The Beginner’s Guide to Self-Care for Moms
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What is Self-Care?
The Oxford Dictionary defines self-care as “the practice of taking care of one’s own needs in order to improve or maintain one’s mental or physical health.”
The reality is, many people are not able to prioritize themselves when they are in survival mode. They are focused on their families, jobs, and other obligations or responsibilities. And while self-care is important for all people, it is especially important for people in a caregiver position including moms.
Many people believe that once you become a mom you no longer need to take care of yourself because your child is the main priority. This couldn’t be any more false. If anything moms needs self-care even more because now there are more expectations on your time and energy levels.
Often, in motherhood, we downsize our own needs and prioritize our families. Yet, if you are feeling down and overwhelmed, it is time to start taking care of yourself again, like before you become a mom.
Why Do I Need to Take Care of Myself?
We are all human beings, and as such, we must take care of ourselves. This includes eating well, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy social life with family and friends, staying on top of our work responsibilities at work.
For the sake of your own mental health, making sure each and every one of your individual needs are met is crucial.
This section is the first introduction to the topic of how to take care of yourself. It briefly outlines what needs to be done in order to take care of oneself.
How To Get Started with Self-Care for Moms
This post is a beginner’s guide to taking care of yourself as a mom. As you read, you will find self-care tips and learn how to take care of yourself, especially if you are a mom.
The Beginner’s Guide to self-care
In this post you will learn the following:
- What is self-care?
- Why self-care is important
As a mom of two boys and a former teacher, I am used to taking care of others. Yet, I was often feeling depleted and at times, a little resentful. I felt after my kids were born, my husband was able to carry on with his life and do what he needed when he wanted.
I was usually with the kids and didn’t even feel like I could go to the store without finding a time and asking. It was a struggle for a while until I started hearing the word “self-care” and decided it was time I started researching this valuable buzzword.
As I read countless books and attended seminars, I realized I was doing it all wrong. In fact, I was not giving myself the tender loving care, I provided for everyone else. From that moment on, I decided to dedicate my life to preaching and practicing self-care for moms (and everyone really!).
We can all find time for ourselves to support interests, hobbies, and pampering. Self-care for moms is not only needed, it is essential for thriving as a mom and being your best self (a version of you, your kids deserve.)
So I decided to start a blog about self-care and share all of my findings with you. Thank you for being here and starting your self-care journey with me.
What is self-care
- Self-care is finding time for yourself to do what you love and are compelled to do to feel whole-hearted, valued and cared for. Self-care means taking care of your needs so you can better care for others. It also encompasses feeding your body, mind, and spirit and nurturing yourself physically, emotionally, and spiritually using exercise, healthy foods, education, nature, meditation, prayer, and treating yourself.
- Often we have the misconception that self-care is selfish. I am here to tell you, self-care is not selfish and you can start to break down this untruth and take time for yourself.
How to get started with Self-Care
The key to any plan is to take action and just start.
In terms of self-care, it is best to make a plan and stick to it. Planning with a baby or toddler can be difficult. Yet, if you can give yourself grace and at least start some of your self-care routines, you can continue as your children grow and you find more time for yourself.
If you are still in “mommy survival mode” sleep is the number one recommended form of self-care. Try to find time to rest throughout the day if you are not getting enough sleep at night with the baby and nap when the baby naps. Also, try taking turns with your partner getting up at night. These times are tough, but they will pass and this is coming from a mom whose children were not good sleepers.
However, if you are ready for a self-care routine you can focus on the following:
- morning self-care routine
- evening self-care routine
Tips for Success in Self-care
The number one tip I have for self-care success is to plan, plan, plan! If you are wishing you had more time for something, it probably won’t happen.
Yet, if you plan for it you will have a dedicated chunk of time to take care for yourself and feel whole again. So call up a friend and have lunch. Set aside an hour a day where you can exercise and read. Plan for your self-care as you would plan for a doctor’s appointment or playdate. Only this time, the planning will be for you and you only!
Common Questions/FAQ About Self-Care
With anything new, people often have many questions. Here are some frequently asked questions I have encountered and added posts on this blog to help you with more resources.
Question 1: Why do I need Self-Care?
- Self-Care is important for anyone, especially for moms. As moms, we are often rushing around throughout our day trying to please everyone and get everything done and we are often left feeling exhausted. By planning self-care into your day, you are saying to yourself and your family, “I matter.” and you DO matter! You deserve to feel loved and pampered and I will say it again: Self-Care is NOT Selfish!!!
Question 2: How do I find time for self-care?
- In short, if something is important enough in life, we make time for it. If you make self-care a priority each and every day, you will find the time. Try keeping a family calendar or planner and add “self-care” to your daily routine. Use this time to take a bath, read a book, take a walk, paint, meditate, journal, or any other form of self-care you desire.
- For more self-care tips check out this post of 10 Self-Care Ideas for Moms
Question 3: What are some easy ways I can practice self-care
- Even if you are short on time, you can still take advantage of ten-minute stretches and do something therapeutic. Some easy things you can do for yourself are keep a book on your phone or by your bed so you don’t have to search for something to read. You can buy yourself a treat to enjoy throughout the week. Also, make yourself a cup of tea and journal for ten minutes. There are also a plethora of 10-minute exercise videos on youtube including yoga or barre. Don’t forget to keep healthy snacks on hand so you don’t grab junk food.
- Check out this post on How to Fit Self-Care into Your Daily Routine for more ideas.
Question 4: What are some creative ways to practice self-care
- Tapping into your creative side will help you feel refreshed and whole. Some easy creative things you can do are write in a journal, paint, use adult coloring books, and/or do crafts.
- Here is another post I wrote about creative forms of self-care you can check out!!
Question 5: What are some self-care tips I can start now?
- Yes, start now. Start today. Continue your self-care and it will become a habit. Some things you can do today are as follows: take a bath, use a face mask, eat a healthy snack, walk around the block, and/or watch a funny movie. These are some simple activities you can try today and enjoy yourself.
The Last Thing You Need to Know About Self-Care
- We are all just trying out best every day as moms and we deserve to feel loved, taken care of, and whole. Self-care is not selfish and you deserve to be loved and taken care of just like those little babies you are raising. So make time for yourself and keep giving yourself love and adoration.
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Feeling overwhelmed, mama? Take advantage of this free self-care guided journal to help you attend to all of your self-care needs: