Dealing with Mom Guilt

Dealing with Mom Guilt – Part I

Working Mom’s Guilt 

Becoming a mother is one of the most beautiful, amazing, rewarding….and guilt-inducing things you will ever go through. The one thing most mothers has in common is this horrible feeling of inadequacy and guilt in not being a “good” mother. We face this no matter what kind of mom you are. Over the next few entries, we will discuss ways to alleviate those pesky little negative voices in your head.

The Working Mom’s Worry:

“I don’t spend enough time with my kids. I am missing out on EVERYTHING!”

This is a worry that I myself have experienced, and honestly am still experiencing it, being that I am a working mom. The feeling is often brought on when I am told about something my son has done while I am at work. No matter who you are, or how much you love your job, no working mother wants to feel that they are failing at the job of being a mother, even if they are succeeding at their chosen career.

Tennis pro, mega athlete, and all-around Superwoman Serena Williams recently posted on her social media that she missed her daughter Olympia’s first steps because she was away training.

Serena Williams tweet for blog

Many mothers chimed in to stand in support of Williams and admit that they too experienced similar feelings over missing major milestones or accomplishments. If you are worried that these missed moments are a sign that you are a “bad” mother –  STOP THAT! You are not! 

Even if you sat in a room with your child all day and stared at them nonstop, the moment you went to the bathroom would probably be when she stands, walks, and gives a full monologue. You cannot predict when these things will happen, and the truth is when you are a working mother there is a greater chance that you may miss some moments. Though this may be a painful truth, it does not have to mean that you will miss out on every joyous moment.


Here are some tips from one mom to another that I found helpful to me to deal with Mommy FOMO. 

1. Schedule ‘Mom & Me’ Time 

We know that for most moms our life is a non-stop hamster wheel of things to do, so perhaps this may seem like a daunting task, but it may be worth the head space to try. Can there be a routine or activity that you have with your little one that is just for the two of you? Something that can ease that guilt of not being with them all day? Perhaps bedtime can be ‘Mommy-time’? Can you spend some time when you come home to snuggle, play with or read to your little one?

For me and my son this involved getting down on all fours and chasing him back and forth in our apartment as soon as I walked through the door. He is two now and will still immediately drop to the floor and scurry away laughing when I come home, this is our “thing” and he loves it! For him it is the joy of chasing me and being chased, and for me it is the joy of hearing his laughter as soon as I come home. For that wonderful sound, every other chore can wait!

2. Have a ‘Mommy Date’ 

I can still vividly remember the joyous feeling as a child when my mother would tell me that we were going to have a “date” together. It made me feel so excited and special, because I knew that my mom was going to spend time with just me. This was time for us to do something together and for me to have her undivided attention. These things are important to kids.

The “date” doesn’t need to be extravagant or expensive, it doesn’t even need to mean going out. You could have a date at home that involves playing their favorite games, having them teach you a new dance move, or even cooking their favorite dish together. It is simply time carved out for individual attention and interaction with your child.

Also, the “date” doesn’t always have to be pre-planned, surprise your child with a day off together, perhaps before school is letting out for the summer, and spend the day hanging out. Your child will think you are the coolest mom ever and you can still use the day to get some errands done if you’d like but remember to include and focus on doing things that your kid will enjoy.

3. Include your child in your activities 

Sometimes as mothers one of the hardest things to do is to allow others to help us with the laundry list of tasks that we have to do. Therein lies a problem; we have so many things to do, we don’t want to have any assistance in finishing tasks, we complain about having so much to do and no help to do it. Could you perhaps have some household chore or errand that becomes something that you and your kid can do together? They could become your ‘gardening assistant’, your ‘sous chef’, your ‘laundry buddy’, etc.

Even if they don’t do the task as well as you would or as neatly as you’d like, try to resist taking over the task. Doing these things together will not only allow you to have one-on-one time with them but will also help them to learn a new skill as well. Be sure to give them plenty of praise and commendation for their help as well.

4. Be Kind to Yourself 

This may sound like such a simple concept, but it can be one of the hardest things for a mom. We as women can be so critical of ourselves and especially so as moms. When we look at other moms we feel that they can achieve some level of motherhood that we are not able to achieve no matter how hard we try. DON’T DO THIS!

Every mother is struggling, every mother is trying her best, and for that reason every mom is awesome! A better measurement of your job well done is to look at the light in your child’s eyes when you walk in the door, the width of the smile on their face when they get to spend time with you and the volume of their laughter when you are having fun together. Even when you think you are a terrible mother to your child you are amazing. Remember that!


So to all my working Mom-friends out there; you’re doing great honey! Keep it up!

Do you have any tips for how you deal with your Mommy-guilt? Let me know in the comments below. 

My First Year as a Travel Agent

I love to travel to different places.

It allows me to experience how people think, experience and relate to the world – each shaped by their upbringing, culture, nature and what they have seen, read and felt.   I have found, as a universal truth, although our culture, idioms and language make us different, unique, individual, our basic humanity and feelings of happy, hungry, sad, mad and glad unite us so we can still form a connection with others despite these differences. 


I am a traveller, writer, teacher and a travel professional (i.e. a travel agent).  I not only plan my travel but take the journey along with others as I help them plan theirs as well.

One day,  my travel agent host company, asked a question to us travel agents to describe their first year as a travel agent.

This is what I wrote. 


Written by:  on February 21, 2018

Written by: Allison Ali, KHM Travel Group Travel Agent

Once an agent reaches the one year mark with with KHM Travel Group, we send them a congratulatory email and a survey to share their feedback with us. It also gives them the chance to tell us about their struggles, and their successes.

One agent, Allison of Allison’s Travel in New York, went above and beyond with her response to the prompt, “We would love to hear a success story from your first year! Whether it be about a training you completed, or your first booking, or just something you are proud of accomplishing with your business…let us know about it!” 

The first year as a travel agent can be exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. Stories like Allison’s are a reminder that you are not alone in your experience, and that a little time spent reflecting on what you want from your business can result in powerful realizations. 

“How was your first year as a travel agent?”

This question required me to revisit my thoughts and activities from my recent past. In SpeakMemory, the author Vladimir Nabokov summoned his memory to “speak” what it had consciously and sub-consciously stored. This journey into the past can be quite revealing. It can reveal some defining moments of concentrated, calculated efforts and bear fortuitous rewards when asking the right question at the right time.

So Speak, Memory….

I remember I said to a colleague of mine, “I am a travel agent.” She said she was just looking for a travel agent because her long-time travel agent had just retired. This told me this individual is loyal to her travel agent. The way we possessively and loyally refer to “my doctor”, “my mechanic”, or “my haircutter”, I wanted my clients to have me in their mind when they think of “my travel agent”, and call me. As a professional colleague, she was already familiar with my work ethic and knew that I was thorough, organized, professional and knowledgeable and that these abilities were transferable, so I became her travel agent and she has made several bookings with me already.

I love to travel and see the world. I believe and have experienced the truth of Nelson Mandela’s words, when he says you visit a place, and although you left it unchanged, you, yourself walked away changed. During my travels, this has happened to me many times over.

It is as though I think different thoughts when I am in different countries, not necessarily through interaction with the people and landscapes, but perhaps more with the interaction of myself in those places.

I became a travel agent to help others plan and enjoy their destination of choice,while expanding my knowledge and understanding of different places and how others have enjoyed their time there.

Many travel industry articles speak of creating your niche, either through being knowledgeable about certain destinations, or by working with particular categories – newlyweds, groups, reunions, etc. A first year travel agent, or rookie, may or may not be able to develop a niche either because they may feel they don’t have enough specialized knowledge, or not enough clients to support their particular expertise, so they accept almost any interest and business.

I can certainly see the wisdom in developing a niche, but my goal for the first year was to build my client base through my reputation. I want them to remember and talk about the service I provided and not just the money they saved on their vacation. I met this goal. One of my clients I booked a vacation in Punta Cana for September, had two date changes because of the hurricanes. She was happy with my service and going the extra mile and referred two clients to me.

This is what I have spent my first year as a travel agent doing. For many of us, we are
home-based and may still hold other jobs. For clients to see you as legitimate and here to stay, and that this is not just another job you do, you need to provide excellent service, show commitment to building the relationship, make them a priority, and be well-researched and prepared. This will let them know you take it seriously and will continue to be a support for them.

So in searching my memory, I looked back at my year and saw that my focus was to provide quality service that is as memorable as their vacation. It is what I am known for and want to be remember for.

Perhaps one day I will work on carving out a niche based on a destination or continent or category or not. I like the journey the clients take me on as well through the planning and research of where they want to go next and how they want to spend their time there.