When was the last time you took even 15 minutes to “check out” and recharge? Moms manage so many things and often times are in need of a little taking care of, of their own. If you are a busy mom, you really need to take time to value yourself and schedule personal time.
You might think you simply can’t fit another thing in. You’re so busy taking care of the day to day issues it’s easy to put off self-care but, it’s vitally important. What happens to your car if you don’t take it in for schedule maintenance? Problems start popping up. First it might be something simple like running out of windshield fluid. The next thing you know you have a flat tire, then the motor is acting up, and before you know it, the car stops running. The same happens to us. Physical and emotional issues can develop when you don’t take the time to care for your well-being.
By caring for yourself you will be better able to meet the needs of your family. Whatever you do, don’t be ashamed to sit for fifteen minutes doing nothing. Relaxing in a hammock, reading a book in solitude, or taking an extra-long shower or bath can be enough to recharge you.
Here are 10 ideas to help you fit in much needed “mom” time:
1. Get up early if you have to. You know as soon as the kids are awake there’s no slowing down. Waking up 30 minutes to an hour ahead of everyone else, means quiet solitude to drink your coffee, read a book, or listen to music.
2. Make ordinary experiences special. You don’t have to get away to a spa to enjoy a special experience. When you draw a bath, add candles, some special bubble bath, and quiet music. Your regular bath has now been upgraded! If your downtime is watching a movie, turn down the lights, make a special treat and enjoy a theatre experience from your couch.
3. Ask for help. You might feel like you need to do everything but kids can get a lot of benefit from spending time with other important people in their lives like dads, grandparents, or aunts and uncles. Let them share special time together while you are free to do other things. Just make sure you use some of that time to focus on things you enjoy like a craft project or taking a long walk.
4. Be Prepared. If you prepare ahead of time you’ll feel less stressed in the moment. Some ways you can do this are by packing lunches the night before school/work, picking out clothing for the next day before bed, or pre-cutting ingredients for dinner ahead of time. The more you can prepare the easier things will flow.
5. Exercise! For most people, the last thing they want to do when they have a few moments of time is to exercise. But not only will it help you become more physically fit it can also help clear your mind, and release stress.
6. Don’t Forget to Laugh. Something as simple as watching a funny video or keeping a calendar of funny jokes on your table or desk can brighten up your day. Laughing releases stress and can break up a difficult day.
7. Rest. Getting adequate rest is so important to your overall well-being. If you have little ones at home naptime is often seen as a time to get things done. Instead, consider using the time to take a small nap yourself. Or, use the time to do something else you enjoy that is not housework. It may seem counterintuitive but in the long run you’ll feel better.
8. Reflection. Light a candle and spend a few moments in a quiet space. Journaling, drawing, or meditating are a few ways to work through any feelings you have, release anything that’s been building up, or explore thoughts you have during the day.
9. Say yes, instead of no. How often do you pass up something you’d like, say a magazine or a new scarf, with the thought you could find it elsewhere or you don’t really need it. Every now and then say yes and treat yourself! It’s amazing how far a new magazine and tube of lip gloss can go to improving your day.
10. Listen to some music. Music is a great way to boost your mood. Next time you’re doing the dishes, plug in some earphones and enjoy a few songs or listen to a podcast.
These are just a few small ways you can add some relaxation to your life. What are some of your favorite ways to take a mom “time out?”