How to Self Care for Busy Moms
*contains affiliate links*
We all know that we should take care of ourselves. So, we put it on the list of things that is expected of us…things to do…one more thing to work on. Allowing self care, which is something that is supposed to build us up, to turn into another thing that we “aren’t doing right.” Hello – more guilt.
First, let’s talk about the importance of self care. Then, let’s get practical with ways to “fill our cup,” and how to recognize our individual self care needs.
How to Self Care for the Busy Mom – Why it’s important?
We are all responsible for someone. We have people that need us. That can be a spouse, children…a handful of children, parents, home, job, church….something. Maintaining that constant list of needs and to-dos can be draining. So, what can we do about it?
When we pour ourselves out continuously – day in and day out – without filling ourselves, we can become bitter, resentful, discontented, anxious, and lose our joy.
That is not the life we want to live. Am I right? Self care for the busy mom is charging yourself while you’re serving your family.
If you are not full and charged, you start losing your ability to live your life well. Your family and work notice the far off look on your face. The mouth that doesn’t turn up into a smile as often. A frantic running around mother. One that may lose her temper a little bit sooner. Less laughter, more shuffling from thing to thing.
When the batteries in our remote need to be changed you have to hit it a couple of times to work. Likewise, we can give ourselves a kick in the pants along with a pep talk to get us moving sometimes. We can force ourselves to get working…right? However, we are not fixing the problem. If we are not taking time to refresh our batteries…our energy level…our joy…rest…it comes to a point where no matter how many times we hit that remote, it isn’t going to work.
When I start to feel weighed down, overwhelmed, and just want to be left alone, I know that my soul is calling for some additional quiet self-care time.
Joy is contagious. Fill yourself with the joy and rest you need and spread it to your family. They will notice. I promise. And you will start to enjoy your everyday life with it’s repeating everyday needs.
How to Self Care for the Busy Mom – The Basics
You can start these today….right now for a quick pick me up.
There are a few things that we all need to feel alive and human.
1 – Shower
• I don’t wash my hair everyday, but a daily shower is a must for me. In my mind, my day doesn’t start until after I have a shower. I just don’t feel good until I take a shower. Sometimes it’s just a quick rinse because the baby is fussing, but it still makes my day better.
2 – Quiet Time
• 5 minutes of quiet time can be a game changer.
3 – Hot cup of coffee or tea
Isn’t there something magical about those first few sips of something warm and tasty? Take a couple of minutes to really enjoy those first sips. Taking pleasure in the little things adds to your self care bucket in a big way.
How to Self Care for the Busy Mom – 4 Things to Help you Get Started
1 – Identify how you are feeling.
• If you are feeling overwhelmed and exhausted, your self care needs are most likely different than if you are feeling bored and antsy.
• For Example: If you’re overwhelmed and exhausted, you may want some quiet alone time. Leaving your kids at home and being around people may only drain you more. Whereas, if you are feeling bored and antsy, you may most enjoy hanging out with some girl friends. Maybe what you need is to talk to some adults without interruption and some laughter…lots of laughter.
2 – What brings you Joy?
• There are many self care lists out there that can help give you ideas, but it’s important to remember we are all different. What brings you joy, may not bring me joy.
• For instance – My husband is a full blown extrovert. He loves going places, hanging out, meeting new people. It energizes him and fills his cup. I have to mentally prepare myself to go hang out with people. Sometimes, even people I love. I’m very introverted. When I go places and hang out with people, it depletes me. Even if I have fun. I very rarely can relax in social situations.
• What are your interests?
• Reading. Taking a walk. Watching a Movie. Shopping. Trying a new restaurant. Hobbies? Crochet. Drawing. Writing.
• Take a few minutes to think about the things that bring you the most joy, but you not get to do that often. Or maybe you’d just like some uninterrupted time to do __________.
3 – Let go of Guilt and Expectations.
• Sometimes it’s better to get out of the house, if you can. Why? Because your home to-do list isn’t nagging you while you are trying to relax.
• When you take time to yourself, let go of all guilt and outside expectations.
• Whether the time you have is 5 minutes or a few hours. You are not going to feel anymore filled and energized if all you can think about is the stuff that you “should” be doing. Or if you feel bad for not getting things done on your to-do list. For someone else watching the kids. Or for them to watch an extra show on tv so you can have peace.
• You can’t carry guilt AND build yourself up to be the best for your family at the same time. Choose one. I hope you choose taking care of yourself. Your family will thank you.
4 – Mix in daily self care and extra self care.
• The most important things to include in your self care routine are the small daily things. Remember those small moments of joy or reflection can make a huge difference when they are done regularly.
• Scheduling and planning for extra time for bigger acts of self care is also important. What do I mean here? When you’re away from the house for atleast 3-4 hours.
• Recently, I found myself feeling overwhelmed and worn out despite my daily acts of self care. I wanted to break away for a while outside of the house. Most of our daily acts of self care, we are still at home. Our children are there, they just may be asleep, or watching a movie…but they’re there, which means you’re still on duty.
• I was yearning for some true off duty time outside of the house. So, my sister watched the girls for about 4 hours, and I did whatever I wanted during that time.
• Knowing that I needed time to recharge my introverted self, I was all alone for those hours, and it was bliss.
• I came close to sabotaging my time by trying to plan it all out and create a “I have time to get this and this done” list. Instead, I came up with ideas of things to do, if I felt like it, but I released any expectation of getting something done. Nothing like ruining your self care time by putting self imposed expectations on that time. lol.
• How to Self Care – My day:
• Walked around a park, then sat on a swing. I spent this time trying to relax and clear my mind. Ahh.
• Read a couple chapters of a new book sitting in the sun at the park. I love the feeling of the sun hitting my face (when it’s not a thousand degrees)
• Spent some time working on my Life Plan. I didn’t get it finished, but I really enjoy planning.
• Got ice cream from my favorite frozen yogurt place where you can add lots of toppings. Yummm…
• Goodwill book shopping. Our Goodwill has some great books. Normally, looking for books there is very stressful, because the baby gets tired of sitting in the buggy and my kindergartener is wanting to play on the exercise equipment next to the books. So, I went to Goodwill and put my hands on the spine of every book. 🙂 Then I looked up and an hour had passed. I took my load to the register and the total was a bit of a surprise. Who knew you could spend over $60 on Goodwill books? Have I confessed my book problem? lol.
• That was my day of bliss. It was just what I needed. I had a new energy and joy for life’s everyday demands.
Take some time and think on these 4 things to help you with how to self care. Next, I’m going to share with you 10 daily self care ideas for moms.
What’s your favorite thing to do when you get time to yourself?
I’m curious….Do you want to be alone? Or with friends?
Take care of yourself mama. You’re worth it! Your family will thank you!
CHECK OUT THESE POSTS