Find Your Joy! How Pursuing your Passions can Make you a Happier Parent

Updated: Mar 30, 2021

We have to to make a lot of sacrifices when we become parents. There's simply not enough time in the day to do everything we used to do 'pre-kids' as well as completing the plethora of parenting responsibilities.

Inevitably something has to go.

Often the things that bring you the most joy are the first to be crossed off the 'to do' list - they seem like luxury activities that aren't essential to the mechanics of your parenting day. This is completely understandable in those early years where sleep, eating and coffee are the only things you have time to enjoy (besides drinking in the magnificence of the human you created), yet as we start to come out of that 'newborn fog' many of us forget to reinstate those joyous activities. We get into the habit of putting the childrens' needs and wants ahead of our own and de-valuing our joy. Over time we get a little bit less joyous and that passionate zest for life can diminish.

It doesn't have to be this way...

You deserve to feel joy again! You do! Joy puts a smile on your face, it lightens your invisible

load, it cheers you up from the inside out and you radiate a different vibe. Your kids feel this vibe and it inspires them too.

You see, joy is NOT selfish - a happier parent has a positive impact on the whole family. In fact if you look at it from this perspective - you owe it to your children to reinstate those passions. Don't you want to role model that there's value in doing things that bring you joy?

So what are you waiting for!!

Meet Renee Johnston

- Australian Artist and Mum of 2

Let me tell you a story about a friend of mine, Renee Johnston.

Renee is a busy Mum of two living in Brisbane. Renee has always had a passion for the arts. She grew up watching her grandfather paint zebra finches onto canvas and her father was a professional painter by trade. From a young age she would create her own art and enjoyed telling stories through dance.

As an adult Renee continued her passion for creating and would work on her art in her spare time and shared her passion for dance through teaching others. Once Renee became a Mum, however, her creative time began to diminish. She had to prioritise her responsibilities with her young children and working. Renee didn't lose her passion for art though, it was just on the back burner for a bit until she had more time and energy. Fast forward to present day and Renee's children are now 4 and 2. Life is still busy but there are little snippets of time where Renee has the opportunity to pursue her passions. She could spend this time watching Netflix of course (and there's nothing wrong with that) but Renee's passion for creation is strong and she finds the time each day to nurture her joy. It is simply amazing how this joy shines through into her artwork. Renee even finds a way to involve her children in the creative process and after visiting her home, adorned by her beautiful pieces of art, the collective joyous vibe emanates the space.

Renee describes her artistic process below...

"My work is an exploration of numerous delicate acrylic pours using colour to provoke emotion. My art is not solely limited to one technique or medium and is guided by my mood. My artwork is often a reflection of what is happening in and around me at that time. It's my passion and I delight in sharing it with others.

Acrylic Pouring is a fascinating fluid painting technique. Depending on the technique I use, this liquefied paint is then poured into each other or tilted onto the canvas and distributed by tilting the painting surface. Depending on the choice of the colour, the medium and the additives, different effects take form. Like a photograph my artwork captures a moment in time. I hope my paintings give people a feeling of optimism through my canvases’ fresh colour and form."

Recently I asked Renee to create a bespoke piece to enliven the presentation of our online magazine. She took our colour palette and created four beautiful pieces that completely fit with the vibe we were trying to create. We are excited to share Renee's passion and joy with the readers of our magazine.

So What's your Passion?

Back to you... what passion have you been neglecting since you have become a parent? Think about how much joy that passion brought you in your life before parenthood. Can you bring that joy back to your new world? Maybe you need to shuffle things around in your day, maybe you need to reach out for babysitting support from friends or family. Or perhaps it's just a simple case of reprioritisation that is required.

Whatever it is... bring back your joy. Value yourself. Value your passion. I'm positive you will be happier as a result. If you are happy there's a good chance your children will be happier too.

To see more of Renee's amazing artwork​ or to get your own bespoke piece created for your home or business visit...

We are very excited to announce that Renee has agreed to become one of our contributors here at Parent Like You. We can look forward to enjoying her 'Arty Mum' articles in the near future.

Stay tuned!

Kirsty xoxo

(Founder and Editor of Parent Like You)

Kirsty is a Teacher, Family Coach, Mum of three special boys and author of the book 'Values Guided Parenting'.

She has combined her passion for parenting, her love of literacy and her 17 years of experience working with children & families to found Parent Like You.

Kirsty's vision is to create a positive, informative and nourishing online

experience for parents to enjoy when they have some downtime in their day. She hopes to inspire parents to think deeply about their own values and use these to guide their unique style of confident and capable parenting.