As one can imagine, being a mother is a never-ending job. A very exhausting, never-ending job. It’s been said many times that moms wear all kinds of hats and are everything from a chef, to chauffeurs, to nurses, to mediators, and everything else in between. It’s no wonder moms are constantly feeling burned-out. And boy is that burn-out real!
Now I’m sure when I say “self-care routine” you immediately think of hours at a spa, hair salon, or getting your nails done. Though that all sounds amazing, – and who wouldn’t want that? – I’m not really referring to these kinds of self-care. Self-care is so much more than just physical pampering. It’s doing things that will fuel your mind, body, and soul.
These things can be different for everyone, but I’ve found a few things that I can easily do on a daily basis. They make a huge difference in how I feel and how I get back to 100% when I’m feeling like I need a 14-hour nap!
Here are 5 self-care habits to practice every day:
1. Wake up before your family does:
Honestly, I can’t even begin to explain how much of a difference this makes. I wake up at least one hour before my husband and daughter wake up. This helps me get my day organized and get a lot done before I start to tend to them. Most importantly, I get some quiet time.
On days when I sleep through my alarm and wake up at the same time as they do, it completely throws my day off. I feel rushed, disorganized, I run late, and my day starts off on the wrong foot. It just isn’t the same.
2. Plan an exercise routine and stick to it:
I don’t mean to spend hours at the gym in one day. Building an exercise routine can be as simple as you’d like it to be. It’s all about finding a way to get your body moving and getting a clear head. You can schedule a 30-minute walk in the morning or in the afternoon or during your lunch break at work. Join a yoga or spin class. Do a quick workout at home or go to the gym if you prefer.
I’m a gym person mainly because even before becoming a mom, I’ve always worked out at a gym. But now that I’m a stay at home mom, it’s also a great way to get out of the house and be in a different environment. Sweating helps me clear my head and feel refreshed.
3. Plan and pack your lunches ahead of time; even if you’re a stay at home mom:
This may sound a bit silly – but I’m telling you – it is so important. As moms, we make sure that our families are well fed. We offer them nutritious and delicious meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We’re snack wizards! Show me a mom that isn’t loaded with snacks at all times!
While we’re making sure our loved ones are getting all the meals they need we often forget to even feed ourselves. Especially when we’re home alone with little ones. Raise your hand if your lunch has ever been your child’s leftovers? Yup we’ve all been there!
Getting nutrient dense meals is also essential for moms. That’s why it’s important that you prepare lunch for yourself too.
I’m a stay at home mom and I pack lunches for my husband and daughter every day. I also like to pack one for myself; especially on days I know I’ll be running errands and getting home in time for lunch. Having a lunch packed in the fridge ready to-go helps me have a well-balanced meal rather than putting something random together.
I use my Bentgo lunchboxes to help me meal prep my families lunches as well as my own. This not only helps me ensure that I’m eating a healthy and nutritious lunch, but also that I’m eating at a reasonable time. I can’t count how many times I’ve wondered why I was so hungry. Then realized it was past 2 pm and never ate lunch. So now I use our lovely Bentgo Fresh Prep Pack to plan my own lunches ahead and make sure I don’t skip a meal.
4. Take a small afternoon break by yourself:
Whether you’re home with the kids or are a working mom, taking a small break in the afternoon can help recharge those batteries immensely. Just taking a quiet 10-15 minute break can make all the difference.
Take advantage of nap time or get up from your desk and go get a coffee or tea. Indulge with a treat while the kids are playing or watching tv. Take a few minutes to go outside and read a book or a magazine.
Keeping your mind away from your to-do list or afternoon tasks can help you feel reenergized. Ready to tackle those afternoon chores, commute, homework, dinner, baths, bedtime and everything in between!
5. Keep a gratitude journal:
I recently started doing this and it has made such a big difference in how I feel on the inside. I’m much less stressed and anxious and I don’t let the little things get to me as much as they used to.
A gratitude journal is simply a journal where you write what you’re grateful for. It’s a way to view things in a positive way and concentrate on the things that you have in your life that make it complete, rather than focusing on what you don’t have or what you wish you had.
I usually take sometime before I go to bed to write in my journal. I write a recap of what I got done in the day no matter how small it may seem. I make notes of what I was grateful for that day, for example, the health of my family and myself, our home, another day to live, etc.
Doing this has helped me greatly since it allows me to see how much I actually do in a day. I typically have a to-do list and a lot of times I can barely get through one item on it. This would give me major anxiety and feel like I failed that day.
Writing the things I did in my journal shows that even if I didn’t finish certain items on my to-do list, it was because other things came up that needed my care. For instance, my daughter woke up sick that day and I took care of her. I’m grateful that I get to be home with her and be there for her when she needs her mom the most. My to-do list can wait until she feels better.
Start with one or a couple of these and make them a habit. To start off, pick one or two of these habits and start practicing them. This will make it less overwhelming at the beginning while you make them part of your daily routine.
Self-care is extremely important and any small way you can incorporate it in your daily life will make a huge difference in your overall health and well-being.
Share self-care with all the other mamas in your life this Mother’s Day
This weekend is Mother’s Day and what better time to start practicing self-care than this special day dedicated to mom.
Share this with the mamas in your life to inspire them to start their own self-care routine. Spread the self-care love and make some time for yourself this weekend. Not just this weekend though. Everyday! Because moms deserve to be celebrated every single day!