Mothering is hard - there is no doubt about that. However in the hustle and bustle of feeding, clothing, changing, picking up from school, and managing a household with your partner, it’s easy to see how self care and a little ‘me time’ can fall through the cracks. Personally, although I’m not a mother myself, I’ll be the first to agree that out of all of us it’s truly the mums out there who deserve the most self care of us all. Considering how much you all give to your children, your partner and the rest of your family or community. It’s the lack of time though, that seems to push self care out of our schedules. There simply doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to fit it all in. And unfortunately, a relaxing bath just cannot seem to take priority over feeding your child! Click 'Read More' to view the full blog post.
“We all KNOW as parents how important it is to take care of ourselves. When we can stay connected to our own well-being, it overflows onto our children and we're more patient, loving, joyful parents. However, knowing and doing are completely different things.” - mother.ly
We wanted to collate a handful of self care ideas which are quick, easy, effective and rewarding while allowing you to easily implement them into your daily life without dragging more time or energy away. Check them out and let us know which ones you love the most, or share some more ideas in the comments below! We would love to hear from you!
1. Hot/Cold Flannels:
These are super easy to grab and go during the day when you need a little treat or refresh. You can easily prepare them ahead of time too while the kids are at school or the bub is asleep. We make ours by using a glad storage container with a secure lid, then rolling up flannels and placing them inside. Grab some water (preferably distilled) or simply boil the jug and let it cool before you pour. Add enough water into the container to smother the rolled flannels well. We love to put essential oils like lavender, lemon or peppermint into the water. This is honestly our favourite bit and can transform this experience according to the time of day - we love lemon for in the morning, peppermint during the day and lavender in the evening. Store this container securely in the fridge and grab a flannel whenever you need it. These are wonderful warmed in the microwave or cold straight from the fridge. Trust us, this is such a treat and we honestly look forward to it every day.
2. Learn to Say No!
There is that image of a ‘perfect mum’ that we all think we’ll be able to keep up with. However in reality, that’s the one thing that will prevent you from actually managing to be successful. What you can cope with, as one mumma is completely different to what another mumma will be able to manage. So never judge how you are able to cope with your workload. As you’ll understand especially if you have more than one child, each baby is so beyond different so as will the requirements of being their parent be different. Sometimes I look at mum’s around me and realise that they put so much pressure on themselves to keep up with the world or maintain this perfect image, when really they’re doing the hardest job out there anyway. Give yourself a break from all the comparisons, and judging your parenting style - trust me, there are plenty of people in the world who’ll do that for you. So be proud of yourself for your tremendous achievements without feeling like you have to add more into your already busy life. Learn how to say no to draining jobs, difficult people and negative experiences. Learn how to delegate the tasks you don’t like doing to people who do like doing them. I heard one story about how a mum hated making her children’s lunches, and how her daughter always came home from school commenting on how amazing her friend’s lunches were. Without feeling like a failure or beating herself up, this mum simply tracked down the ‘parent who made amazing lunches’ and they made up a deal. One mother would make the lunches for both children, while the other would cook a meal which would last well in the freezer or throughout the week. It was the perfect trade which left both of them feeling amazing and accomplished, rather than draining them by doing tasks that didn’t bring them joy.
3. Encourage Social Interactions:
There is nothing worse than feeling alone and isolated, especially when you’re feeling overwhelmed and stressed. Find people in your community or your family who bring joy and relief into your life rather than being draining by their presence. These kind of people are amazing listeners and would rather hear your story out before sharing their own. Create opportunities to spend time with people like this, whether you join a support group together, go for coffee, meet at the library or go for a walk at the lake. Socialisation is an amazing way to allow yourself to vent, bring the outer world back in and get someone else’s trusted perspective of how things are going.
4. Bring Back Sleep Hygiene!
I know some of you might read this and be thinking, ‘sleep hygiene, god this woman clearly hasn’t had a child’ and those of you would be right. However what all mothers will recognise is that there is a very particular routine which you take your child through to settle them into sleep. There’s a process, which you know enables them to sleep ore consistently, without interruption or fuss. The funny thing is, that usually once the baby is asleep, parents either stay up late cramming in as much time for themselves as they possibly can (and why wouldn’t you) or flop into bed without any thought. We seem to have lot somewhere the process and routine to prepare ourselves for sleep which we are so particular on when it comes to our children. I’m not saying this needs to be anything fussy and particular. But rather just a conscious process which reminds your body that it’s time for sleep. Much like for your children, it’s this process that will ensure that you sleep (however limited) will still be rewarding and fulfilling. Check out our full blog post about sleep here.
5. Keep up with your Appointments:
Your health, besides your child’s, needs to be of the highest importance. No longer are you just caring for yourself, but someone else too, which means that it’s more important than ever for you to look after yourself and look out for any possible health issues as early as possible. While it may seem fussy, don’t cancel your regular doctor, dentist or gynaecologist checkups. Also, if you’re at all concerning about anything, at least reach out to a friend or a family member to just get a second opinion. It’s easy, when you’re busy, to try to knock as many things out of your calendar as possible to keep sane. But this is something that’s of too much importance (for both you and your child’s sake) to ignore.
6. Get Rid of Clothes That Don’t Fit:
Be happy, content and grateful for your body and where it is in the moment. Don’t cause yourself unnecessary stress by holding out on old clothing items with a dream to fit back into them. If it’s not your priority or bringing you joy or motivation, then this is your official invitation to let them go. I find that clothing which I don’t currently fit is only ever kept in my wardrobe for the wrong reasons - whether that’s because it’s holding a past memory, it’s something I wish to get back in to, or because they fit a style which I’m enjoying. However keeping these clothes in your wardrobe which don’t fit you can create an underlying pressure or feeling that you don’t quite fit either. Nobody needs that sort of self-doubt in your life. Give yourself a sigh of relief and become content with the stage you’re at currently, without giving yourself any pressure to conform back into the clothes you used to wear - you’re a different person now with completely different priorities.
We hope this gives you some easy, rewarding and fulfilling ideas to incorporate into your day! Let us know your other ideas or tips in the comment section below.
From our home to yours,
Hi there! Thanks for checking out the Live Lively blog. I am so excited to share my passion for productivity, personal growth and wellbeing!