How to avoid empty nest syndrome?

May 19, 2021

If your children were to leave home tomorrow, what would you do?

You might celebrate.

You might commiserate.

And then what?

Would you be so connected with yourself and those around you that it wouldn’t be a problem?

Or would it feel like you were starting again? Would it feel like you were back at the beginning? Would you feel stuck? Would it be a case of having an empty nest?

It doesn’t have to feel like this. It doesn’t have to be this way. It’s your choice what happens next. Empty nest syndrome is not a given.

One thing, that is certain for me, is that there is no way I want to ‘suffer’ with empty nest syndrome. The feeling of being sad because my kids have left home. When that time comes, and it’s a long way off, I want to be celebrating them finding their independence rather than feeling like I’m being left with a massive hole in my life. After all, it’s actually about them not me.

You see, my children are the cherries on my cake. Not the cake itself. They enhance my life. They are not my whole life. And that is the way it’s meant to be.

However, many mums make their children their whole life, so it’s no surprise that when their children leave home they also leave a massive void. A void that seems too big to fill.  

If this is you, then I invite you to look at life differently. I invite you to do something now so that doesn’t happen. I invite you to see your children as the cherries on your cake.

The starting point is to focus on you and be aware of what your needs are.

Now, it’s easy to put the needs of others ahead of our own, especially when you’re a mum. You may think that this is the right thing to do. However, it isn’t.

Like with most women, when I first became a mum it was definitely all about my children. Everything I did was all for them. And that made me happy. Partly. But I soon realised that something was missing.  

I would be sat on the sofa at the end of each day exhausted with no motivation to do anything. Other than watching the television.

It wasn’t until I started to really look at my then life that I realised I wanted more. I deserved more. I was going to get more.

You see I am more than just a mummy. I am an individual and I deserve to be living the life I want with my family. So I made it happen. But where to start? Here are my 5 tips to getting you started on your journey.

Be a role model to your kids

I’m a strong believer in leading by example, which is even more important when it comes to my children. It’s all about showing them with words and actions how to live life. I see that as an important part of my role as a mum.

Put yourself first occasionally

Do you know why the air stewards tell you to put your oxygen mask on before helping others? It’s simple. If you can’t breathe then how can you help others? And that’s the same in life. If you’re not looking after yourself then who is and more importantly how can you be at your best for those you love?

Make your dreams come true

When you’re an old lady looking back on your life what do you want to see? What life do you want to have lived? Now is the time to create that life before it’s too late. Stop being an observer of life and get in the driver’s seat.

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Be present

You can’t change yesterday and tomorrow is yet to happen, so live in the now. We spend far too much time dwelling on the past. On things that we now cannot change. We also spend far too much time worrying about the future, which is out of our reach. Instead, plant yourself firmly in the now. Enjoy the moments.

Do what makes you happy

Apart from being an amazing mum, do things that actually make you, the individual, happy.

You see, where we end up is up to us. It’s built on all the choices we make during our journey. What the journey looks like is up to you. You can decide to live it from the sidelines or you can grab it with both hands and make it an adventure of a lifetime.

 Are you at the top of your list?


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