My Problem with the Busy Mom

full life

A couple years ago I picked up a brochure from my local grocery store and on the back there was a small bio about the nutritionist who had helped to create the pamphlet. As I read a little about her I was struck by the fact that she was described as a busy mom. As I read her bio I was reminded of how frequently this little adjective (busy) was being used to describe moms. Each time I read or heard someone use this word to describe themselves or another mom I would cringe. This might seem like an odd reaction, and even I had to ask myself why I was so bothered by people using the word “busy” to describe a mom.

Moms are busy. I think that goes without saying.  Perhaps that is the first reason I am not a fan of using the word to describe this group of women.  It’s like describing an athlete as athletic or a painter as artistic. It’s redundant. I have children to care for, a home to keep, meals to plan and prep, homework to oversee, appointments to make, parties to plan, bedtime stories to read. (Do I need to keep going?  I could.) Moms are busy. It’s a given.

I also don’t like this description because it seems to imply that if you just write “mom” it’s not enough. Is it not enough to write, “She’s a mom of 4 who enjoys spending time inside and outside the home.  She is a homemaker, writer, and gifted guitarist.”? I guess that’s not enough because “busy” pops up before the word mom wherever I turn.

The third and most important reason I don’t like using the word “busy” to describe a mom is because I don’t (as a mom) want to live a life that is defined as busy. As I mentioned earlier I do believe that moms are busy.  The list of things that moms need to accomplish is endless, and usually with each additional child the list becomes longer. I can’t escape this. You can’t escape this. What we can do is avoid getting caught up in the busy.  The tag line for this blog is “living a full life without the busy”. We will certainly have lists for the day, the “to dos” that can’t be avoided, the tasks that come with the roles in which we find ourselves, but I want to be very intentional about how I fill my days and my life. I want to be careful not to get caught up in the busy. I am so much more than a busy mom.

There is a lot more to write on this topic, and I will be continuing this conversation. It is the heart of this blog.

What about you? Do you mind be referred to as a “busy mom”?

Until next time,


Author: Charissa

Welcome! I am so glad you are here! I'm Charissa, the Not So Busy Mom, wife and mother of 3. Join me as we pursue a full life without the busy.

28 thoughts on “My Problem with the Busy Mom”

  1. I never thought of it that way, and I am guilty of throwing the term busy around a lot myself. Maybe I need to cut back since you have a point, every mom is busy! 🙂

    1. It’s helpful to start considering a “full life”, a life where the majority of things we do are intentional and full of purpose.

  2. Very interesting perspective on always applying busy to moms. Come to think of it I’ve never heard a mom described as habing plenty of free time.

    1. Hi Rebekah. I started really paying attention to how often the phrase was used, and I was completely blown away (and disappointed) with how often moms were referred to as “busy”.

    1. Hi, Leighann! I don’t know if I have ever heard the term “busy dad” so yes, I don’t think it needs to be added to “mom” either. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  3. I totally agree! It seems like moms feel they have to stay busy. If they aren’t doing something they will fill the time with something new. It’s so important for me to not be “busy” but rather to be intentional.

  4. I completely agree with your point that without ‘busy’, it’s like ‘mom’ isn’t enough. Some days I get to be a laid-back or lazy mom, but that doesn’t make me any less of a mom!

  5. Awesome post! I just had a baby in Septemeber and I never realized how much I should value time until he had him. My life has definitely been busier but I don’t think I ever used the term “busy” mom either.. I just think of it as being a “Mom”. 🙂

  6. You make an incredible point! While I am guilty of this myself sometimes, I do try to remind myself that the reason I do have many things to do is because I was blessed with children. Yet… if I constantly tell myself that I am so busy then I take a step back and cut back on things, because if I get to busy, I take it out on my kids, and they don’t deserve that! By doing the important things your life becomes full, as you say and not busy.

  7. I couldn’t agree with you more but, I definitely struggle with always feeling so busy. I have been working on not always replying that way when people ask how I am but, realizing I choose what I want to do in any given day. I’m learning to clear our schedule so we can enjoy more family time alone.

    1. I love your honesty here, Jehava. I feel like I still have so much to write about this topic (good thing since that’s the point of the blog!), but I will say that there are 2 main components to letting go of busy. The first is a lot of what I have already written about like considering priorities, making intentional choices, knowing when to say “no”…but then I think there is another part. This part is about what and how we think about our lives and the things we do. We sometimes categorize all that we have to do as “busy”, but if we view our tasks as elements of a full, well-lived life then they don’t seem so burdensome. Does that make sense?

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