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As moms we often tend to put our own needs last. I’m plenty guilty of this, even when I think it’s also going to be beneficial for the family in the long run. Ultimately, I know that I need to take care of myself because if I don’t, I get stressed and when I get stressed, that starts to trickle down into other aspects. It’s not fair to myself or to myself and I’m not doing anyone any favors. I want to share a few self care tips and ideas for moms though this could apply to any caregiver or individual who has a tendency to put themselves last.
As a stay at home mom, keeping and sticking to a schedule is important. I know this… as a blogger, this should be even more important.
But it’s also something that I have a bad habit of neglecting. I’m well aware of my pitfalls and my tendencies to want to work, work, work. I still try to make sure that I take a break but even during those breaks, I’m not really resting. At the very least, I’m away from the computer, but more often than not, I’m still doing something.
Is that such a bad thing?
Of course not.
The house needs to be picked up, dishes need to be washed, and of course, I can’t exactly ignore the toddler that is seemingly attached to my hip at all hours of the day. Or my autistic teenager when she gets home from school. Suffice it to say, my days aren’t exactly tranquil. And once I really get all of my notions and visions of grandeur going, well… I’ll get to that bridge when it’s time and hopefully by then, I’ll have more reliable routine in place.
A routine that will also include taking care of myself and intentionally scheduling in at least ten minutes of me time.
Sure, I have choir practice once a week and I go to church on Sunday. So while it is time away and something that is just for me; it’s still not doing something that’s a hobby or taking a break. I’m still doing something.
And well, good self care is also important for my overall health. Three easy (or so it would seem) things that I can do to take care of myself are:
Taking Care of My Body
When you are caring for a family, taking care of your health is important. Make time to exercise each day, even if it is only for 20 minutes. Exercising releases endorphins, the “feel good” chemical. This will help you to be a more positive role model and a more enjoyable individual to be around.
Eat a variety of organic whole foods. Although the fast pace of parenting sometimes causes us to rely on fast foods, don’t let this become your main source of energy. Stock up on fruits and vegetables which will provide you with an array of nutrients and enzymes, which naturally give you a more sustainable energy. Keep a selection of lean proteins and fresh foods around that can be prepared quickly, so you do not feel forced into the processed food trap.
Getting Enough Sleep
No one can function peacefully when sleep deprived. If you want to be the best you can be to everyone around you, consider setting a regular bedtime for yourself and stick to it the best you can. This will benefit those around you, and you personally as you will have less stress to carry on your shoulders.
Releasing Parental Guilt
No one is perfect. When caring for a family, a parent often feels they are doing everything wrong. Do your best, and don’t fret about the things you cannot control. There is no way for you to micromanage the life of each family member, so relax and take it easy on yourself and others. Change what you can, and don’t worry about the rest. This will put you back in a position of being able to carry the emotional load that parenting requires you to.
Another thing that I can do?
Indulge in a hobby and treat myself every so often.
I’ve never been huge on the whole self-pampering thing. Sure, I like the occasional long soak in the tub and maybe I could be better with a yoga routine or daily meditation. But self pampering was never one of those things that I was on board with. I mean, that time could be better spent on my kids or that money could be used for the whole household.
Does that sound familiar?
But, even when I’m doing something like planning out my editorial calendar for my blog; I can reward myself and treat myself just a little.
As a general rule of thumb, I try to watch what I eat. Do I adhere to a strict diet? Absolutely not. But I also know that it’s okay to treat myself every so often. And one of my new favorite ways to do this is by having a Betty Crocker™ Sweet Rewards Blondie Bar when I’m working on my editorial calendar for my blog.
It’s something so simple and yet, such a great treat. Something that I think we often overlook because we’re being far too critical of ourselves. And trust me, I’m plenty guilty of this too. Yes, I have a few pounds that I could use or maybe I should be exercising more often. But if I start narrowing in on this, I start to deny myself everything.
And then I overindulge.
But these new Betty Crocker™ Sweet Rewards are just the thing that I need! Even if I’m not taking a full break, I’m still indulging myself enough and treating myself enough. I’m taking a break from that nagging voice in the back of my head, and I’m performing a little act of self-care.
So where can you get your hands on these delicious treats? I found mine at my local Walmart, right in the Breakfast aisle.
Now, if you’re in need of some more ideas and want to indulge in a little pampering at home, try some of these self care ideas:
- Milk bath
- Lavender aromatherapy bath
- Lavender foot soak (my favorite!)
- Lavender scented massage
- Lavender bath salts
I have a free printable list of simple recipes using items to create your own mini-pampering session at home.
>>> Download here <<<<
What other ideas or tips would you share for self-care for moms? How do you reward yourself?