From the time your kids are born they become a top priority in your life. You’re so busy running around trying to make sure that they’re happy and healthy that your own health and wellness take a back seat. You lose sleep, skip meals, stop exercising, neglect your personal interests, and you do all of this without ever taking a break. Unless you have some sort of superpowers, continuing this pattern for 18 years or more will certainly lead to your demise.
How can caring for your kids and putting your own needs on the back burner lead to your demise?
If you’re not eating right, you’re not giving your body the proper nutrients it needs to sustain the tasks of the day. If you’re not exercising, you’re putting yourself at risk for a number of life-threatening diseases. If you’re not pursuing your passions and interests, you eventually develop resentment and harm your mental health. If you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re not providing your body the time it needs to naturally heal and replenish.
Self-Care is a Must. Not a Luxury.
There is this large misconception that putting yourself first or making time each day to tend to your own needs is a luxury. It’s something that only women with lots of money, plenty of time, and perhaps a nanny can do. The reality is, however, that self-care is a necessity. It does not have to take much time or money and can be incorporated into your life in a manner that doesn’t take away from your family, but that adds to it.
Think about it. When you take care of your health and wellness, you are essentially a better person. When you’re feeding your mind and body right, fueling those passions, and getting the rest you need, you’re in a better position physically and mentally to be there for those you love the most. A happier you means a better mom.
How to Incorporate Self-Care Into Your Life
So, now that you realize the importance of taking care of yourself first, how do you incorporate self-care practices into your already busy lifestyle? Here are some suggestions below:
Meditate 5 Minutes Each Morning
Meditation is a form of self-care that all mothers can benefit from. It helps to relieve feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. Meditation allows you to declutter the mind and refocus on what really matters. While you may not have a lot of time in your schedule, just five minutes of uninterrupted meditation can make a huge difference in your mindset each day. So, wake up just 5 minutes earlier in the morning, find a quiet place, turn off all distractions, set the mood, and meditate.
Take Supplements Daily
Though eating three square meals a day is recommended for optimal health, you still may not be giving your mind and body the nutrients, minerals, and vitamins required to function properly. This leads to everything from weight issues and a lack of energy to anxiety and depression. A quick self-care tip to incorporate into your day is to take supplements regularly. Beyond a multivitamin, look into other health supplements that can help fuel your body. For example, adaptogen supplements can help to boost your energy and increase focus. Herbal supplements are ideal for boosting your mood and even treating or soothing symptoms of preexisting medical conditions.
Exercise Whenever You Can
Not all moms have the time to head to the gym and workout for an hour. Quite frankly, not all moms are interested in going to the gym. However, exercise is necessary for both the mind and body. It helps to reduce stress hormones, flush toxins, regulate weight, build strong muscles and bones, reduce your risk of life-threatening illnesses, and boost your confidence. So, try exercising whenever you can. Park further away from your office and walk to work, take the stairs instead of the elevator, take the kids and run around the park for a few minutes, go for a walk outdoors on your lunch break, or dance around the house while you’re doing chores.
Pursue Your Passions
Don’t get so caught up in life and the responsibilities of parenting that you forget about your own peace and happiness. You were someone with a life, interests, and dreams before your children came into the world. Continue to seek those. Meet up with your friends once a month for brunch, a night out on the town, or a day at the spa. If you love the arts, take a class in painting or sculpting. Take up dance classes, join a community group that supports a cause you’re passionate about, go back to school to obtain a degree, or try an online course in an area of self-development. No matter what, keep pursuing your passions.
Self-care isn’t a luxury. It isn’t being selfish. It also doesn’t make you a bad parent. Prioritizing your own health and wellness actually makes you a better mom. When you’re fueling your mind and body, doing things that make you smile, and allowing yourself to rest, you are putting yourself in a position to mentally and physically handle everything that moms are expected to on a daily basis.