Episode 16 - Are you everything to everyone?
[00:00:00] Hey, my name is Patricia Ciavarello and I am obsessed with all things motherhood and helping you keep calm in the chaos of motherhood and life's unexpected moments. I am a mom of twins with a doctorate in business who's world fell apart and had to pick myself up piece by piece. I am not an expert, but I have totally been there, and I am so far from perfect, but definitely not afraid to get real and vulnerable.
I teach you the secrets to motherhood and life I wish someone told me, because as much as we wish there was, nobody hands you a mommy manual. So pull up a seat, get comfy and get ready for me to spill my secrets. This is Real Mom Truths Nobody Tells You.
I am so grateful that you are tuned into this episode of Real Mom Truths Nobody Tells You.
Moms really do have a tendency to take on so many responsibilities and, you know, aside from their own children, you know, whether that be family or partners or spouses or relatives or friends. Right. It almost seems like this pressure to really be everything for everyone.
Right. I see it all the time. Right. It almost is like they, they take on the the worry and the anxiety and the sadness, or the problems of other people. And I want to really pick this apart because I think that there is this [00:02:00] big misconception out there that the burden is on us as women, as mothers to fix it. Right. And at the end of the day, and I'm not talking about small children, right. I'm talking about like grown adults at the end of the day, each grown person right whether that be your grown child or your friend or your relative or family member or whatnot, they're responsible for their own life.
Right. And that doesn't mean don't be there for them or don't help them, or don't give them advice or, or don't empower them or whatever the case may be. It means ultimately at the end of the day, no matter how much you as a mother, worry or are anxious are upset or sad or crying, or, you know, maybe you can't sleep and you're tossing and turning all night or you're stressed out, you know, thinking about it all day.
And you know, that doesn't fix the problem. But it deteriorates you right though that worry, that incessant worry, that anxiety, that whatever, maybe even depression, the tossing and turning all night and the, you know, the clenching of your teeth all day, because you can't stop thinking about it and can't find a solution and you've got to fix it.
That doesn't fix anything because ultimately at the end of the day, [00:04:00] they have to choose and you can't force them to choose one way or the other. Right. You can give all the advice in the world and go on and on about how this is a better option or they should do this, or they should do that. But you can't choose.
They have to ultimately choose how they want to solve their own life. Right. And that can be anything, that could be whatever is making them unhappy. That could be whatever career choice may make. That could be where they want to live. That could be, you know, how they want to live their life, what they want to do.
I mean, you can't control their decisions. But you can only control yourself and solve your own problems or your own challenges, or make yourself happy, because you can talk to someone until they're blue in the face, but if they don't want to do it, they're not going to do it. Right. And what is that going to ultimately do?
If you sit there and worry and anxiety and stress about it, it's going to deteriorate you. And you have no control over what decision they make and maybe it's letting go of that control and really surrendering and saying, you know what, I can't fix this. I can't fix this. I've tried, I've tried, I've tried and I can't fix it.
So, you know what, I just, I'm going to surrender and I'm just going to take care of me. And that doesn't mean don't help people. That doesn't mean don't give advice. It doesn't mean don't have empathy. It doesn't mean, you know, don't be there for other people or help them out, but it means you have to understand at the end of the day, there's a line that you can't cross.
You can't make the decisions. And they [00:06:00] have to ultimately sit in those decisions and live with those decisions and bear the consequences of those decisions. Right. And they have to make those decisions themselves. Each person, right is responsible for their own problems. You are not responsible for everyone's problems.
You can only be responsible for your own happiness and solving your own challenges. Everyone else, they have to be responsible to solve their own challenges and make those changes to live a happy and fulfilling life. Right. And they're going to make mistakes along the way. Right. They might choose A when the better choices is B and then they are like oh mom, you know what you told me? I should have chose A and I chose B, and now my life is horrible. What am I going to do? It's okay. Because you know what they've learned that lesson, and now they'll be able to make better choices because ultimately at the end of the day, they have to be able to make those choices because we're not here forever.
Right. And they have to be able to take control of their own life and solve their own challenges and be responsible to themselves to make the changes to live a life that makes them happy. Right. You can empower them and you can give them advice and you can listen, but ultimately it's up to them to take action and weigh the good from the bad of their decisions.
Right. And look, there's a lot of growth in that. I mean, think about your younger self, your teenage self, maybe decisions you made, probably made some pretty bad ones, right. Or maybe you were the perfect teenager. I don't know, but [00:08:00] I bet from those bad decisions. Yeah. I'm sure your parents, they didn't want to see you in those decisions.
And I'm not saying promote bad decisions. I'm just using it as an example to say, you know what? We all make mistakes and we all grow from them. I made mistake. As a teenager. I made a lot of them. I turned out okay. Right. Because I learned from them. I grew from them and I'm still learning from my mistakes and I'm still growing.
And that's what makes me evolve as a person. Right. But if I keep looking to everyone else to solve my problems, or I keep blaming everybody else for my problems, what power do I ultimately have? None. And why is it their fault that my life is in shambles? It's not, which my life is not in shambles, but I'm just using it as an example.
You know, sometimes we have to step out of that victim mentality and say, you know what? I am the driver to my life. And if I don't like how my life looks right now, then the onus is on me to change. Not everyone else. I'm not going to sit there and point the finger and say, this is all your fault. You did this to me, and now I'm going to be miserable for the rest of my life because of it. No.
Yes. Maybe things bad happened to you. I get that. I totally get that, but it is your responsibility to rise through that and to grow through them and to stretch through them. And it is not their responsibility to dig you out no matter what the case may be. You are a very powerful person and you have everything [00:10:00] it takes to overcome and create a life that you love.
And it's not at the expense of anyone else, and it's not at the responsibility of everyone else. I don't want you to burden yourself with all these responsibilities to fix everyone else's problems. And I want you to focus on you and yes, that doesn't mean don't help. Help, be a great person. Do good for others.
Be of service to others. Do it from a place of genuineness, not a place of, I have to. Right. If your neighbor is going through a tough time and they really need help and you truly genuinely want to help them, help them, help them, but don't feel responsible to, you know, take on the whole community and do everything for everyone because you know what, that's just going to burn you out.
That's just going to burn you out. And at the end of the day, we need to know when enough is enough and we need to know where we've reached our limit. And we need to know when it becomes too much so that we can be so much for others so that we can be so much for ourselves, that we can be so much for our children.
But if you know, you're like an octopus and every leg is stretched in a different direction to everyone else, there's no room for you. There's no room for anything else because you're so stretched so thin. And sometimes you have to make decisions like, okay, I'm going to do A, but not B, because that doesn't serve me.
I'm going to do C and [00:12:00] that's it. Or maybe I'm just going to do A. You don't need to be everything to everyone, and you don't need to burden yourself with the responsibilities of being everything to everyone. And I don't want you to feel guilty and I don't want you to be blamed for their challenges. And I don't want you to feel responsible for others or the need to fix it because at the end of the day, you can't fix it.
You can help, you can lend a helping hand, but ultimately it's up to them to fix it. And I think a lot of times people search externally for answers to something that is already within them. Sometimes when you're going through something and you don't know what to do and you keep searching for answers and a lot of the times, you know, people tend to look out words, right? Like they are always looking outwards for the answer. Like, maybe someone will tell me the right thing to do. Maybe I'll have a sign, you know, that's great, but I really challenge you to look within and listen to your inner knowing because a lot of times that sign is already there and you're looking, you know, out in the world for it.
And yeah. You know, maybe you do get a sign, maybe you do, but I feel like so many times people already know what they have to do. People already know the direction they're supposed to take, but they're just afraid or unwilling to do it. [00:14:00] Right. Because maybe they question themselves or they feel like they don't have what it takes or maybe they feel like an imposter or, you know, they feel like they can't do it, or they're not smart enough or good enough.
That's just simply not true. You just have to take the first step.
Everything, you can figure out everything along the way, every step, every nuance you could figure out. But if you don't take the first step, you never got there. Whatever that step is to making your life full and happy, whatever it is to quote unquote, fix your problem. Maybe it is just looking within you and saying, you know what, why am I so unhappy right now?
How did I get here? What about my life is not serving me? And when you start looking within a lot of times, the answers are already there. Maybe you're stretched too thin with responsibilities, and you feel like you're doing everything for everyone, but nothing for you. Maybe you're at a career that has burnt you out and you're exhausted and tired of it.
Maybe you've just completely ignored yourself for the sake of others and you finally reached your point where you feel like you don't have much energy left. Well, that is absolutely a time to make a 180 and say, you know what? It's time to solve my own challenge and it's time to be there for myself.
And it's time to really make changes in my life that serve me and not everybody else. And that's okay. It's okay to be a little selfish sometimes because you know what, [00:16:00] at the end of the day, if you don't take care of you, you can't do anything for anyone. And ultimately, that's not the reason you should be taking care of you.
You should be taking care of you because you love yourself and you are worthy of all the love. But on the flip side, if you don't take care of you, you can't take care of your family. You can't take care of all of these other people you feel responsible for. Right. And there are people that love you.
If they truly care, they will love you regardless of what you do for them right? If you, all of a sudden say to say that neighbor that you've been driving, I don't know, three miles out of the way to work, and say look, I really can't, you know, drive you to work anymore. I'm really sorry. I have some things I have to do in the morning before I go to work and, you know, whatever that maybe.
And they all of a sudden stopped talking to you let's just say. Is that really a friend or is that someone that is just is a friend because of what you're giving them? It's not a friend and maybe that's a boundary that you have to establish and say, Hey, you know what? Well, if someone is going to treat me like this, because I don't do something for them, then there's a boundary.
I'm not doing this anymore.. I'm really sorry, I can't do it anymore. That's it? No explanations, no guilt. And if they love you truly love you. They'll say, oh, you know what? That's okay. I really understand. But you've helped me for so long and I really appreciate it. And if you can help me again, that's great. But you know what? I really appreciate everything you did. That's a friend. That's a friend, not someone who's give me, give me again. Take take take, right. And you know what, maybe you don't have a circle like that. [00:18:00] Maybe everyone is takers in your life. Well then maybe it's time to draw a circle around yourself and say, you know what?
You can not penetrate this circle because now it's time for me to take care of me. And if you love me and you love everything that I've done for you, then maybe you'll take care of me. And be a good friend to me or a good family member to me, or a good spouse to me. Right. But at the end of the day, the responsibility is on us to take care of ourselves because you can't be everything to everyone and you can only be everything to yourself.
So I want you to honor that and cherish that and love that and do for you, what you would do for everyone else to make your life full and whole and happy. That is your number one responsibility.
As always, I promise to be here for you and serve you and cheer you on every step of the way and spill all the secrets of motherhood and life I wish someone told me. Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Real Mom Truths Nobody Tells You podcast. Until next time, keep on celebrating you, because you, my friend, you are so worth it.
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