May 13, 2018 Liza Swedarsky, MD FacebookTwitterPinterestMother’s Day is often the time your family chooses to celebrate You with hugs, cards, gifts, perhaps breakfast in bed, or the appearance of less screen time. However, I’ve learned the day often passes by a little less relaxing and peaceful than envisioned. The reality is Motherhood is a selfless endeavor, and the show must go on. Dishes still fill the sink, laundry remains to be washed and folded, arguments between siblings are hard to ignore, and the carpools are still in motion; Mother’s Day or not. I’ve evolved to view Mother’s Day as a time to focus and concentrate on doing the things I love in addition to being a Mom. I’ve also implemented a little Mother’s Day Celebratory Swag almost every day of the week. I take a time out. I create time to relax, reflect and be present. I also regularly acknowledge when I look in the mirror that I am doing the best I can, in this time, with the resources I have. After all, as many Moms do, I give 200% every day of the year. Our goal should be guilt free participation in the living moments that bring us peace and joy. When you make time to feed your own soul, you will have more to give to your children. Here are five suggestions, which I have embraced, that have helped me to be more present, a better Mother, feel less stressed, and live with intention and gratitude. Have no expectations on Mother’s Day. On Mother’s Day, focus on gratitude, for having the opportunity. Focus on the ways you’ve placed love and service at the center of your life. Expectations often breed disappointments. Celebrate yourself on a job well done. If you have areas you would like to improve, have an internal dialogue on how to embrace positive changes. Don't be hard on yourself. Wake up early and do something you love. Sleeping in can be overrated. Waking up early and honoring alone time allows you to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea, read a book, or sit in silence before the house comes to life. This time alone will replenish you. Morning affirmations are a great way to start your day. Meditate I embodied a mediation practice almost seven years ago and it has changed my life. Every morning for 30 minutes I meditate in a dedicated space. This practice has rewarded me with full recognition of the gift of the present moment. My mind is quieted. I am able to focus on the here and now instead of worrying about my to-do list. Get Moving Whether it is a walk in nature, a yoga class, hike, a run, body-pump, or cycling, prioritize time to get your body in motion. Exercise combats fatigue, heightens creativity, and promotes strength and weight management. You will also sleep better. Mother’s Day is the perfect day to engage on that long walk you’ve been putting off. But do not stop there. Schedule in time during your week to exercise just as you do dropping your children off to soccer, dance, or countless other activities. The healthier you are, the more energy you will have to explore their interests. Make a Vision List of things you would like to manifest in your life. We spend too much time focusing on what we don’t want in our lives than what we desire. I ask myself on a regular basis “What is my soul seeking?” This morning I started my day off after my mediation practice writing down goals and visions I have for my life in the areas of health, relationship, parenting, finances, and my life’s work. By writing down goals and an ideal vision in these areas, I focus my consciousness on possibility and hope instead of lack. Our thoughts and intentions are powerful. Energy must be directed in exploring them. I keep these vision statements in my journal and reflect on them intermittently for 30-day intervals.