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How to help mom find purpose and balance

By Mary Richards | Posted - May 10th, 2013 @ 7:34am

SALT LAKE CITY — You know the saying, "When momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." But sometimes moms need help to find their purpose and balance, and others in their lives need to step up for mom.

Mom of four April Perry is always putting the needs of her children and husband and other obligations ahead of her own. She told KSL Studio 5 that it took an interesting question from her husband to wake her up.

"He said, 'I don't want you to just survive, I want you to thrive. What do you need to thrive?' " she said.

The answer to that was the "Mom's Bill of Rights" -- the things children and husbands can do to help mom. The blog got thousands of responses and reposts.

"We are hard on ourselves and need someone else to say, 'You know what? You are doing OK.' "

"Use the restroom, is number one," she wrote.

Perry said moms get to exercise.

"When kids see their moms moving, that's a great example."

Reading is good, too.

"Moms want to enrich their minds, they want to learn."

And they think.

"Mom is just going to take some time to think right now."

A study by Careerbuilder shows women do need a time out. It could be 15 minutes of daily quiet for one mom, an hour run for another. And researchers say helping mom get organized or take care of her many duties will help her find balance. But it may take training your children.

"Having your children understand that I'm not just your mom," said blogger and mom of five, Tiffany Sowby. She said any support is crucial for moms to find balance.

"Hopefully every mom can find someone, their own personal cheerleader," she said.

"We are hard on ourselves, and need someone else to say you know what? You are doing OK," she said.

Psychotherapist and parent educator Dr. Elaine Heffner said more of us used to live by grandmothers and aunts who would step in with help and advice. But now science tells mom she's not good enough. Dr. Heffner said there is no perfect mother - a good enough mother is good enough.

Finding Balance

What else can others do to help you, as the mother, find balance in life? Share your ideas on the comment board.

Others need to speak up and stand up for mom, because she won't. And once she finds purpose and balance, the whole family benefits.

"Growth follows introspection," Perry said.

"At the end of the day, when a child says my mom loves me we are doing it," Sowby added.

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