As mothers, we women often find ourselves spending all of our time caring for others and not enough time caring for ourselves. I know I am guilty of this, and usually it’s my own fault… getting wrapped up in my long to-do list and letting my calendar get overrun with family things too often means forgetting to make time for myself.
BUT, self-care doesn’t have to be so hard. Here are my five tips for self-care basics:
…Or whatever meal you tend to leave out of your day. All too often, busy moms skip meals, leaving ourselves exhausted and drained of the vital mental and physical energy needed to respond to our little ones. Take time to prep a nutritious breakfast the night before, with fiber to keep you full (and cleanse your gut) and protein for long-lasting energy. Avoid processed grains like bagels, muffins, or your child’s leftover cereal. Suggestions include quinoa, oatmeal, or eggs with steamed veggies or fruit.
Schedule Time Off:
Everyone needs “me time.” This can be 5 minutes or a whole day, but you need time to recharge. Try to avoid discussing/thinking about the kids. Take a walk, a long bath, go for coffee with friends (or a good book), or date night with your partner. Aim for once a week, but whenever you can is good, too.
Motherhood can be lonely, but we all need to feel like we are not alone. Getting support from other moms with whom you can discuss fears, struggles, hopes, and successes is necessary.
Sleep deprivation increases your cortisol levels (the stress hormone), which triggers fat storage around your waist, making you feel demoralized on top of increasing your risk of heart disease, cancer, and other conditions. So leave the chores for morning and go to bed!
Give yourself permission to enjoy the little things on a daily basis. Whether it’s splurging on the expensive coffee, nibbling on some dark chocolate, flipping through a gossip magazine, or taking an extra 5 minutes to relax in the shower, find a simple ritual or two that will bring you joy. Motherhood doesn’t have to mean martyrdom.