Ohhh, self-care. You hear it everywhere these days. And what’s usually the first thing you think about?
Bubble baths? Spa treatments?
Those things sound great, but honestly, who has the time?
Between work, parenting, and all the things around the house that keep piling up, you’d feel guilty spending any extra time on yourself.
And how on earth can you fit a few extra minutes in for self-care when you can’t even go to the bathroom without tiny fingers under the door?
That’s basically how I feel about it. Anytime I’m even able to sneak away to shower without kids popping in to ask me questions every twenty seconds, I feel just a touch guilty. As if for whatever crazy reason, I’m not worthy of those few minutes.
Why the guilt?
Great question. For me, I think it boils down to my need to be a caretaker. My need to put everyone else in my life first and to make sure their needs are met.
Part of me gets my self-worth from the fact that I’m able to be everything for everyone else. And if I take time away from others to give to myself, well, wouldn’t that be selfish?
I know how silly it sounds, but this has been my mindset around self-care ever since I became a mom.
But what I’ve found is that when I’m able to actually take the time to pour back into myself, I’m able to be so much more for the people I love because I’m in a better frame of mind and have more energy.
It still doesn’t make it easy to choose myself over others, but it’s something I’m working on.
And what’s helped me get started is thinking about self-care in a different light. It doesn’t have to be bubble baths and spa days (but it totally can be if that’s what you want!).
Self-care can truly be anything you want it to be.
So if you’re struggling to get started with self-care, give these four simple self-care practices a shot. While they might be small, I know you’ll see the difference.
4 SIMPLE SELF-CARE PRACTICES FOR THE MOM WHO STRUGGLES TO TAKE TIME FOR HERSELF
TAKE BACK NAP TIME
Do your kids still nap? Do you usually use that entire block of time to get everything on your to-do list checked off in T-2 hours or less, heaven forbid?
Instead of kicking it into high gear when you put the kids down, sit down. Read a book. Catch up on your shows or watch a chick flick. Actually make a lunch you don’t have to share and put your feet up.
The laundry can wait, and so can the dishes. And why even try to clean up the toys anyways? They never stay that way.
Take that quiet time for you to do nothing but recharge. Your kids, your home, and your chores will thank you later when you have that newfound sense of energy.
Let your husband or partner know you need a little extra sleep on Saturday morning. After all, you get woken up early most days, having to get up and go go go all day long. Take an extra hour one day a week for you.
Sleep in or just lay in bed for a while and scroll through your phone. Just enjoy the peace and quiet. It doesn’t have to be a big, well-planned day to be self-care. Sometimes, all you need is a little peace and quiet.
TAKE UP A HOBBY
If you’re like a lot of moms out there, once you had kids you gave up all the things you loved. It’s so common. You pour all your love and attention into that tiny human who is relying on you for everything.
But now, maybe your kids are a little bigger now and you can find a little extra time for yourself.
Think back to a hobby you once loved or always wanted to try, and just do it! Make it a priority. Even if you just have that hour after you put the kids to bed, do it. You’ll be amazed at the energy boost you get from doing something you love.
GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT
Another simple thing that can give back to you in so many ways is a simple girls’ night out. Sometimes you just need that time to connect with old friends, maybe other moms, and chat about all the things you can talk to your kids about all day every day.
Connection is essential to health, but it’s something that is easy to let go during one of the loneliest times in life – early motherhood.
Make it a priority to stay in touch and get together regularly. This simple self-care practice will reenergize you in ways you never knew you needed!
IN SHORT, KEEP IT SIMPLE!
You don’t have to go all out booking a massage or spa treatment for your self-care time. Just dig deep, figure out what you’ve been missing, and help fill in the gaps with a little rest and relaxation, connection, or by simply spending your time the way you want to.
What’s one self-care practice you’ll try today?