What is Mom Burnout? (Signs/Symptoms, Treatment)

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Mom burnout is a very real thing. I’ve been there and if you haven’t yet, you will be.

The good news is that it’s temporary and there are ways to get past it. Don’t feel bad that you’re suffering from burnout.

Just accept it and work to get through it.

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What is Mom Burnout?

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This chart goes over 5 ways that might help you deal with burnout as a mom.

Mom burnout is the physical and emotional fatigue felt with being a mom. This is typically due to the constant, chronic stress of moms have to deal with. Some of the ways to battle mom burnout include taking some time off, meditating, sleeping, exercising and seeking therapy.

Battling with Mom Burnout

I have suffered from mom burnout on-and-off since my first child was born 16 years ago. It primarily happens when a lot of stress builds up over time.

It’s most common when children are young and very needy, but it can happen at any moment.

When it does, acknowledge it and allow yourself to understand that you are overstretched and overstressed. It won’t get better until you get help.

Symptoms of Mom Burnout

The physical symptoms of mom burnout might be tension headaches, insomnia, tightness in the chest and constipation.

Emotional signs of mom burnout are increased anxiety, depression and anger. You may experience a combination of or all of these things.

Ways to Battle Mom Burnout

Moms have been battling burnout for ages. The Rolling Stones even wrote a song about it. Before you reach for a pill, look for some other options.

1. Take Time Off

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If it is possible, take some time to yourself, away from the house and the family. Depending on your situation, you might be able to take a few hours or a few days.

Whatever amount of time you can manage, take it.

Get a friend to watch the kids. Have your partner be sole-caregiver for the evening. Tell your own mom that you are suffering from burnout. Trust, me she will understand.

2. Meditate

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I am a huge believer in meditation. I meditate daily to try to keep my mind healthy and serene. Look for a quiet space, if you can find one, and sit very still.

You can close your eyes or find a focal point. Focus your mind on inner calm while taking in deep, cleansing breaths. Take time to do this each morning when you wake up or just before you go to bed.

3. Get More Sleep

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Are you laughing? Telling a mom to get more sleep is like telling the Sun to chill. Still, lack of sleep is often the primary culprit in mom burnout.

In order to take care of your children, you have to take care of yourself first. That means getting restful sleep at night. If you can’t sleep, you can try changing up some of your habits to give yourself a better chance at rest.

Limit your own screen time at night. Get more exercise during the day. Avoid caffeine after dinner. Change your pillow.

If you still can’t get the sleep you need, just resting or reading a good book might be enough to calm your mind.

4. Exercise

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Exercise really does heal your mind and your body. Exercise releases endorphins. which naturally combats stress. You also have the added bonus of being away from your kids for a good reason.

When my children were very young I went to a gym that had in-house daycare.

It was the perfect time for me to have a get away while also exercising and knowing that they were having fun in their own environment. It was a true win-win.

5. Consider Therapy

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There is nothing wrong with admitting you need help and seeking it out. Sometimes therapy is good and sometimes it is great.

Therapy can help you understand where your mom burnout is coming from and give you the tools to combat it. If you don’t have the time or the money for therapy, there are non-medical therapists that can help you.

For instance, a spiritual leader is willing to listen whenever you need help. You also have your friends. Mom friends know what burnout is like and they can let you unload on them just as they know they can count on you.

While it might not be completely conventional, your spouse can act as a therapist as well.

My husband regularly tells me that he “needs some therapy,” which is our code for “I need someone to listen to me talk because I’m feeling a lot of things right now and I know you love me unconditionally.”

Key Takeaways

Have you ever suffered from mom burnout? What are some things you have felt? Have any of these strategies worked for you? Other mothers can benefit from your personal experience. Tell us your stories in the comments!

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