What if you are the best mom there is for your kids, what if I’m the best for mine?

What if we really believed that?

I remember when our first son was just a baby, I was talking to a seasoned mom of three. I was strung out on new mom anxiety and was stressing about everything from nursing schedules to mysterious skin rashes.

She looked at me kindly, “Ya know, it seems like you’re really worried about doing things the ‘right way’, but parenting isn’t that complicated. You don’t need to read every book there is, trust your gut, love them, you aren’t going to mess this up.”


I was already a perfectionist, but I’ve never wanted to be perfect more than when my baby boy was first placed in my arms. I like to imagine that if I were still single I’d be a saint. I’d be so calm and patient and kind.

Instead, I’m the frazzled mom who just yelled obscenities at the kiddie park when she got nailed in the ankle by her son’s skateboard.

That is who I am now.

Of course, I wouldn’t change a thing, not ever, but nothing has ever made me more painfully aware of my flaws than being a mother.

I am often fixated on what I am not. I am not organized. I am not good at playing make-believe. I’m a lot more impatient than I’d like to be. I am not good at brushing my girls’ hair every day (hence the rat’s nest that will now need a pickaxe to come untangled).

But the thing is: no one is good at everything.

I am good at having deep conversations with them. I am good at getting them outside to hike and play. I’m good at saying sorry. I’m good at going after my dreams (and hopefully inspiring them to do the same).

What if instead of being hard on ourselves for what we are not, we focused on developing the best of the things we already are?

Whether you’re a working mom, stay-at-home-mom, homeschooling mom, kombucha making, wine drinking, running, yoga-ing, pizza eating, emotional, not-very-emotional, free-spirit, by-the-book…whatever it is you are…WHAT IF that’s exactly what they need?

I love personality tests. It fascinates me how different we all are from each other. Why is it that when it comes to motherhood we’re all supposed to fit in a cookie cutter shape?

It isn’t possible.

We should be the moms that WE are. We get to define it, it doesn’t define us.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t keep learning and growing and asking for advice, but I am saying WE’VE GOT THIS. We are strong enough, we are wise enough, we are enough. Enough.

I think I’m starting to understand what my friend was talking about: the strengths we bring to the table are exactly what is needed for our kids to become the adults they’re meant to be.

So let’s love them and trust our guts…

We’ve got this.

Originally posted on Wonderoak.

Raising a mentally strong kid doesn't mean he won't cry when he's sad or that he won't fail sometimes. Mental strength won't make your child immune to hardship—but it also won't cause him to suppress his emotions.

In fact, it's quite the opposite. Mental strength is what helps kids bounce back from setbacks. It gives them the strength to keep going, even when they're plagued with self-doubt. A strong mental muscle is the key to helping kids reach their greatest potential in life.

But raising a mentally strong kid requires parents to avoid the common yet unhealthy parenting practices that rob kids of mental strength. In my book, 13 Things Mentally Strong Parents Don't Do, I identify 13 things to avoid if you want to raise a mentally strong kid equipped to tackle life's toughest challenges:

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