I am a work at home mom. And I have been for several years. I don’t beat around the bush. And I don’t put up with bullshit. I am told in person and online, “I wish I could be more like you.” Most people talk about how they could never do that. They can…they just make an active decision not to do that. Throughout the course of my entire life, I’ve made the active decision to not be like other people for one reason or another. And, yes, let’s call it what it is: judgment. It isn’t an “I’m better than they are” or an “I’m right and they are wrong” scenario (all of the time, anyway). It was 100% an “I don’t want that for me,” and we are all entitled to our own boundaries and desires.
Here are the 7 keys to living my best life as a work from home mom. If you choose to embrace them or only some of them or how your choose to interpret or embrace some or all of them may vary your results because you and I do not live the same life…and you should also make your own decisions and decide what is important to you, your results may vary.
I Decided I Didn’t Need the Approval of Others to Be Happy as a Work at Home Mom
If you know anything about me, you know that I really don’t give a fuck what other people think of me as a person. The fact is, my life is my life. Their life is their life. Your life is your life. If you have nothing better to do than worry about what I’m doing, you need professional help and a hobby.
This dates far back to childhood when many of the adults on my mother’s side of the family never had anything nice to say about me. It didn’t improve as an adult, by the way. Nothing I could ever do meant I was good enough for them. Frankly, none of it matters. Of course, as a child that shit matters.
As an adult, you have to realize that happiness is your job. If you put your desire to be happy on a single person, they will fail you whether they want to or not. Not to be a Debbie Downer, no one lives forever.
I Decided to Eat What Kept Me Health & Happy
I’m vegan, but I don’t necessarily think everyone should go vegan. What got me to this point is a bit of a journey…I’ll spare you. I will say that I took a journey that caused me to ditch the standard American diet and eat better. I did it in small, sustainable steps (calm down and stop crying over your Cheez-Whiz…I’m not coming to your house to clean out your cupboards, gawd). I dropped 30~ pounds. I basically got to the point where I felt so much better.
My husband isn’t vegan and neither are my sons (or dogs or cat). This is my journey. I do it because it works best for me. I drink greens every morning. I take an extra B supplement. For the record, I had problems with B vitamins before going vegan or vegetarian. No, I am not and was not anemic. It’s just always been a thing. It’s a mystery.
Buy & Read: Thug Kitchen 101: Fast as F*ck: A Cookbook
I Decided I Didn’t Have to Accept What Doesn’t Make Sense
I’ve always been a person of logic. Of course, for some people, I value the relationship and if they aren’t hurting anyone with whatever it is they believe that doesn’t make sense, whatever.
However, for my own personal happiness? I do not have to accept a goddamn thing that doesn’t make sense. For example, we all have that one friend that caffeine or sugar just doesn’t seem to affect…and then we have that opposite friend who can’t even look at caffeine or sugar or we have to peel them off the wall? So, we know that bodies can react differently to the same substance. Clearly. So, we don’t all have to accept that when Mercury goes into retrograde that everything will go to shit. That doesn’t make sense. And, sorry (not sorry), some use it as an excuse to be an asshole. No, just own it. You wanted to behave badly.
You get to choose. You get to choose what to accept. If something does not make sense to you, you don’t have to accept it. That includes your family customs. Yes, that may mean making some hard choices.
I Decided I Am Worth More Time & Money (to Myself)
First, not everyone wants to be self-employed / own a business / have a side-hustle. And that’s okay. There is no requirement in life for you to ever do that. Your life is your life. You are still worth more time and money even to yourself.
So what does that even mean to be worth more time and money to myself? It means that I refuse to beat myself up over what I do for myself in regards for the time I take for myself and what I spend on myself. Two of my three children are adults. My third child turns 11 this year (2020) and has autism. I work from home…he does not stay with a caregiver. He is either with me or with my husband, his father. He is non-verbal. So, how I carve out time for me is different (first of all, I am super introverted…I work from home…I like time at home…I like quiet…so self-isolation has me living my best life anyway).
- I don’t have to justify to anyone how much time I want to spend on any evening, weekend, or time I take off crocheting, cross stitching, or anything else. And yes, this was a problem once in my life (in a previous marriage).
- I am entitled to downtime just like any other human on the planet.
- If I want to jump from craft to craft or project to project, I’mmma do it.
And with money, it’s like the saying goes on TikTok, “High maintenance? Honey, I can be high maintenance when I’m paying the bills.” For the record, I am not the traditional version of “high maintenance.” I don’t tan, have hair extensions, get my brows threaded, buy name brand makeup, etc. But I do buy some interesting things.
I Accepted Who I Am
I don’t fight who I am. I accept who I am. I am a duality. I have good qualities and not so good qualities. It isn’t necessarily that these qualities are “bad.” We just don’t see them as great parts of who we are…at least not initially.
I used to be told how bad it was for me to be a smart girl. By adults. In the 80s and 90s. Being smart certainly had its disadvantageous during childhood, but I far preferred standing out. I also preferred finishing my work before others. It wasn’t finishing before others as a sense of superiority…I learned that I hated shit hanging over my head.
I accepted I was deadline driven and liked checking things off a to-do list. I accepted I was a perfectionist…and accepted my OCD diagnosis and my CPTSD diagnosis.
Most importantly, I realized that I perfectionism is something to frame as an attention to detail…I just happen to be really, really good at it (OCD) along with risk analysis (CPTSD). I learned that a diagnosis doesn’t define my entire fucking life. It is only a piece of who I am.
I Take Care of Myself as If I Am My Own Best Friend (Because I Am)
We are so fucking mean to ourselves while we secretly hope others will be nice to us. And we worry, at the same time, what others think of us…we are so preoccupied with with ourselves…so while you are busy worrying about what someone else thinks of you and whether they will like you, they are busy worrying about the same thing…and you are also each busy trashing yourselves on all the reasons you won’t like each other.
Being human is fucking hard. Really fucking hard. So, I learned (keyword) to treat myself as if I am my own best friend. If I had a best friend, and I heard my best friend say even a quarter of the shit I used to say to myself? I’d have to slap her in the face with her own awesomeness. I also do other nice things for myself…like buy myself little trinkets.
I Make My Own Rules & Agreements
I do not have to live by all of society’s rules and agreements. Of course, there are some I live by (and I am not talking about federal and state laws along with city ordinances, hairsplitters…) because they just help me get along with humanity. There are some, though, that are stupid. You know, the shit society, your community, and your family and friends say that make you wonder WTF is wrong with them…
- That you have to work in a job you hate for your entire life
- That making money has to be really hard
- That you have to end up hating your married life
- That you have to be a stressed out parent all the time
Like, whatever it is…. I simply do not agree with “writers cannot make money from home.” I was told that and told that and told that. I am still told that by people who didn’t have the dedication to do it. I’m doing just fine, thank you. I was told I would always have to struggle with money. I don’t believe that. I was told that I would always have to struggle with everything. No. No I do not. I reject that and construct my own agreement.
You can do the same, but you have to reject the other stuff.