4 Ways to Show Yourself Grace

mom mistakes

I was homeschooling our kids and it was one of those days. I had a pounding headache and all I wanted to do was lay down. So I did and it felt good. However, by the end of the day, my kids had had limited to no schooling. That’s when guilt and shame came flooding in.

No matter how hard we try, there will be failure and moments where we don’t meet our own expectations as moms. The key to learning from our mom mistakes, and moving past, those tough days as a mom is to recognize where you fell short, make it right the best you can, and try again tomorrow. Here are 4 ways to do that.

1. Take your own advice.

You’ve undoubtedly had to walk each of your children through the process of owning a failure and learning from it. You probably told them something like: admit what you did was wrong, say you’re sorry and don’t do it again. So simple a child could understand it, right? Then do it, mom. We promise you’ll feel better.

2. Understand the difference between fiction and reality. 

You’ll never be happy with yourself as a mom if you set the bar unreasonably high based on the avalanche of parenting advice and news we hear. Most of these tips are designed to give you an ideal picture to aim for, knowing that you’ll never accomplish the goal completely. For instance, you want your child to be the best student he can be, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be the class valedictorian. So don’t count it a failure when he’s just a good, average student. Spend more time celebrating what has been accomplished and less time lamenting your/his failure to reach the ideal. The same principle can be applied to your own efforts in home management, family nutrition, etc. Use your energy to move in the right direction every day, rather than looking for a finish line.

3. Don’t believe the hype.

We all have those moms in our midst who come to every class party dressed like a model and bearing a tray of hand-decorated cookies. She makes us feel bad, doesn’t she? But remember, all you see is what she wants you to see. If you had access to her whole life, you’d likely see several areas where you’re more efficient or a flat-out better mom. The point here is not to compare, but to realize that we all have different gifts.

4. Accept forgiveness.

That same forgiveness you give to your child when she does wrong is available to you, too, from a gracious and loving Heavenly Father. When you’ve confessed and apologized, trust Him enough to just accept the forgiveness He offers. Then use it as inspiration to live a life that’s pleasing to Him going forward.

Tell us! What is the hardest part about letting your failures go?