Where has my motivation gone? Part 1.

Courtesy of Wikipedia:

mo·ti·va·tion/ˌmōtəˈvāSHən/

Noun:
  1.   The reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way.
  2.   The general desire or willingness of someone to do something.
Synonyms: motive – incentive – stimulus – impulse

With June just around the corner I started to wonder where has my motivation gone. I started this year with such high hopes to get my shit together. I’m pretty much at the same stand still I was when I started my frazzled mom journey. The fabulous weight loss I wanted not even close to getting started. All my organization project have become trapped in my idea book. Even my couponing has taken a back seat to my frazzled mind.  I literally feel like a giant failure. Do I just need to recharge? Do I need a change? Of course I need a change but what kind of change.

I wake up and in my head I make a mental list of all the things I want to check off that day, of course there’s the small items , get dressed, get toddler feed stuff like that. Then there are the big things, unpack another box, exercise, clean something I need to clean. But by the time I’m dropping off the toddler at daycare I completely feel drained and come up with a million and one excuses. I could probably write a book with all the freaking excuses I’ve come up with. Then the post work hours come and my list is back in my head.  I get home and again the excuse book comes out. My biggest one has been my son. I literally spend every minute I have with him once I get home from work. I justify this with the, “I work 10 hours a day and my son deserved to have my full attention once I get home” excuse. The guilt of a single parent I guess and it’s a darn good guilt. Enough that I drop everything to just sit with him and play with cars, or march thru the house pretending were a big band. Then of course bed time comes and again the excuse book comes out and I pull out the “I’m tired ill do it tomorrow” excuse. It’s a vicious cycle I want to stop but don’t know how.

I need to start holding myself accountable for my own actions. My excuses are no excuse for my own laziness; my own inability to want to get things done. When someone wants something bad enough it gets done. This is what I’m so confused about. I want to be thin, I want to be organized I want to be SUPER MOM. What is stopping me. No one is holding me back, no one is holding up the pity card for me. Shit happens, but life moves on and goes on.

My wish list:

–          Wish I had time to exercise.

–          Wish my son was ok playing alone for a while.

–          Wish I had a space to sit and focus on my to do’s

–          Wish to be organized

–          Wish my home could be spotless – Everyday not just cleaning day

–          I WISH I WAS SUPER MOM! ~ Hey a gal can dream right.

Where do I start? How do I start? How I wish motivation was sold in pill form! But the fact is motivation has to come from one self. Deep down inside me lurks the spark, I just have to cultivate it, coax the little sucker to burst into a enormous raging fire that won’t stop until I reach the goals I set for myself. I have to put my big girl pants on and start. NO EXCUSES. Easier said than done but at least I admitted my barriers and acknowledge my own faults.

What are some motivational tool you use??

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It’s a Toddlers World…

Being a mom of a two year old is not easy, being a single mom of a two year old is definitely not easy. Out of nowhere my sweet loving little monkey has turned into an angry gorilla on a rampage searching through the jungle we call a kitchen for juice and snacks. Patience (and a glass of Moscato) have become by best friends. My heart hurts to see my son go through his daily turmoil all because I said no to more fruit snacks or a cookie, but I think in time he will learn limits.

I realize the world to a two year old can be frustrating and I’ve adjusted to giving my son his space while still being very available to him. I’ve also learned that his levels of frustrations can vary from mildly annoyed that the car won’t stay on the top of the pile-up he constructed to the I can’t take this and I’m kicking and tossing all the toys out of my way but you still can’t help me figure it out because I want to tackle this on my own stage.  The kid knows what he wants and how he wants it but still can’t grasp the concept, if at first you don’t succeed try and try again.  But I know it will eventually click but  for now we have to tread  through the waters of having a toddler in the house.

Some insight I have found from reading endless articles online is:

1)      My toddler is trying to establish his independence- what does this mean? Independence!? He is only 2. But to him he wants to tackle the jobs he sees such as eating with a fork and drinking out of the cup. Pick the time and place he will use the bathroom and decide that he would rather have yogurt for dinner rather than the green and yellow veggies on  his plate. His imagination is running wild with ideas. Which leads me to point 2.

2)      My toddler will get frustrated, over and over and over again. He has the end result in his mind but as much as he tries he cannot make it happen. And his only outlet at exerting his frustrations is the screaming crying fits he goes into. I’ve learned to notice the signs of frustration and try to avoid the melting point. I’m also being more reasonable. Sure he refused to eat his dinner but I will  still give  him the piece of fruit he might request.  I’ve also mastered the art of letting him know why something is not getting done. And of course, if it reaches the point of no return my arms are there to comfort him until he decides to try something else.

What have I done to help my toddler be a happy toddler:

Of course I make sure he gets plenty of rest. Just because he’s bigger does not mean he gets less naps. When my little man was around a year old he started to just do one nap during the day and sleep through the night. Now at almost 3yrs old he is still doing his nap during the day. On occasions the nap might get skipped due to our activities and on those days this mama is looking at an early bed time. WOO HOOO. His nap can range from 45 min to about 3 hours but when he wakes up, he wakes up eager to see what the world has to offer him. Not cranky at all.

I give him more choices. What cars or trains we play with, what books we read at night, if he wants to sit down and draw or play with play-doh. Plain and simple choices. This works out well because we can still control the environment without having a bunch of things going on at once. Also he is learning that to move on to the next activity we have to clean up. This has been a difficult concept to have him learn. I know he’s really good at cleaning up at daycare but for me: not so much. But I know we will get there. I use this technique especially when he starts to show frustration with his current task. The blocks are not building as high as he wants, he just keeps at it but I can see his anger building. If I try to just say ok we won’t play this anymore he seems to get even more upset. With him knowing we have another option or toy to play with he seems to accept the change better and allows me the time to clean up and bring out the other toys.

And finally, when he does melt down, because he will melt down, I’m there open arms kissing and rubbing his back letting him just cry his heart out until he feels better. Most time I feel like the bad person because I can’t quite figure out what he wanted. My heart melts every time he sheds a single tear but I also know that it’s a part of his development to go through the process.

I have found some great websites that help me navigate the toddler world. Most have great forums where you can post and ask questions and get responses from other like minded moms who have gone or are going through the same things. Remember we are not alone. No reason to feel like you are.

Helpful websites:

http://www.babycenter.com

http://www.newparent.com/category/toddler/

http://www.circleofmoms.com

How did you navigate the terrible 2’s or 3’s? What were your tips to a happy toddler?

Cheers,

Letty