How Ya Doin, Mama? (Really?)

How Ya Doin', Mama? (really?) // // A Tool For Self-Evaluation

Hey there,

  • mom in the thick of raising your kids, or
  • mom of 3 little ones, or
  • newly postpartum mom, or
  • homeschooling mom, or
  • tired mom who has been dealing with a sick little person for far too long, or
  • mom helping your aging parent, or
  • single mom carrying the whole load yourself, or
  • nomadic missionary wife and mom, or
  • mom going through health struggles, or
  • whatever your situation is…

How are you doin?

I mean, how are you REALLY doing?

You DO realize that YOU’re a person worthy of care, right?

By using the word “care,” I suppose I should specify what kind of care I mean– because this modern world often defines that as a shopping trip where you throw caution to the wind and spend more than you can afford, or a mani/pedi, or a girls’ night out. NOT that those things don’t count, but that’s not really what I’m asking.

Self care is not a selfish activity of navel-gazing. Rather, I think self-care is an essential part of life as mom.

I’m not asking how your toes look, or if you’ve been enjoying your book club. I’m not asking if you’ve caught the latest film or splurged on the “must-have item” for this season. No- what I’m asking is:

How does your HEART look? How is your SOUL doing? How is your BODY being cared for?





  • Are you believing what God says over what your feelings are telling you?
  • Are you fierce about leaving yourself “margin”– cutting out the trimmable excess so you have extra to give when it counts?
  • Are you finding places where good enough is good enough?
  • Are you giving yourself “room” for grace at times when you are hard-pressed? (During “that” time of the month, or during the first trimester, or during chemo… or whatever… do you need to rest in the grace of your Father and not judge yourself harshly?)
  • Are you being honest in your self-expectations?

Biblical self-care as a mom is seeing yourself as one of the people God has given you to steward.

As mom, everyone depends on us. When we have life and joy and “extra,” it spreads out and everyone in our reach is blessed, strengthened, encouraged, and bolstered. When we are perpetually pushed to our limits without inward renewal, everyone in our reach is affected. In this way, when you care for you, you are not just caring for you.

When you see yourself as a person worthy of care, you can evaluate your life soberly and consider how to meet your own needs in a way that is honest and humble.

When you try to do it all without caring for you, it is actually a form of pride. When you do this, you are acting as if you can do everything that needs doing, all on your own. You are acting as if you are God. Don’t be a “mommy martyr!” It is a lie that we can “do it all”– only God can!

So, I’d like to encourage you today– take some time for self-care. Ask yourself, “How am I really doing?” 

And then, if the answer is something not-so-great, seek wisdom from the Lord, from His Word, from your husband, and from godly people close to you about how you can build the rest, refreshment, and encouragement you need, into your real life.

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Jess Connell

Jesus-follower, Happy wife, Mom of 8 neat people. Former world-traveler, now settled in Washington. Host of Mom On Purpose podcast ( I write and wrangle kids.

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2 Responses

  1. Allison says:

    Thank you for the reminder. I’ve just recently made some intentional decisions to cut back on how much I’m “doing” this fall. I took on too much over the summer and it left me perpetually exhausted and often cranky, with little time left for the Lord or for pouring into others around me. While there’s still so much going on at this stage of my life, I have been able to trim away a few things, and it is already helping. My walk with the Lord is growing, I’m enjoying the kids again, and there’s enough of me left to do things like invite a neighbor over for tea.

    In specific, one area where I’ve learned that caring for myself is important is in the area of sleep. I work night-shift once a week, and on occasion, twice (I’m a nurse, and that’s the schedule that seems to work best with the kids). After a night or two though, it takes me time to recover. When I first started working nights, I felt guilty about sleeping too long the next day because I didn’t want my husband to feel over-worked with the kids all by himself. What I found though, was that when I don’t sleep at least a good 4 or 4.5 hours after I come home, then I’m an exhausted, emotional mess the whole day! Contrary to what I once thought, I’m not super-woman, and therefore, I do need to sleep. I’ve learned that to care for my family (including my husband) well, I need to care for my physical body by allowing myself adequate sleep.

    Ah…I’d love to write more on this topic, but my toddler is dismantling a pile of bills while begging for cake…

    • Jess Connell says:

      GREAT point Allison. I’m a huge advocate for enough sleep for everyone. It’s so important. Lack of sleep can masquerade as a lot of diseases/sicknesses– it really affects our bodies in genuine, serious ways.

      Thanks for adding your thoughts.

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