Why is it that when you become a mom, finding time to take care of yourself seems impossible?
I remember a time after college when I would read 11-12 books a week! I would go out to eat whenever I wanted to, go shopping, or even take a road trip somewhere. I still love to read. I enjoy listening to music and seeing good art. All those things I loved pre-mommyhood I still love. But in this season of little ones, most of the things I love have been put on the back burner.
Can you relate?
As moms, we willingly lay down different parts of ourselves to better serve our families. The danger in that is when we never pick those things back up again. You are still an individual and it’s important to continue to do the things you enjoy. This is even more important when the hard times come. It’s those things that will help you stay sane and find peace in spite of hurt and chaos.
5 Keys to Finding Time to Take Care of Yourself
Over the years I’ve learned that if I’m going to make self-care a priority I have to be intentional. I cannot wait for the time to suddenly become available, I have to carve out time for myself. It’s not always easy but when I get those moments to myself I’m a better woman and mom.
If you are struggling with finding time to take care of yourself, try a few of these tips:
#1 – Put it on the schedule.
This is my number one tip when someone tells me they just don’t have time for something. The key to time-management is making sure that you are putting those important things on your calendar first and then working everything else around them.
You are important; be sure to put yourself on the calendar.
#2 – Turn off the TV.
I’m not going to bore you with statistics about screen time and productivity. We tend to watch a ton of television these days. I have fallen into the black hole of Netflix many times when I really needed to get some work done or rest. The same goes for the phone, iPad, and any other device that steals our attention.
If you gave up one night a week of TV, that’s an hour you can have all to yourself.
#3 – Involve the kids.
When I decided to work on finding time to exercise, the thing that really helped was including my boys. Going for walks, bike rides, and hikes through the nature park have become my favorite ways to get moving and stay healthy. It also sets a good example for your kids about taking care of yourself.
It’s good for them to understand that it’s important for mommy to take time for herself.
#4 – 5 minutes at a time.
The perfectionist in me tends to be all or nothing! That’s not a good idea when it comes to making time for yourself. If you never pick up that book to read because you don’t have hours to read the entire thing in one sitting, you will get nowhere. Work your favorite things into the small spaces of your day.
5 or 10 minutes every day will eventually add up!
#5 – Go easy on yourself
Yes, it’s important to take care of yourself. But please don’t stress out over taking care of yourself. Give yourself plenty of grace. Set a goal; create a plan and stick to it the best you can.
LaToya, Women Finding God