3 Ways to Stop Being a Hypocrite

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Hi, I’m Jessie and I’m a hypocrite. Mainly when it comes to my kid. Ever since my child entered the world of toddlerhood, I made sure to set schedules and routines that would mold her into the well-adjusted adult I hope for her to be. And yet, I can never enforce the same rules for myself. 

You know the saying, “Do as I say not as I do”? Yeah…I don’t like it either. Except when it comes to her catching me doing something I shouldn’t be doing. Look, all I need is for my toddler, who holds no concept of logic, to do things I think will better her in the long run. Control your screen time! Eat your veggies! Clean your room! Is that too much to ask for? 

I don’t care how steadfast you are on your healthy eating and mindful self-care, all moms are 100% guilty of doing the things we tell our kids not to, and that’s ok! Let’s be human for a change. Let’s stop obsessing over the perfectly presented moms. So much of mom guilt is derived from us not meeting the expectations we put on ourselves. Maybe it’s time to stop putting these crazy high expectations on our kids. 

Before you start any form of a routine or rules, start meeting your kid in the middle. High expectations for both of you will only send you down the pipeline of failure.

1. Screen time

You make a point to limit screen-time in your home? Awesome. Just ensure it applies to you as well. Of course, special exceptions come with work and education. I know, I get the dopamine hit every time I pick up my phone. So make a realistic goal for you and your kid.

My three-year-old got a tablet for her birthday and that’s when the actual concept of screen-time kicked in. So I made TV blocks (some parents call them TV circles)! I decided not to let her choose when she uses hers for now, because it’s so easy to lose track of time. She gets one in the morning, one prior to lunch, and one post-nap. She can choose which device and we go from there. And guess what? The blocks apply to me as well. I don’t count every time I glance at my phone either. I just become mindful of the time I’m spending staring at a screen. 

2. Sneaking treats

Got caught with a cookie in your hand just after scolding your kid to finish his broccoli? Next time, do you hide in your closet to eat the said cookie and hope it doesn’t happen again? Look, healthy eating can be a challenge for all of us. So stop beating yourself down about it while making that requirement for your kids. Just be realistic.
Model the habit you want your kid to make. “Look, Mommy had her veggies and now she’ll have a treat.” Your kid might still whine about it after, but you are setting that realistic example that you are no exception. 

3. Keeping a tidy room

I think keeping a clean room can be the hardest thing to stay on top of. I figured out why. I want my toddler to pick up every single toy and make it spotless. I, however, will clean my room to an acceptable standard that involves multiple things still not put away. So I stopped being stingy about toy clean-up. I reduced the number of toys that are available for her to get into so there was less to clean up. I stopped worrying about how organized everything was and I made it easy to clean up. Labeling containers for where items go and having an easily-accessed designated space makes things so much easier. Model the habit of tidying up, but don’t stress the perfection of it. 

If you can’t see yourself following the same rules as your child, then it’s time to embrace the grace. Give it to them and yourself. Your kid sees you being a human. Always striving to be better is more beneficial than your child seeing a hypocrite. 

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Hi! I’m Jessie! Born and raised in Central Oklahoma, I am currently enjoying suburban life with my toddler, husband, and a sweet little terrier. I love diving into anything nerdy from engaging in a fantasy novel to playing a tabletop game with friends. I love to make people laugh. Catch me watching a football game, making cookies, or painting dinosaurs with my daughter. My struggles once defined me, but now they help mold me. I want to lift fellow mothers who silently suffer in the shadows. Chronic illness and pain are invisible, but very real. Our battles are tough, but our resolve is strong. You’ll never see me hide my tears, and neither should you.

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