Take the quiz and read more about all four stepmom mantras.
Discover all the 4 mantras below:
I am loved, appreciated and my contributions matter.
But sometimes you don’t even get a simple ‘thank you’. Quite the opposite, you may get smirk remarks that leave you feeling taken for granted. You may be doing all the “motherly” things, without much credit at all.
It’s important to know that your contributions matter and are vital for the well-being of your whole family. Although your partner and stepkids may forget to tell you that you’re appreciated, you can learn to give yourself the appreciation you deserve.
Careful - that doesn’t mean that you settle for less or allow others to take advantage of you. On the contrary, it’s about loving and appreciating yourself enough to know your boundaries and stick to them.
It’s important to know that your efforts to be a good stepmom matter. But no matter how much praise and thanks you get from the outside, it will never be enough to fill an inner lack of self-love and appreciation. Until you can learn to love yourself first, you won’t be able to fully receive the love that is around you.
So the good news is that if you start truly and deeply believing and living this mantra, you can experience some big positive shifts in your life - I am loved, appreciated and my contributions matter.
Action step: What are 3 things that you appreciate about yourself in your stepmom role? When you start to feel self-appreciation, your mood will start to shift to a more positive and happier vibe. Try this practice of self-appreciation for at least a week, and notice how things begin to shift.
Want to learn more? Check out this blog on feeling taken for granted, and discover the two questions you can ask yourself to help bring you out of that ‘taken for granted’ feeling.
I am enough, and it’s safe to be me. I can be open, honest, vulnerable and take my rightful place in my blended family.
By valuing yourself, I don’t only mean acknowledging how great you are (because you are ;) ). I mean getting in tune with your deep desires and needs, and making sure those are met.
You may be disconnected from your own needs and desires, if:
- you have a hard time voicing your opinions and preferences (or identifying what they are)
- you go with the flow all the time and rarely have needs of your own
- you tend to put everyone else first, constantly.
It’s vital to know that you are an important member of your blended family. Along those lines, your well-being and personal fulfilment are central parts of the functioning of your blended family. So make yourself a top priority in your life. If you are happy and fulfilled, you radiate a positive vibe that is an attractive force to those around you.
Action step: What are 3 things that make you truly happy that you can do this week? It could be dancing, listening to a certain genre of music, art, reading, writing, sports, going to the spa, whatever you enjoy.
Tune into those desires, and ask yourself on a daily basis what it is you need. This practice will start to reconnect you with those deep desires and will leave you feeling fulfilled in your life. Try this practice of fulfilling your desires for at least a week, and notice how things begin to shift.
Want more? Check out these blogs related to feeling important:
-Why My Stepkids Don’t Come First in Our Family – And why everyone is better off that way
-Oh How I Judged the Biomom – Then I became a full-time stepmom
-Sharing our Kids (And Their Stuff) Between Two Households – Learn to value what you value, and teach your kids to do the same
I am enough, and it’s safe to be me. I can be open, honest and vulnerable and take my rightful place in my blended family.
You may think that you need to be someone else – be more ‘motherly’, be more ‘crafty’, be less vulgar, more open, less open… the possibilities for self-criticism are endless.
It’s so important to know that you are enough, just as you are.
You can learn to open-up and be yourself around your stepkids in a way that is safe and feels natural. You can take your rightful place as their dad’s partner, and be unapologetic about your presence in his life. You don’t need to walk on eggshells, feel like an outsider, or hide your true self.
This starts with accepting yourself just as you are, and knowing that you are enough.
When you accept yourself, it doesn’t matter if other people don’t at first.
Your self-acceptance is the only real thing that matters. If you can be comfortable with who you are in the presence of your stepkids, you can be a role model of a self-actualized woman in their life. They may not recognize or appreciate it at first, but believe me – the long-term rewards of having this type of role model are invaluable, especially if you’re the only one modeling this behavior in their lives.
So it’s a win-win – you feel like you can be yourself, and your stepkids can learn to be their own person one day.
Action step: What are 3 unique qualities, attitudes or hobbies that you possess that are important to you? How can you honor those things on a regular basis, and allow them to be present in your life?
Wanna read more? Check out these blogs on being yourself and doing things your unique way as a stepmom:
- Stepmom Over-Stepping? Mastering the Stepmom Two-Step
- When Family Mealtime Leaves you Feeling Defeated and Alone - Dealing with picky-eaters, different tastes, and comparisons to biomom's cooking
I am supported and it’s safe to let go. I trust in the flow of life and my place in the world.
Maybe you believe that if everyone just did things your way, everything would run much more smoothly – and perhaps it would.
It’s a fine balancing act to manage it all – but you’ve got things under control.
Sometimes though, you may overstep and people may get upset with you for being overbearing or too controlling. You may feel a big burden on your shoulders to manage it all – because without you it will all fall apart.
Helping out is a great quality – when it’s asked for and desired. And it may be (at first).
But if your help is unsolicited, or you’re starting to feel resentful about it, it may be time to let go a little bit. If you’re at your breaking point, it may even be time to detach with love.
- What would it be like if you could let go of control and trust that life will fall into place?
- What if you could drop the fear that it will all fall apart if you don’t step in to fix the problem?
- What if you believed that everyone and everything would be okay without your help?
- What if the burden of controlling the situation was off your shoulders, and you were only responsible for your own thoughts, feelings, beliefs and actions? How would that feel?
The truth is, your greatest power is the power to change yourself. Other people’s thoughts, feelings, beliefs and actions (or lack of action) are not yours to control. You can try, and you may succeed in the short term, but long-lasting change needs to come from the individual’s willingness to change, it can’t be forced or persuaded.
When you can accept this fact and learn to let go (at least a little bit), life becomes effortless. You can relax, knowing that you are safe and carried. That doesn’t mean that you sit back and do nothing. It means that you act strategically and intelligently, knowing your limits and respecting other people’s boundaries and autonomy to make their own decisions.
Action step: Identify one little thing that is out of your control and causing you stress. Now let that one little thing go. Hint* it’s related to controlling other people’s actions, emotions, beliefs and feelings. It’s important to start with something small and manageable and feel the release of letting it go.
For example, if you’re constantly reminding your partner to teach his kids table manners, let that go for a day. You can other people deal with the consequences of their actions, and don’t need to be a caretaker all the time – especially if it’s causing you to feel burdened and resentful. That doesn’t mean you abandon your family and live “to each their own”. It’s about letting go with love and giving others the space they need to develop and grow. They may make mistakes along the way – and that’s okay. We are all on our life journey, we all make mistakes and grow as a result.
Wanna learn more? Check out these blogs on controlling what you can and leaving the rest:
- How To Get Your Husband And The Biomom To Do What You Want
- Detachment and Disengaging - What’s love got to do with it?
- Detachment and Disengaging Part 2: When should you detach and what if you can’t?