There was a time in my life when I was unstoppable. I knew exactly what I wanted to do in life:
Major in business. Check.
Get a good job before I graduate college. Check.
Get my master’s degree. Check.
Be a successful businesswoman. Check.
I truly believed in myself and my goals in life. I knew exactly what I wanted for my future and was confident in myself and the fact that I knew I’d get to where I wanted to go.
Then something changed. I had my daughter. And I no longer had that drive to be a corporate executive. I no longer wanted to work the long hours and climb the corporate ladder. I wanted to be with my sweet girl. I just didn’t know how to make it all work. I knew I was a good businesswoman. I knew how to be successful in the corporate environment. I knew how to survive with the men at my company and was racing them to the top. But I didn’t know how to just be a mom, even though that’s what I wanted more than anything. I felt like I had no direction in my life. My outlook and what was important completely changed. I decided I wanted to stay home with my daughter, but I didn’t know how. That was so foreign to me, being a stay at home mom. And so I just stopped believing that I could do…..anything.
I stopped believing in myself.
I stopped being Tiffany and started being Little A’s mom. And K’s wife. I’d lost my identity and didn’t know how to find the me I wanted to be.
I was so afraid of failing at everything that I just stopped trying. I went to work because I had to, but my heart wasn’t in it like it used to be. I did the best I could at home, but my baby was unhappy and so needy that I felt like I was failing at motherhood.
This went on for a long, long time. Until one day, I just couldn’t do it anymore. I couldn’t wallow in my self pity, wondering if life was going to go in the direction I wanted it to. I realized that if I didn’t take accountability for my life and start believing in myself then who would? And why should they if I don’t? Then and there I decided that I had to take things into my own hands. I had to start being accountable for my actions and start believing in myself again.
I stopped the pity party and started setting goals for myself, based on my dream of being home with my daughter. I laid out small goals of how I could achieve that dream and still be somewhat of a business woman.
[Tweet “I stopped the pity party and started setting goals for myself. I started to believe in myself again.”]
And I’m back to believing.
I’m running down the path I laid for myself, stopping along the way to accomplish small goals I’ve set that will get me to my end game and my ultimate goal in life: Be an amazing wife and mom. And I’ve finally learned to believe in myself again.
That doesn’t mean I’m not making mistakes as I go. I’ve made a lot. And I continue to make them. But mistakes aren’t always bad. We learn from them. Life is one big trial and error. Those mistakes we make help us learn what to do the next time and hopefully we get it right. If we don’t, we keep trying. That’s the only way to get where we want to go.
But first you need to believe. You need to believe in yourself and believe that you can. And that you will.
– Know that you are responsible for your own happiness. It doesn’t get much more straight forward than that. We are the makers of our own destiny. It took me a very, very long time to realize this and take responsibility for my own happiness.
– Set goals for yourself. In order to believe in yourself you need to set stretch goals that when accomplished, will boost your confidence and give you motivation to set more goals. I’ve started setting 30, 60 and 90 day goals. It has really helped me regain confidence in myself.
– Take on challenges. The only way you’re going to grow to believe you can is by taking on that challenge that you may not want to. Only by challenging ourselves can we start to believe in our abilities. “What comes easy won’t last. What lasts won’t come easy.” If you want your happiness to last you must challenge yourself.
– Make small changes. Small changes have a snowball effect if you stick with them. Making small changes now can lead to something great a year from now. It may seem insignificant at the time, but think of the impact that small change could have on your life 12-18 months from now. It looks pretty good doesn’t it? Just start small.
– Know that you’re going to fail, and that’s okay! Yeah it may suck at the time, but we continue to learn and grow if we make mistakes. You think the Wright brothers didn’t make mistakes when they were trying to build the first airplane? It’s learning from those mistakes that will help us grow and believe in ourselves and our abilities.
I think that unhappy people are people that don’t believe in themselves. They don’t know where they are going in their life and are just going through the motions everyday. That’s no way to live.
If you’re a non-believer I challenge you to take accountability for your happiness and start believing in yourself today. You know you can, you just have to take that first step.
Love this! I’m a firm believer in setting goals for myself and pushing myself to achieve them! And I agree with the snowball effect, start out small and work your way up!
Sequins & Sea Breezes
I loved this post!!! I could not agree more with your #1 tip!! When I feel like I’m having a “bad” day I always remind myself that I’m in charge of my mood and it’s really helped with work situations LOL! xo, Biana – BlovedBoston
Love this! I’m so happy that you’re in that place today 🙂 Little A has such a wonderful mother! By fully relying on God and believing in myself, I’ll be able to accomplish my goals. Sometimes it’s the journey that God wants us to learn from, even when we can’t see the end goal in sight.
Fantastic post! It’s always good to know that other mothers are feeling the same way! I appreciate your honesty and love you to death!
What an encouraging post! It’s so easy for us to lose who we our or put our identity in other things or people. I’m so glad you share this as I know it will encourage so many! What a good revelation to have!
Thanks so much Caroline! I feel like in the last 6 months or so my attitude is just so much better and I’m learning to really believe in myself again. It feels so good! I really do hope this encourages others!
I love this, Tiffany. Motherhood really makes us feel like we have to be 100% wherever we go, even though our heart is somewhere else. I have been struggling with this a lot. I feel like if I could just change one thing in my work/life balance, I could be better everywhere. But who’s to know if that’s really the case? I’m trying so, so hard to give myself a break and just believe in myself. Thanks for the encouragement!
Yes to all of this 🙂 I’m so sorry you went through that rough time in your life… motherhood is SUCH a hard transition, it was for me too… honestly I’m still struggling, I know that I don’t love my career anymore but luckily I only have to work very part time so it’s doable. My husband and I had a huge change in perspective when Scarlett came along, but you know what? We now dream bigger than we ever have before and we’re making small goals to accomplish those dreams 🙂
Such an encouragement. Thanks, Tiffany!
It’s so important to lay out goals and GO FOR THEM… whatever they are! 🙂
These are the things that it took me years to learn on my own so I’m doing my best to teach them to my daughter now. One of our family sayings is “Choose happiness”. You can sit around on the floor and mope that your brother got to choose the TV show or you can choose to find a way to be happy (watch the show with him, have time by yourself in your fort, etc). There will be dark times in her life, as there is in everyone’s, but if she’s in the habit of choosing happiness, perhaps the darkness will be easier to overcome and happiness easier to find.
Good for you for finding path back to yourself!
Cheers, Amber at OurCharmedLife.net
That is a great saying to have Amber. Love it! I think as women especially we struggle with this. I want my daughter to know happiness as well and always believe in herself.
Yes! Yes! Yes!
I hear you! I went through almost exactly what you described. I ticked the boxes, accomplished what I wanted, and I was able to tackle anything I put my mind to. However, you can usually conquer what you can control. I couldn’t control what type of babies I had… and then everything changed and I stopped trying at everything too.
Thank you for sharing such an honest reflection and such encouraging words.
Great post, Tiffany!!! I don’t often set goals for myself but I really should. There is no reason not to. When Palmer was first born and for the whole year after, I felt like I HAD to be “super mom” and “super wife” and “super nurse” and would be hard on myself when I failed. I think that somewhere along the way, I started believing in myself more and realizing I didn’t need to do it all; I knew it was okay to fail!!!
Love, love, love. You described so perfectly the way I felt as well when I first became a mom.I felt like for the first time, I didn’t know what exactly I was doing or what I wanted to do. I wanted to stay home but I felt so lost and felt like I never accomplished anything anymore…it was a really hard transition. I love the way you took charge and set goals. It’s true, accomplishing goals helps me believe in myself more and more. Super inspiring post, Tiffany, thank you for sharing your experience! So many moms can relate!
It’s so easy to feel defeated! Such good advice about goals. Just this week I’ve been telling my children, the way to eat an elephant is- one bite at a time! (which they said was gross, by the way) And it also helps to know Philippians 4:13. 😉 Be encouraged!
This is fabulous! We can sometimes be our own worst enemy. I love how accountability, attitude and action all coupled together can work for our own good.
Yes, girlfriend! I think a lot of us go through these same emotions when we first become a mom. I was in such a funk the first year, and I finally came out of it. But it’s still hard. The balance and coming into our own is all so hard: all change is hard. We are in a constant state of metamorphosis as moms. We try to figure out how to balance our sense of worth as a mother, a wife, a friend, and as a brand new person. It’s a constant evolution. But all of these things you listed definitely help sort out the crazy. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and advice. Love it!
You and I are pretty much twins. I struggled SO much after I stayed home with Henry. What about my Master’s?! What about the 10 years I put in that got me to a Director level with my own staff? I wouldn’t be “important” anymore!
It was a tough transition, but I’m so so glad I did it, and continue to do it. And you’re so right – we choose to be happy. Sometimes it’s something we have to fight for every minute of the day, but we choose it. Great post!
This is beautiful! Truthfully, many women struggle with this issue. I love your suggestions because these steps you identified has also helped me too.
God Bless and I am grateful you visited me.
Many Blessings to you.
Love this post! /thanks for sharing your experiences, I think so many of us moms go through very similar experience. I know I did. Your tips are great.
So encouraging! Motherhood is life-changingly wonderful…but that it can be hard to figure out what that looks like!
I think goals and small steps are a great way to head in the right direction.
Yes! I totally agree Emily! Setting goals has totally changed my outlook on things, and in turn my happiness.
Lovely post, and very encouraging. I think every mom goes through the same experiences, and it’s important to weed through all that turmoil and find yourself, and start believing again like you did. It’s tough, and it goes without challenges, but the rewards you reap will be so so worth it. Thanks so much for sharing (and for hosting Shine Blog Hop) this week!
I love this! I, too, have stopped believing in myself. I’m trying to find ME and I will be working at setting goals that have nothing to do with my chore list.
Thanks Stacey! Setting goals was so crucial for me in this process! I honestly am happier and more at ease with my life than I have been in a long time.
Absolutely FANTASTIC post…
I can’t be reminded enough right now that I really am entirely responsible for my own happiness… My own goals and achievements, or lack of them…
If there’s something I want to do I need to start doing it!
The things I know make me happy, it’s MY responsibility to make sure I’m doing them!! 😀