When you’re a mom, you understand how draining motherhood is.
You focus all of your attention on taking care of your children that you forget to take care of yourself.
The challenge, however, is finding time to do so.
It’s easy to disregard self care because so many things have to be done first.
The thing is, unless you make self care a priority, having the time for yourself will never happen.
You need to make the time for self care because you will never have more time.
I know this may seem impossible but, with these 7 secrets, you’ll easily find the time to take care of yourself:
1. Start Small
One mistake I think most mothers make is thinking that self care has to be an extravagant affair that involves hour-long trips to the gym or a half-day at a spa.
Self care only requires activities that nourish you, whether they take an hour or five minutes.
The more quick and easy self care activities you can find that make you feel replenished and relaxed, the easier it will be to fit these into your busy schedule.
If you love to practice yoga, you can find a five minute routine that will give you a full body stretch. Even taking a few deep breaths throughout the day is a calming and healthy activity.
As you begin to make self care a priority in your life, and find the time to do it, you can begin to lengthen the activities or incorporate new ones.
2. Stay Up Late or Get Up Early
I take full advantage of the time when my daughter goes to bed and the moments I’m awake before she is to find my “me time”.
I’ll admit that it’s challenging, since I love going to bed early and waking up late.
If you’re like me, and neither a night owl nor an early bird, setting your alarm even 5 minutes earlier in the morning is a huge step toward finding time for yourself.
Mom life is a busy life and the only real respite you get is when your little one is sleeping. Use this time to partake in the self care activities you enjoy.
3. Ask for Help
You’re probably familiar with the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child.”
You may be the only mother to your child but you can’t do it alone. Unfortunately, this village doesn’t come knocking on your door.
You have to reach out and ask for help. There is no shame in leaning on your support system to watch your child so you can have time to yourself.
One great way to do this is to turn to your mom tribe. Only they can fully empathize with your need to take care of yourself.
You can organize a system with your tribe to watch each other’s children. Even if it’s for an hour during a play date, this is a great way to both find the time for self care and expand your self care activities.
4. Manage Your Time
As a mom, your time is valuable. There are only so many hours in a day and so much you are responsible for getting done.
Finding extra time is all about time management. It’s about streamlining your responsibilities to create free time for yourself.
You can get your children involved in chores or try multitasking your responsibilities to complete more of them in a shorter amount of time.
For instance, I wash my dishes as supper cooks. Whatever dishes end up in the sink from that meal time get done the next day as I cook.
5. Define Your Self Care
Self care doesn’t necessarily have to be warm baths, meditation and journaling (although these are all amazing ways to take care of yourself). The key to self care is finding what works for you – not what works for everyone else.
Self care includes whatever activities you enjoy that take care of your mind, body and soul.
Think of the things that you love to do that fills you up and leaves you feeling refreshed. These are the activities you should focus on in your self care routine.
6. Create a Self Care Routine
When you create a routine, you create habits. Once something becomes a habit, it’ll become second-nature in your day-to-day life.
Make self care a daily, weekly or monthly habit.
Schedule it into your life as you would an appointment. Personally, taking baths is a huge self care activity for me. I started having baths every Sunday and it easily became a routine. Now, I automatically have a bath Sunday evenings without even really thinking about it.
Because self care is crucial in maintaining overall health, it’s important for moms to practice it regularly. Grab a calendar and pencil in your self care!
7. Take Advantage of Time Pockets
Time pockets are those short little periods of time where you have a moment to yourself.
This may be during your lunch break at work or when your little ones goes down for a nap.
You may be tempted to engage in productive activities during these times but, honestly, those can wait. You can use these precious periods of time to indulge in some self care.
Remember that self care activities do not have be grandiose affairs that take up huge chunks of your time. They can be quick yet powerful things like going for a walk or reading a book.
Your Self Care Can Start Right Now!
Pick one thing you can do for yourself today – and do it!
You can’t pour from an empty cup and you can’t continue to be the amazing mother you are if you don’t take care of the amazing person you are first.
How are you going to take care of yourself today?