What We Owe Mums For: Time, Love, Advice…And The Rest

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Amongst the increasing noise around ongoing gender imbalance in the workplace, a recent survey (commissioned by Next) has sought to find out exactly what we owe our mums for. Just how much mums give their children – in a thousand different ways, and even after the “kids” have left home – is often given lip service without fully appreciating every aspect of this support.

What do you owe your mum for the most – borrowed clothes? Wise words? Learning about style and make-up?  Mother’s Day might be past us for another year, but we know we should show our appreciation more than once!

Time for everyone, under an hour for herself

8 in 10 mums feel they get less than an hour to themselves daily. But the average mum could be spending more than an hour and a half ferrying her children around, or almost 4 hours watching her child taking part in sports and other hobbies.

The spectating alone rolls up to 112 days over the course of a childhood. Say “thank you” by giving one of those days back – take your mum out for the day, give her a spa day all to herself, and make sure that the mums you know (including you, if you’re a mother) are creating a little bit of time for themselves each day.

We all appreciate the importance of a little “me” time, but few mums feel like they actually get much. It’s easy to let self-care take the backseat – but as a mum, you just accept it. However, this time to ourselves is unquestionably important for robust mental health; even a couple of quiet cups of tea, or a soothing 30-minute bath, can work wonders.

Instilling a sense of pride

Mums love to share proud moments of their kids on social media, especially in the South West – West Country mums post about their kids’ proud moments an average of 6 times a month.

The kids don’t seem to mind too much though – they still give their mums 15 cuddles a week, more than 2 a day. While your parents’ boasting can be a little embarrassing at the time, this kind of pride is really important – it shows us that we can be proud of ourselves, too.

What can’t be counted: invaluable advice

For many of us, it’s not until we’re a little older and often when we’ve started families of our own that the true scale of everything we owe our mums is understood (75% of mums agreed that having kids themselves made them realise this).

40% of mums say their own mother is the person who’s had the biggest impact on their life. Whether that’s due to them helping us learn about ourselves, for comforting us when we’re sad and showing us how to laugh again or for remembering all the details.

The average mum is having 17 heart-to-hearts each year with her children, full of advice and encouragement. We might take this for granted at the time (or show our appreciation with the occasional bunch of flowers and box of chocolates), but as we mature we realise how important this support is in helping us define our sense of self.

So the next time you show your appreciation, why not give back something a little harder to quantify? Love, time and support needn’t cost a thing, but are always valued. https://www.next.co.uk/mothersday/thank-you-mum

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