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Don't be a Martyr Mommy: Why Downtime is a Good Time for Mom

By Susan Cody HERWriter Guide
 
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I have to say that until recently, even as a parent, I didn't understand why mothers and fathers celebrated back-to-school day so much. If you don't want your kids around, why have them, I thought.

But this year I have second, third and fourth graders heading back to school. It has been a long, long summer with no camps, not much babysitter help and as a work-from- home parent. And this time I'm looking forward to school being in like fish crave water!

Being a work-from-home parent with kids in school all day is a vacation in a way. A cleaner house all day and ... some silence! A kind of peace that allows one to focus, concentrate and get more work done in an hour that seems humanly possible.

It's almost like downtime but not really -- downtime is when it's all about feeling good, feeling calm, relaxed and then subsequently invigorated. And sometimes it hasn't much to do with work or kids.

A happy wife and mother makes a happy family. A cliché, perhaps, but one with merit. "Martyr mommies" are rarely really happy and nor are those that surround them.

Here are some ways that working and stay-at-home moms can have time to themselves, that will make them and their families a lot happier in the long run.

A time out, even with your kids, is vital. According to an EmpowHER article "Mommy Time and Family Vacation Time Essential to a Healthy Family", writer Darlene Oakley found research that validates this.

Oakley wrote, "“Refusing to take time off burns people out and wreaks havoc on productivity. Vacation deprivation is one reason workers are reporting more mistakes, anger, and resentment at co-workers, according to the Families & Work Institute”— and the same can be said about the way we treat our spouses and our children and other important people in our lives."

But time out just for mothers is also important.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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