Sometimes as hard-working women, we need a reminder to take care of ourselves. I’m here to give you that reminder. We work so hard on a continual basis making sure everyone else is taking care of that we allow ourselves to become run-down, stressed out, overwhelmed, and worn out.
Why do we feel guilty for taking alone time just for ourselves? I’m not sure. But it has to stop.
Make yourself a priority once in a while. It’s not selfish – it’s a necessity.
Every year, I make an annual trip to the spa. I get the works – the massage, the sauna, and finish my spa trip with a full body scrub. Although this is my favorite self-care ritual, I suggest practicing self-care on a daily basis. Don’t just save pampering yourself for holidays; make time for a refresh and a reset as often as you need to.
By practicing self-care daily, it helps me to keep my sanity in the daily chaos of life. After everyone is asleep for the night, I like to stay up a few hours for “me time.” I read a book, watch a movie, or take a hot bubble bath. Making myself a priority each day for those few hours makes a big difference in how I have learned to value myself. My husband and kids appreciate the time I take by myself to relax and unwind, because it puts me in a better mood overall. Sometimes when I seem overwhelmed or frustrated, the kids will ask me, “Mommy, do you need alone time?” – and at that moment I retreat to my “time out space”. After all, who wants to deal with a cranky, fussy, mama? No one.
The 30 Minute Rule:
No matter how busy you are, take a half-hour each day just for yourself.
As a stay-at-home work-from-home Mom, I understand the importance of getting out on your own every now and then, but that option is not always available for everyone, making the daily self-care thing a little harder. For those of you who have little ones tagging along throughout the day, try to find time for yourself when they are asleep, busy eating, or when they are occupied with their toys or playing with their siblings. Every moment counts. Some of my best alone time comes when my kids are quietly watching their tablets (judge me!) Your “pamper me” day doesn’t have to cost you a lot, and you don’t have to do anything super fancy. Honestly less is more, and the main focus is that you get to do something that you enjoy to de-stress.
Whether you take a few hours or an entire weekend to yourself, it is best to use wisdom when deciding what to do to pamper yourself. My older children are ages 5 and 7, and when home with Daddy they have learned to be a little more self-sufficient without me. With that being said, I don’t feel guilty leaving them with hubby for the day while I go spend a “girls day” out.
A few years ago when they were a newborn and a toddler, I would have probably just taken a walk around the mall for an hour or two instead of jetting off for the entire day. When choosing how to pamper yourself and for how long, use common sense and be sure to choose what works best for your family. There is nothing worse than spending an entire day of fun and relaxation and coming home to a destroyed home, cranky babies, and an upset husband.
If it makes you feel beautiful, confident, happy it is never a waste of time.
Your mind and body will give you clear signs when you are overdue for a self-care session. Here are a few of those signs:
- You wake up mad or sad
- You dread getting out of the bed in the morning
- You are irritable and cranky throughout the day
- You always seem angry at your husband and children
- You are highly sensitive and everything gets on your nerves
- You are always tired (even after a full night of sleep)
- You’ve started to gain or lose excessive weight from stress
- Nothing seems to make you happy anymore
These physical signs may point to depression (if you think you are depressed, please seek help asap), or they may just be the physical manifestation of you needing to take a break. When overworked and overwhelmed, our brains start to send us signs to let us know that things are not OK. In these instances, it is imperative that we pay attention to our bodies.
Many times as moms we fall into a slump of boredom from doing the same mundane tasks each day or stress from the loads of responsibility that come with taking care of a home and the children. I know many women who work a day-job simply because they don’t want the stress of caring for their kids 24/7. So many of us struggle with stress, anger, and low-self esteem on a daily basis, when these things can be prevented if we just learn how to take care of ourselves properly.
Self-care is an ongoing process and should be done daily – especially if you have children. Daily. Your home, husband, and your children will all survive if you decide to take a nap or go to bed early. Your mental health and well-being are at stake if you don’t take your self-care seriously.
25 Simple Ways To De-stress and Pamper Yourself for under $25
- Take a nap
- Put on your headphones and jam to your favorite playlist
- Buy new nail polish and do your own manicure and pedicure at home
- Go for a walk or run
- Make a homemade body scrub (or try this one!) and exfoliate your entire body
- Take a hot bubble bath
- Make your own facial mask at home
- Try something new with your hair
- Go see a movie (don’t forget the popcorn and drink!)
- Binge on Netflix or Hulu (thank God for live streaming!)
- Go to your local plant nursery and buy a bouquet of fresh flowers
- Go window shopping at your favorite mall or shopping center
- Splurge on a new lipstick you’ve been wanting to try
- Turn off your phone and get lost in a book
- Go bike riding in the park
- Go to a museum
- People watch in the park
- Go to your favorite restaurant and treat yourself to lunch
- Have a coffee date with one of your friends (or alone!)
- Get in your car and go for a drive while listening to your favorite songs
- Go to a local gym and get in a hard workout
- Buy your favorite flavor of ice cream, THEN EAT IT
- Bake your favorite cookies or cake, THEN EAT IT
- Take a nap
- Do something new for the first time
Do me a favor and start abiding by the 30-minute rule (no matter how busy you are, take a half-hour each day just for yourself). Don’t let yourself become stressed out or overwhelmed, but instead, ask for help when you need it. Hire a sitter when you need to. Take a break, pamper yourself, and enjoy every second of it.
What do you do to relax and unwind? Share in the comments below!