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How to Beat the Housewife Blues: Don't Lose Your Mind or Your Marriage...
Well, it’s Monday again and time for us to wake up and follow the same routine that we follow week in and week out. For some, being a housewife has become unfulfilling and tiresome. We often find ourselves stressed and depressed for reasons that are unknown. Do not feel ashamed because you are not alone. Rather you choose to call it housewife or stay-at-home mom the terms are both self explanatory; you're home almost all the time. The times when you are not at home, you are generally doing something in support of or for the betterment of your family. This can cause women to feel as if their life has no meaning or that they have not accomplished anything with their lives. This assumption could not be farther from the truth.
There is no handbook out there that says you have to work outside of your home to have a sense of accomplishment or pride. Even if they may not tell you so, most of the working women today would kill to be in your shoes. (Well, maybe not if they realized you didn't have it so easy after all.) But the point is, a lot of women work out of necessity for a job. Some do work for self-fulfillment, but that is their personal decision on what is fulfilling for them. You don't have to click the internet ads telling moms to go back to school and earn a degree to impress anyone. Believe me; your family is impressed with you just the way you are even if you don't realize it. My mother was and still is a homemaker, and even though we weren't the richest people on the block, you can't imagine how great it was to come home to a hot meal every day. It felt good that mom did my laundry growing up and other things around the house that taught my sisters and I how to be women. She could've chosen to do anything with her life, but she made the bold choice of raising her children, and that, my sisters, is the most important career you can ever take on. You literally have someone else’s lives in your hand, and the things you do everyday shape the person they will ultimately become. Do not take yourself for granted even though it may seem as though others do. With that being said, let's move on to ways to getting over the slump we sometimes fall into.
First, most housewives have schedules that we follow. If you're like me and you have small children, or if you have older children who are involved in extracurricular activities then a schedule is necessary. However, that very schedule is what can make you feel like you've gotten into a rut. Once every two weeks or so, throw a wrench in your plans and do something completely out of the ordinary. You know that menu that you plan every week, pick one day to leave a question mark on and then take the family out to the restaurant of your choice for that evening, or let the children make something they want for dinner (even if it’s ridiculous). As I have mentioned in some of my other hubs, make sure to schedule some time for you to do what you like. It could be going to the salon or shopping, or just relaxing and watching your favorite movie at home. Just make sure that the children are not around or this won’t be YOUR time.
Now, since us housewives are the queens of finance and management, why not put those skills to good use? You don’t always have to have a traditional job to earn money. There are several work from home opportunities available but be careful not to get yourself scammed into something that will bankrupt your family. Before you pick a work from home opportunity make sure it’s something you really would like doing, because if it’s not then chances are you won’t succeed in that business. The most common opportunities such as Avon and Mary Kay are pretty much a waste of time because there are so many other people already doing it. Try selling something that it is in demand but not so readily available. For example, try selling handbags, jewelry or home décor, things that other women are into. Focus on items that your friends and family will be interested in purchasing and make sure to network. Even though you’re still at home, you have a new purpose for being there. And most importantly, take your job seriously; don’t treat it like a hobby or it won’t work for making any income or relieving any stress.
If you’re set on going to college, make sure it’s something you are really willing to commit to and that you plan on working after you finish. College is a huge investment and don’t forget you have some children coming along who are going to need you to be able to invest in their education as well. Also, remember there are some degrees that allow you to work from home once completed. Take the time out to research different schools and degree programs before you apply and sign up for something. Make sure that the school you choose to attend is an accredited university and not just some online school handing out diplomas to anyone who signs up. If you are choosing the online route, the best thing to do is find a traditional university that offers online degree programs in addition to their traditional degrees. The degree will have more weight after you graduate. Don’t get sucked into the student loan system by accepting money that you don’t need. You WILL have to pay it back whether you earn a degree or not.
If you do have a hobby, then set some time aside to do it. If you’re a reader then look for a local book club to join, or start one yourself! If you’re a musician or artist, set some time aside to hone your craft or volunteer to teach others at the local community center. If you’re an excellent cook then by all means host a dinner party! It doesn’t have to be like Bree Olsen’s get-togethers over on Wysteria Lane, but it can be something simple and nice for you and your closest friends. Or you can save yourself some time and money by just making it a brunch. If you’re an athlete, start an exercising club with your friends. You and a few others can get together for walks, jogs or go to the gym. Also, you could use your skills to coach local sports teams at the YMCA/YWCA or Boys and Girls Clubs. You smart moms can always tutor (and you might even be able to make some cash doing that).
One important thing is to make sure that you have people that you can communicate with other than your family. There are several ways to meet new people and make friends. If you’re an Army wife like me, then go to the FRG meetings and meet some of the other wives. You already share a common bond with women who share your same experiences in life. Most companies have functions such as picnics or other gatherings where you can meet people. Churches and other social organizations are great ways to meet people who share your interest and goals in life. The last thing you want to do is start hanging out with women who are on a different path in life than you are. This is the number one way to start a rift in your marriage. It is important to have your own social life, but don’t make your family feel as though they come second to it. If you were in a sorority in college then look into becoming affiliated with the graduate chapters of that group. There are several things out there to get involved in you just have to research your community to find out.
In conclusion, don’t let the homebody blues get you so down that your attitude starts to affect those around you. If your family wasn’t the most important thing to you then you wouldn’t do what you do every day. Depression is a serious illness and you don’t want to get in too deep to pull yourself out. If you feel that you are in a bad emotional state and it is affecting your everyday life please seek professional counseling. Self-fulfillment comes in many forms so find your thing and do you! And remember, HOUSEWIVE’S rule, if we didn’t then why would they keep making so many television shows about us?