How To Stay Motivated As An Exhausted, Busy Mom

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Haven’t we all been there where there are days where we just physically and mentally can’t? Those days where easy tasks like getting ready in the morning just feels impossible. We all have days that lack motivation. It’s completely human to feel that way.ย 

Motivation has always been a struggle for me. I have never been a super organized and type A person. I’m a huge procrastinator therefore I tend to let things build up leaving me overwhelmed. Then I became a mom and well my issue before became an even bigger issue.

Being a mom is the best thing ever but let’s be honest for a second. It can be HARD work. Whether your a new mom taking care of a newborn or a seasoned mom juggling three kids. Mom exhaustion is no joke. And when you are exhausted all the time, how do you find the energy to stay motivated?ย 

Taking care of my now sixteen month old, starting a new blog, and being pregnant with baby number two has left me feeling just as exhausted as the newborn days. I have been struggling with my motivation for a while now. Some days are better than others. But because of my struggle, I have been forced to figure out ways to stay motivated despite how mentally and physically exhausted I am.ย 

So mamas if you’re right there with me, then I have some good news for you. It is possible to stay motivated even when you feel like you have zero energy to get out of bed and do it all over. You can do it. I promise. There are some amazing tips I have learned that can keep your motivation going. I hope these tips give you the push you need to stay motivated to do whatever it is that you need and want to do.ย 

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9 Tips For Staying Motivated Despite Mom Exhaustion

Find Your Purpose For Staying Motivated:

There are things in life that we have to do and not necessarily want to do. But the reasons as to why we do them is what motivates us. Whether you need motivation to stay on top of housework (I, right?) or motivation to work from home–finding your purpose or remembering your “why” is essential to remaining motivated.

For me, I feel great when I can take care of my son and get all the laundry and dishes done. When I lose motivation, I remember how great I will feel if I just do that one load of laundry.

Since I began my blog, there are days where I just don’t have any motivation at all to write a post. It’s been a long day with a teething, sick baby and my energy is depleted. But then I remember WHY I started my blog. My why is to help other struggling mamas out with my experiences and tips I’ve learned so far. When I focus on my why, it gives me that motivation I need to start again.

When I have days where I feel like I am too exhausted to “mom” today, I remember my why. The why is my son. He is the reason I keep going and keep pushing. As cheesy as it sounds, he is my motivation for most everything.

Understanding your why and remembering your purpose will help you find that motivation. And, hopefully give you that push you need.

Figure Out What Makes You Feel Motivated:

When people are under stress, we want to naturally find things that alleviate stress. Or when we are sad, we want to do things that make us happy. Well it is the same for lack of motivation. We want to do things that make us feel motivated.

For me, I get motivated by listening to uplifting music. Music motivates me to clean, work out, and all around just puts me in that productive mind set.

I also get motivated by a big cup of coffee in the morning. It starts my morning out right. And if you need just a little extra motivation then I would recommend a motivational coffee mug. I love coffee mugs with encouraging words. It could just be me but I swear it makes the coffee taste better.

Figuring out what gives you that extra boost of motivation when it doesn’t come naturally will definitely help keep you motivated.

Create A Schedule/Routine:

I used to be a go with the flow kind of gal until I became a mom. When I became a mom, I quickly realized how important creating a schedule and routine is for both my son and I. Babies thrive off routines especially for naps. And when nap time is consistent, you can have a plan for how to utilize that alone time you get from baby especially if you work from home.

It’s trial and error to figure out what routine or schedule works best for you depending on your day to day. But once you find one, stick with it! I have a morning routine, nap routine and meal routine for my son. It makes all the difference.

Your days can become quickly chaotic without a schedule in place and the disorganization can be very overwhelming. And when you are overwhelmed, all motivation is lost. At least for me, when I feel too overwhelmed then I completely shut down and end up not accomplishing anything.

When you have a schedule in place, you know what to expect day to day. It also allows you to find pockets of time throughout your day for extra things you want to accomplish. Of course, having a baby can make your day to day unpredictable but having that schedule in place can make it easier to adjust. I have found that sticking to a schedule and routine eliminates a lot of my stress which in return allows me to be more motivated and productive.

Make A Daily To Do List That IS Realistic:

It’s amazing what writing your to do list on paper can do for the soul. I don’t know about you but I can get easily overwhelmed with all the things to do jumbling around in my head. When I write it down and get it out of my head onto paper, it gives me that deep breath I need.

However, it’s important to keep in mind to keep your to do list realistic and manageable. You can’t do it all. I am guilty of writing everything down that I want to accomplish and then losing motivation when I only cross off like two things from my list of ten things to do.

What I find helps with my motivation is keeping my to do list to a minimal of two to three things to do during a day. It is a more realistic goal to get two or three things done than it is ten. It’s less overwhelming. I’d rather stare at a small list of things to do than a large one.

If you end up having a crazy day because baby throws a curve ball and you only accomplish one thing then move the next “to do” to the next day. And who knows, maybe by the end of the week, all yourย  “to do’s” will be done.

Below is a great daily planner to use. I love it because it has only three “Must Do’s” for the day which will hold you accountable to not writing a huge list. And it gives you a section for a schedule if you have a schedule that changes from day to day. It also has a section to write down what you are grateful for which is so important to stay mindful of when you have an extra busy day!

Prioritize Your Goals By Short Term And Long Term Based Off Importance:

I love writing goal lists as much as I love writing daily to do lists. It keeps me motivated to write down all my goals whether it’d be daily, weekly, or monthly.

To keep motivation going, I don’t just simply write down my goals that I want to accomplish. I prioritize my goals by short term and long term based off importance.

This allows me to focus on goals that I want to accomplish soon while keeping in mind the goals that I eventually want to accomplish down the line.

I also prioritize my goals based off importance. Things I have to get done are my weekly goals and things that aren’t necessarily on a time crunch are my monthly goals. My long term goals are usually my goals I want to accomplish for the year.

This is where having a planner comes in handy. I am very much a paper planner person as I mentioned before I love putting everything on paper. I use the Erin Condren Planner and I LOVE it. You can also buy a sticker book for the planner with inspiring quotes for that extra motivation.

Practice Self Care

Knowing when to take a break is important for recharging your batteries and finding that motivation again. I know very well that you can think of a million things that need to get done. It’s easy to put ourselves on the back burner until they are accomplished. But there will always be things to do. If we have that mindset then we will never ever make time for ourselves.

Practicing self care is so important. If you continue running on empty, then it will lead to exhaustion and depression. These negative emotions will wreck your motivation and desire to accomplish things every time.

Self care doesn’t have to be an hour event.

It can be as simple as waking up before baby gets up and treating yourself to a cup of coffee while reading a book. It can mean settling down for the night after baby is put to sleep and having a glass of wine. It’s simple things that do not take much time that can recharge your soul and mind. Take a few minutes each day for yourself to keep you motivated and reaching for your goals whatever they may be.

Only Love Today: Reminders to Breathe More, Stress Less, and Choose Love
is a great book that I read when I start to feel overwhelmed. It always gets me centered and helps me find my motivation.

Celebrate The Small Wins

“Find the good in every day.”

This is a quote that I have been living by lately. It has made all the difference for my mindset and motivation. We all have days that go unplanned. Days that completely wreck our moods. Days that are just plain hard. Days that make us feel not good enough. It’s really hard to stay motivated when our attitude and moods are negative.

We may not be able to control what happens during our days, but we have all the control of how we perceive it. Be intentional and look for something positive within your day. Doing this will shift your attitude to a more positive one allowing that motivation back in.

There are days especially as a new mother where NOTHING gets done. It gets to the end of the day and you wonder what did I even do today. Well mama, you rocked it at taking care of your baby. You held and gave your baby comfort because they need you. It may not feel like a whole lot but it is everything. Celebrate the smalls wins and that will lead you to bigger ones.

Give Yourself Grace

Don’t be hard on yourself if you aren’t where you want to be, or the day didn’t go as expected, or you didn’t accomplish anything you wanted to accomplish. You can’t stay motivated if you are frustrated with yourself. Tell yourself it’s okay and move on. We all deserve a pass every once in awhile.

Forgive yourself, move on, and keep going. We can get in the way of ourselves a lot of the time and are often our toughest critic. We are quick to extend grace to others in our lives, so why can’t we do the same for ourselves?

Be Flexible

I have touched on this a little bit already but it’s a great tip that deserves it’s own section. As a mom, we know that there are easy and more challenging days taking care ofย  a baby. Baby’s go through so many changes throughout their first year of life that most days are unpredictable. We don’t know when a nursing strike will happen, when a tooth will be popping through, or when baby will go through a sleep regression.

I have learned that being flexible is so important to staying motivated. There are just some days where you have to roll with the punches and make the most of it.

There are days where I really, really count on my son to nap so I can get a blog post written and it doesn’t happen. So then I just switch my plans to writing it when he goes down for bed. That way even though I have to stay up a little later, it still gets done.

Letting up on some control and being flexible will help keep that motivation going.

I hope these tips can provide some relief if you are struggling with motivation on those difficult, exhausting days in motherhood. If you have some tips on how to stay motivated, I would love for to join the discussion and comment below.


Erin Apple is a stay at home mom to a rambunctious toddler boy with another little boy all the way. She is a mama blogger passionate about providing tips and advice for expecting and new moms on all topics about motherhood–pregnancy, postpartum, moms mental health, breastfeeding, newborn stage, sleep regressions, baby must have products, etc. You can learn more by visiting her blog at Becoming Mamas Together. You can also follow her on Instagram or Facebook.


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