This Is the 1 Surefire Way to Know If You’re a Good Mother

There’s no doubt about it — motherhood isn’t easy, and most of us don’t know where we’d be without our moms. From packing school lunches in our younger years to only being a phone call away when we need advice, moms are pretty much superheroes packed into human bodies.

Still, many mothers wonder if, after all these years, they’re any good at parenting. Here’s how to tell if you’re a stellar mom, with one point in particular you need to pay attention to.

You allow your children to have their own hopes and dreams

portrait of a group of children running on the beach

It’s wise to allow your child’s mind to run free. | Stockbyte/Getty Images

We know you want the best for your kids — and that means allowing them to follow their own dreams, despite how different they may be from your own. Parents uses the term “helicopter parent” to describe moms who are a little too involved in their kids’ lives. When you’re this type of mother, you over-control and overprotect, which can cause your child to lose their sense of autonomy.

We know you have good intentions, but being a helicopter parent can cause your child to have low self-esteem and undeveloped life skills. Allow your children to figure out their own passions and learn the meaning of hard work to reach their goals.

You’re encouraging, not competitive, with other moms

Kristen Bell, Mila Kunis and Kathryn Hahn throw a party in a scene in Bad Moms

Other moms are your friend. | Universal

No matter what stage of life your children are at, you’ll always have those moms who will boast and rave over their kids’ accomplishments in a competitive fashion. As tempting as it is, don’t follow suit. Today explains competitive moms may be feeling insecure with themselves and are looking to bolster their own self-esteem.

To combat any mom competition you may come across, respond with kindness by saying something nice about how well their kids are doing, or how great things seem to be going for them. If you can deescalate the situation, the other mom you’re talking to may drop their competitive nature.

You’re flexible when things don’t go according to plan

Three children (5-7 years) tying mother with rope in living room

It’s hard to plan things to a T when young children are around. | Darrin Klimek/Getty Images

As moms tell another article from Today, structure is important, especially when your children are in their younger years. But if you miss your typical dinner time or have to change things up in your schedule, then being a flexible mom who can roll with the punches is in your best interest. Mom Tari Pizzi tells the publication, “There’s always the guilt that you’re not there enough. Sometimes you are there and not there, because you are stressed and tired.” But at the end of the day, being adaptable will serve you well.

Your kids don’t always agree with everything you do

Little child boy enjoying his delicious lemonade

It’s important to reinforce who is the adult. | iStock.com/djedzura

We all want our children to like us and come to us with all of their questions and concerns. But problems can arise if you become your child’s best friend rather than their parent. Joshua Straub, Ph.D., says playing the friend instead of the authority figure shows your kids the world is free of structure and consequence. This means your offspring might be less likely to take responsibility for their actions as adults, or they may grow up to believe they really are the center of the universe.

Your kids won’t always agree with your decisions, but as the mom, it’s your responsibility to put your foot down. This will serve them well throughout their lives.

You know how to set a good example

Parents Giving Children Piggyback Ride

Children definitely look to their parents for life examples. | iStock.com/monkeybusinessimages

From a young age all the way to adulthood, children are always watching their parents. U.S. News and World Report explains it’s not enough to sit down with your kids and talk to them about values — it’s the small instances that add up and make a difference.

Setting good examples of what and what not to do daily is key, but so is explaining why. When your kids hear your process as to why you made the decision you did, you can teach a lesson without feeling like a boring lecturer.

The 1 way to know: You always have your children’s best interests at heart …

kids celebrate at an outdoor birthday party, getting ready to eat cake

Do everything in your child’s best interest. | iStock.com

It’s basic, yes, but it is the most important rule of them all. WebMD says even the best moms have doubts about their decisions, but as long as you believe you’re doing what’s best, then you shouldn’t worry. As Marybeth Hicks, mother of four, tells the publication, “When you’re comfortable with your decisions, you need to just stand in them and own them and recognize that the only one you have to answer to is your child later.”

In essence, don’t stress about your parenting skills too much. As long as you show love and support, you can’t go wrong.

… but you make time for yourself, too

Woman relaxing in spa studio

Don’t forget about good ol’ “me time.” | iStock.com/KatarzynaBialasiewicz

Here’s the struggle for moms — you always want to be present for your kids, but sometimes, that leaves little room to take care of yourself. If you’re running on empty, however, no one benefits. It’s vital you take time for yourself to relax and renew so you can be the best person possible for your family.

As mom Mia Redrick tells The Huffington Post, “Modeling self-care allows us moms to create a family culture that supports rest and reflection during a time in history when we all move and do more faster than the speed of light.” Trust us, it’s OK to put your feet up and rest for as long as you need.

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