It’s a hot topic of the moment that I read and hear about constantly. It’s something that all of us mamas need, and probably something we all don’t get enough of. One thing that is not consistent when I hear about this topic is what it is. That’s because Self-Care is NOT one size fits all, it’s different for each and every mom. What’s relaxing for one mom might be anxiety-inducing for another.
Self- care for a lot of women is beauty related, as they enjoy the time getting to feel pampered for a few hours. If that is what makes you feel good, DO IT! I do get my hair done, but it’s mostly out of necessity because my home dye jobs can turn into a hot mess! Sometimes it is just hard to sit still getting pampered without turning my mind off. I try to relax, but that just doesn’t come easy to me.
So, what do I consider self-care? It’s similar in the fact that it revolves around taking time for ME, and turning off that 24/7 mom mode I’m always in.
Time with Friends
For me, I’m starting to realize that the best type of self-care revolves around getting out with my friends. This is something that I think is important for all moms, and something I’ve been struggling with not being able to do lately.
Two of my closest friends each live a few hours away, but when we get together for girl’s nights, it does wonders for me. Initially, I felt some mom guilt spending the night away from my kiddo, but I’ve started to realize how necessary these nights are. These nights allow me to reconnect with my best friends and have some much-needed time for me.
One of the other things I look most forward to every month is the small book club I am a part of. Reading has always been my favorite hobby, so this probably isn’t surprising to anyone. I love this time that is dedicated to one of my favorite things, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that we typically meet at the local wine bar!
Time to Myself
Sometimes self-care is just having me time. Time to myself. My favorite thing to do is probably shopping, even if I’m just window shopping. When I get the chance to browse stores (hello Target and Home Goods!) by myself without any meltdowns over toys or having to dole out snacks, I treasure the time. My husband has probably begun to realize that often when I get the chance to do this, I take a lot longer than I think I’ll be because the time flies!
I also enjoy the time I get to exercise and consider it some of my most important self-care. I’m not hardcore by any means, I usually just go for a walk or use our elliptical. I found that doing this has really helped me manage stress, so taking the time to do it is important.
Now I’ll be honest, I don’t get to work out by myself, my daughter is still usually around. This is where kids YouTube comes into play. Her tablet used to just be reserved for when we were out to dinner or long waits, but I changed that rule. I think most moms will agree, sometimes you do what you have to do to make things work for you. DON’T feel guilty about this! As she gets older, maybe she can join in with me, but for now, the tablet does the job!
Getting out of my comfort zone
So, what’s the point of this whole article anyway? Part of why I decided to write an article on self-care is to give other moms permission to take care of themselves. It’s easy to get caught up in family life without taking care of yourself. I know this is easier said than done, but you will be a better parent in the long run if you take care of yourself. Also, don’t forget who you are as a person outside of being a mama; find something that is just for you!
The other reason for this article? Sometimes getting the most out of “me-time” may mean getting out of your comfort zone. I’m an introvert and often get social anxiety in new situations. I know I’m not alone in this. If this is you, I HIGHLY recommend considering joining a group. Joining Toledo Moms, book club, bunco group, etc. has forced me to get out and socialize. Before this, I often saw moms getting together for playdates and outings, and I’d put “maybe” to attending, and wouldn’t show up. I was just too nervous to put myself out there, and if I didn’t join a group and make a commitment, I’d still probably be doing the same thing.
No matter what it is that makes you feel good, I encourage all of you moms to try to take care of yourself and do something today that is just for you. You deserve it!