Ultimate Blog Party 2011

If you’re here for the first time from the Ultimate Blog Party, welcome!  I blog regularly about faith, family, parenting, marriage, and more!  Stay around for a little while and find all the goodies on my blog.  Don’t miss the free downloads I have, too, as well as the Hearts at Home website where you’ll find even more encouragement!

Congratulations to Sarah (Naptimemomtog.com) and Crissyanna (createdforhome.net) who won yesterday’s drawing for a My Heart’s at Home book!  Thank you to all of you who entered the drawing…but even more importantly…thank you to everyone who shared how they are intentional in their mothering.  It was a great discussion yesterday and I was so inspired!

Today’s I’m giving away 3 copies of my latest book, Living With Less So Your Family Has More.  This Hearts at Home resource looks at living with stress, less activities, and less money than is culturally acceptable.  It challenges us to look more at what we gain when we downsize in some way, rather than seeing downsizing as a loss.

Alot of the living with less discussions we’ve had here on the blog have focused on living with less financially.  Today, however, I want us to share about decisions we have made to live with less stress.

Stress weighs us down, drains our energy, weakens our health, and invites us to be cranky. Stress is a distraction from the important things in life.  It robs us of the joy of mothering.

As moms, we have to be intentional about managing the stress in our lives.  We have to begin to say no, learn the art of self-care, and be intentional about proactively managing stress rather than reacting to it.

Let’s learn from each other today.  What is one change you have made to reduce stress in your life?  Or what is one strategy you use to manage stress on a regular basis?

I’ll start the discussion…One change I’ve made is learning how to say no to good opportunities so I can give those I love my best.  It’s taken some time for me to be comfortable with saying no more often than yes, but I’ve come to realize that every “yes” I say to activities outside the home is a “no” I say to my family.   Because I don’t actually utter the word “no” to my family, I didn’t realize I was initially doing this.  But in time, I’ve come to understand the reality of this.  Now I feel far less guilt when I say no because I know I’m saying yes to what’s most important!

So what about you? What is one change you have made to reduce stress in your life?  Or what is one strategy you use to manage stress on a regular basis?

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