1. Laugh and play with your kids.
Jessica A., a married mom of two, tells Mamiverse that one day, while she was talking and texting on her phone while her kids played in a children’s fountain, she realized she was missing out on all the fun. So she put her phone away, kicked off her shoes and jumped in the fountain, to the absolute delight of her kids. “I had forgotten the importance of playing with my kids,” she writes. “They don’t just need a mom to feed, clothe and do homework with them. They need a playmate who will laugh and be silly with them too.” Plus, adds Jessica, “Our daily play time has become such a stress-reliever for me; I look forward to it as much as they do.”

2. A life beyond “Mommy”
Before you had kids, you were a lot of things other than a mom, right? Maybe you had a career, interests and hobbies that you’ve abandoned for motherhood. “We get this idea that we always have to put the kids first, but too often, we sacrifice our own needs in the process,” says Anna, a single mom to a 7-year-old boy. “Of course, the kids’ needs have to be met…but when I realized I wasn’t pursuing a single interest I’d had before becoming Mom, I knew I had to make a change.” So she resumed dance classes two nights a week, and her mom babysits. “It may seem like a small thing, but when I’m in that dance studio, I’m Anna the Dancer, not Mommy. It’s so liberating, and it lets me focus more on my son when we’re together.”