Self-care. What does that mean to you? How do you practice it–do you practice it?
Motherhood has forced me to reevaluate the importance of self-care, and while I often fall short in the consistency part of this practice, I always come back to how I can find ways to re-incorporate it in to my busy life. It all boils back down to the idea that you can’t give away what you don’t have, so if I am not taking care of myself properly, I wind up running on fumes, and become pretty useless to those around me, (especially my family).
I decided to keep a list of small, practical and quick ways that I can practice self-care in my daily life, and I have decided to share these ideas with you:
Podcasts and Inspirational Talks
I know what you might be thinking; I don’t have time to listen to an entire podcast or talk. I get it, believe me I do. Time is a fleeting thing, but that is what the ‘pause’ button is for. Sometimes I turn on a podcast, listen to 5 minutes of it while getting dressed or slapping on mascara, and pause it for later when I find another little window of time. It’s a great feel-good fix!
Do a Face Mask
I love a face mask. It’s like a mini spa treatment, and it literally takes 5-10 minutes. Try it at night or at nap-time.
Sometimes something as simple as stretching my body for 5-10 minutes, makes me feel grounded and connected to myself.
Dance it OUT!
Put on your favorite Pandora or Spotify station, and let your body move to the music however it wants! Talk about a quick mood-fixer. Our bodies were meant to move, and listening to music that makes you want to move will lift your vibration and spirit every single time, without fail.
Diffuse Essential Oils
Every heard of aromatherapy? It’s a real thing. Have you ever gone to get a massage, and immediately upon entering you find yourself more relaxed? I can almost guarantee that they are diffusing lavender, which has a naturally relaxing effect. Diffuse something that smells delicious to you, and watch your mood shift.
Ok, so if there is one area that I have struggled with consistency since having kids, it is this. I was a daily gym-goer pre-babies; a gym-rat, even. But you don’t have to go to, or belong to a gym to exercise. There are so many apps, and free online workouts and yoga; (not to mention the great outdoors!) Exercising releases endorphins, which are natural feel-good hormones!
Paint Your Nails
Maybe you’re like me, and don’t really have (or make) the time to get your nails done. That’s ok! Buy a color you love, and when the kids go to bed, paint them yourself! I love looking down and seeing a pretty color on my nails.
Sometimes I just want some alone-time–in fact, I often crave this most. However, this isn’t always realistic in my daily mom-life. Taking a 5 minute break, where I can just breathe intentionally and refocus my thinking really helps me feel more centered.
Call a Friend
They don’t call it a lifeline for nothin’. Texting is great–it serves a purpose, and allows us to multi-task. But nothing can replace human connection, and having an actual conversation with another adult, is often my saving grace amidst the daily chaos.
I love the effects produced by meditating, however, I am not great at sitting still in the Buddha position, in the stark quiet. My head gets the best of me. Guided meditations, are awesome because someone is literally guiding your thoughts. There are a ton of apps for this, or a quick YouTube search will get you what you’re looking for.
Whiten Your Teeth
This may sound silly, but doing a teeth whitening kit, can actually be relaxing and it will brighten up your smile in the process, (not to mention it helps with late-night snacking) .
Some days feel never ending, and even overwhelming. Just know this; you are not alone. If you can’t seem to find even a few minutes for yourself, take a few very deep and intentional breaths. This can help to reset your central nervous system, and helps you tap in to the present moment.
I hope you have found some of this helpful, and I hope you will also join me in the quest to practice just a little more self care every day, because hey! We deserve it. If you have other tips, tricks or practices, I would love to hear what they are–I am always looking for new ideas!