
In addition to the areas that you feel confident, make a list of all the areas of motherhood where you feel like you are struggling. Then, come up with a list of possible solutions for each.
You can research online, take a parenting class, talk to your partner, friends, or a coach or therapist for additional assistance in building the skills that you feel like you are lacking.
Make sure when you ask people for advice, that it is someone who you trust, and whose parenting style you agree with. For example, you don't want to ask your cousin Becky whose kids have been in and out of juvenile facilities, or your child-free coworker.
You can also join many online parenting communities in places like Facebook or Café Mom. Just be sure that the community you join has good moderators, because there are a lot of mean moms out there too, and that is not who you want to be taking advice from!
Ask people for advice who either have kids themselves, or who are trained in working with children. That way, you are getting the best advice possible.
Sometimes, it can be as simple as reading online to find out what you are doing that isn't working.
For example, if you are struggling with setting up a bedtime routine, there are many resources out there that can assist you. You can also talk to your child's pediatrician for additional resources or hire a sleep coach.
That is just one example out of many. Most problems that you face with kids do have solutions, it is just a matter of finding them. If you set aside time each day to devote to researching the areas where you are struggling, then you will have ideas to try and implement to solve your problems in motherhood.
Trust your decisions
Learning to trust your decisions will help you stick with them, instead of giving in to your kids whims. Once you make a decision stick to it.
If you tell them no candy before bed, it is important to stick with that no matter how much they complain. Once you cave in, or change your mind, it lets your kids know that the more they whine, it will eventually get them their way.
This isn't the lesson that we want to be teaching them. In fact, just the opposite.
The more you learn to trust your own decision making ability, the more confidence you will begin to have in yourself.
After researching the problem areas that you have been struggling with in motherhood and enlisting help, you will know that what you are doing is the right thing. This can also help build your confidence.
Setting consistent limits for kids
When you try something new, it will be met with resistance at the beginning. But once you get into a new routine, then the kids will follow the new rules without having to be told over and over again.
Things do become simpler with time and consistency.
By giving in to kids demands sometimes, with enough whining, you are setting up what is called Intermittent Reinforcement.
Reinforcement is what we think of as a reward. When we reinforce intermittently, it means, that there is no consistent schedule. So, by giving in to kids demands, even some of the time, you are setting up an intermittent reinforcement schedule.
This is one of the hardest behavior patterns to break kids out of, because they will keep doing the same thing over and over again (in this case whining to get their way) because they know that sometimes it works. The more often we give in, the harder they will whine to get their way.
Intermittent reinforcement can be counteracted by setting calm but firm limits. No candy after dinner means never. If you give in even once in a while, it will set them back into intermittent reinforcement and whining to get their way.
You can calmly tell them no, repeatedly, until they stop asking.
At the beginning, this may result in quite a bit of tantrums from your child who is used to getting their way. After a few days however, your child will get used to the new rules, and stop fighting against it.
Make sure you stay strong and firm in your decisions, so that the tantrums won't sway you from your decision.
During this time, it is important to make sure that you and your partner are on the same page, so that you can deal with the tantrums together, and support each other emotionally.
You may also need to step away, or put your child in time-out if the tantrums become so extreme that they are upsetting you or other family members. Then, you can take a few deep breaths and calm down yourself.
Once you have found ways to get more confident in your parenting, things will start to get easier with your kids.
Often, when we are struggling as parents it is because we haven't set firm limits with their kids, and instead have set up an intermittent reinforcement schedule. This can lead to tantrums and out-of-control behavior.
Having our kids get out of control at seemingly the drop of a hat can make us further question our parenting skills, and become even more likely to give in to tantrums, when in fact we should be doing the opposite.
Learning to have more confidence as a parent can take time, self-reflection, and enlisting help from others, especially our partners.
Being a good mother means that you want the best in life for your kids, and I can only assume that if you are reading parenting tips, that is your earnest wish. Bad parents don't care enough to read about parenting.
So, firstly know that you are a good mom. Then, do what needs to be done to increase your confidence and get your kids under control.
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