Jessica Alba on mum life: “Cut yourself some slack, bite off what you can chew”

Jessica Alba for Cosmopolitan

Actor Jessica Alba, currently pregnant with her third child, confirmed in a recent interview that even successful, well-resourced mothers sometimes want to hide in the pantry and eat chips.

“Four songs each”

Jess is co-founder of The Honest Company as well as being a very successful movie star type, but when she heads home to her family, it seem she’s as torn and tired as the rest of us.

Not only does she admit she’s just busting for some quiet time, she revealed that her bedtime routine involves an awful lot of lullabies! (The eight song tally is hurting our brains a little!)

“What really stresses me out the most is thinking about bedtime. My kids like me to sing four songs each to them at night and after a long day of work, all I want to do is eat and decompress,” Jess told US Today. “You always feel compromised and like you’re pulled in too many directions. It’s a balance that I have yet to see perfectly achieved.”

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“There is no me time”

Jess and husband, producer Cash Warren, are parents to 9-year-old Honor and 6-year-old Haven. Echoing the thoughts of parents across the globe, Jess says parenting her girls is excellent – and downright exhausting. We’re certain her eager-to-keep-the-peace overthinking mirrors that of many anxious parents.

“I love the cuddle time, but at the same time, I feel so drained. It’s like there is no me time. So, I am like OK, which kid do I choose first? Is there going to be a fight? But it is the only quiet time we get with them to talk about their day and they open up in a different way when they are laying down. It’s hard.”

Guilty as charged

Jess also had some thoughts about the comparison game – i.e. it’s the thief of joy and you should not buy into it under any circumstances.

“I think it’s really easy to compare your business to other people’s businesses and your life to other people’s lives. I am guilty of doing it,”

“I see moms at school who are always volunteering to have baked goods. Do I want to be that person? Yeah, I sort of fantasize about it sometimes, but it’s just not my reality.”

Self-care and prioritising your own needs, at least some of the time, is vital for parents, Jess says.

“Any mom who all of the sudden has little people that rely heavily on them for survival needs to maintain her own sense of self.”

Ease up

Jess also says lowering our expectations and being a bit more forgiving of ourselves are vital sanity savers.

“You need to cut yourself some slack and bite off what you can chew. Things will be compromised and you just have to be okay with that.”

This is so true, and in the end we’re often putting way too much pressure on ourselves to be perfect parents. Taking smaller bits and enjoying them more seems like a great idea.

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