Alexandra Hughes

Coaching Mothers to a Place of

calm & joyful living

Receive 3 simple strategies to joyful calm

happy day

A hair flippin’ morning

I was walking proud.

I was feeling good.

No, really good.


It had been a no-scream, no fight morning. I’d just had a lovely time with my 7 year old boy during his class’ open house AND been stopped by a mother on the street and complimented on my blog.


Every second Thursdays parents are invited to spend time with their kids in their classrooms.

The children are so delighted to share their work. And although I often approach this opportunity as an inconvenience, I always end up appreciating the uninterrupted one-on-one time with my boy.


It was one of those Thursdays.


AND in addition to the successful open house, I had no post-morning guilt tainting my aura.


happy day

photo credit: fauxto_digit

That’s right.

We’d gotten to school on time (sort of, last in the door…nevermind).

I’d parked legally (this is a big deal).

All my kids were appropriately dressed.

Teeth were brushed (mine included!)

And water bottles were in tow.


I had showered and blow dried my hair.


And the cherry on top: Mr. Husband Dad had prepared a delicious cappuccino for me in his beloved expresso machine, that I’d managed to poor into my transportable thermos thingee (as opposed to my usual coffee cup that spills all over my car, regularly).


I had finally purchased the replacement for my remote control key (original dropped in sewer week previous in moment of stress, while illegally parked – another story)


We’d left the house (get this…) without screaming! And (double get this…) without fights!


Mr. 7 and I had giggled together during the open house, playing math games.

There we were. Me sipping my cappuccino, flipping my blow dried hair. And he gently caressing my hand and sipping his water from his water bottle.


“He’s so sweet.”

“He’s so clever.”

“He’s drinking water.” (FINALLY!)

“I must be doing something right.”


The sun was shining and life couldn’t have gotten much better.

It was an “I’m doing ok” kind-of moment.


With my back to the school, I opened the car door in my LEGAL parking spot, carefully popped in my coffee thermos and…


my son’s water bottle (!?!).



All too good to be true.

And that familiar voice snuck in:

“…great Alex, just as he starts to finally drink water at school, you mess up and take his water bottle away. Thanks to you, he’ll be thirsty all day.” (because, hey, I was not about to walk back up that hill and give it to him…even guilt has its limits!)



“Hush”, I say to the all familiar voice.


“Never mind.” says a soft voice. “You did good.”

And with a flip of my blow dried hair and a giggle. I drove my 7 (completely walkable) blocks home.


Moral of the story:

Listening to our inner critic and holding onto its negative ‘you messed up, you aren’t doing enough” messages can easily become a dominant pattern and driving voice in our stressful lives.

Mindful awareness helps us to recognise the voice, hear it, laugh (or cry!) with it, and switch a more holistic perspective and supportive place that, in my case, recognises the existence of water fountains (-;


Awareness is the first step towards change.


And if you are keen on working with your self talk, and inviting an alternative voice that supports you to develop a calmer and more compassionate mind, please join my Calm Mom Coaching Circle.

The next session begins this Wednesday 28th January at Lil Omm Yoga Studio. Click here to learn more and/ or register.

photo credit: magdalena

So, what is this Calm Mom Coaching Circle about, anyway?






Emotional intelligence.




It is about a small group of mothers coming together in a safe and empathetic space to integrate these beautiful qualities into their lives.

It is about sharing and exploring simple take-home strategies for managing and reducing Mom-related stress.

It is about being supported in stepping towards a more authentic you, the calm and joyful Mom you really are. The Mom guided by love and patience.

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Ever enter Tyrannosaurus Rex mode, Mom?

Sometimes I become a person I don’t recognise,

a mother I don’t want to be.


“Ya no puedo más!”

[translation: “I can’t do this anymore!”]

“Déjame en paz!”

[translation: “Leave me in peace!”]


I am a mother who tries REALLY REALLY hard not to say: “Not now, I’m busy.”


I try to do stop what I’m doing when one of my three children call me.

I work to be present, listen, hear what they are saying.


It’s hard. Super hard.


And by the time 7pm comes around, my husband still isn’t home (or is abroad which means he won’t be coming home for days), I often find myself breaking this rule BIG TIME.

This means I find my inner voice talking to me in Spanish.


See, Spanish is my first language, but I left Peru when I was 3, so never mastered it academically.

Yet in moments of true guttural feeling i.e., lust or pain, words of passion surface in Spanish.

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photo credit: János Balázs

RELAX??!! I don’t have time to relax!

Almost every mother I speak with tells me they want to simplify and slow down their family life. They complain of overwhelm, stress, exhaustion.  And then, less than one minute later, they scoff at the possibility of a relaxed lifestyle, or calm and joyful living.


Because busy-ness, go-go-go’ing from one planned activity to another has become the norm.

And saying “no” to the pulls and pushes that make our lives so busy feels wrong.

Saying “no” to an after school enrichment class feels wrong, like we are jilting our 5 year old of their birth-given right to tae-kwon-do, or violin lessons.

Saying “no” to organising that class Valentines’ Day party feels wrong, like we are shying away from our memory-making, school community responsibility and yet, again, not showing up for our kid.

Saying “no” to our boss when he asks us to stay late feels wrong, like we are failing our professional development and feeding into a “mother can’t make it in the workplace” stereotype, thus failing professional mothers the world over!

Saying “no” to the perfect house feels wrong, because it reminds us that we aren’t getting it right, we aren’t in control of our own homes.

So, we keep saying “yes”.

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Setting the tone for 2015

The transition time between the old and the new year offers us an opportunity to reflect, learn and set the tone for what is to come.

In addition to inviting a conscious intent into our year, taking a few moments to do this supports our on-going personal development and growth as women and mothers.

Too busy?

This is a chance to create intention and set the tone for the next 12 months, Mom. It’s not about resolution. It’s about growth.

Please, take a moment and do this for YOU.

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