Creating Your Life

Talk to Your Mommy Guilt

Mommy guilt and shame is the result of your brain and it’s purpose – to keep you and your offspring alive, not happy. Anything you try to do that is new, different, interesting or courageous will result in fear, and for many moms, mommy guilt.

Fear, self-doubt and mommy guilt is just your ancient brain trying to stop you from doing things that are important for living your creative life.

I like the way that Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love talks about dealing with her fear.

“That’s why if you try to sit down and write a poem, it literally feels like you’re going to die,” Gilbert said. “Your fear only has one job and that is: No, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t, death, murder, mayhem, back it up, shut down, stay on the couch, be safe, don’t die. And so the relationship that I’ve established over the years is just a very loving conversation with that—a very maternal way that I speak to that, because I know that it’s just not that smart. I just talk to it like it’s my dumb cousin who played hockey and just isn’t that bright, and I’m like, ‘I know. I know it’s scary, but you know what? Mommy’s got this.’

“As soon as I say, ‘It’s okay for you to be here, and you can stay with me and we’re going to do this together,’ it just relaxes and it goes to sleep like a toddler in a car-seat,” she said.

In the same way that many people have learned that to deal with fear and self-doubt, you have to accept that it never goes away, we can accept that mommy guilt may constantly reappear, and that’s ok.

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