It’s easy to feel that we mamas are self-sufficient enough to handle everything thrown at us. We become so immersed in the euphoria of caring for everyone that we forget about ourselves. So in order to avoid burn-out and all the attendant risks that comes with it, here are some self-care tips to ensure you are always on top of the situation.
Plan ‘me’ time
I’m are not saying pack your bags and take a 3-month trip to the Bahamas, that would be cool though! But I say plan ahead, look at the calendar as you plan your kids schedule and plan your ‘me’ time. It’s easy to go through the week and forget yourself, so planning kinda forces you to stick to it. Do you take your kids to soccer practice or dance lessons? If so, while they are practice catch up on your reading/audiobook or podcast. Listen to your favorite spotify music album you created a while back and haven’t gotten around to. Another way is to pack a bag ahead of time for you, with your favorite snacks or anything that bring you pleasure. As they say ‘a goal without a plan is just a wish’. Don’t wish ‘me’ time plan it.
Have a support group
It’s tempting to always want to do things on your own out of fear that you will be labeled ‘a bad mama’. You don’t need to offer the solution in every circumstance. Let’s face it; in spite of how adorable kids are they seem to come with a truck-load of wants and needs that are capable of crushing anyone responsible for them. Having a support group means you avoid head-on collision that could leave you badly battered. Your support group becomes your self check on you and can comprise of your parents, friends, other mamas or even the internet communities or blog sites like this one. Having a solid sounding board is a must for every mama.
In the amazing journey of motherhood, you will encounter angels disguised as people who are ever willing to lend a helping hand. Take advantage of all that; incorporate them into your space. There are a few mamas I know at my daughter’s school that alternate with after school pickup and babysitting. That way one mama, can spend some time with herself or together with hubby. A mother’s helper is another way to incorporate help, for example a 13 or 14-year old can come over and watch the kids while you work out or get your nails done. You won’t always get free help all the time so be prepared to pay.
Appearance still Matters
With kids, it’s so tempting to slip into the routine of forgetting ourselves to the point of neglecting our appearance, that’s a huge no-no. This is a huge trap that we mamas easily fall into and it’s become so widespread that it has even evolved into its own style, ever heard of mama style? Think yoga pants, all day long.
Having babies doesn’t mean you’ve given up all rights to look stylish. Nah honey, you still have to bring your A-game. Take care of your hair, nails, visit the spa, use make up, looking good has a direct correlation with feeling good.
We mamas come pre-packaged with an inexhaustible supply of love for everyone; don’t forget to extend that love to you. In your bid to overcompensate, try not to over-exert yourself. If there is something you cannot do, say no. Communicate deliberately, leave no room for negotiating. You are not being mean, you’re just looking out for yourself. Also there should be no room for comparison. So what if you’ve still not gotten your pre-pregnancy svelte figure? So what if your 1-year post pregnancy tummy is still a bit bulgy and not as flat as Mrs. Jones who just delivered two days ago? Know that everybody has their own pace, and all of us are different with different body types. Just imagine if we were all the same, it would be a boring world so come to terms with your difference, embrace your own uniqueness.
Remember you now belong to an exclusive set of women responsible for life on earth, so maximum care of yourself is important. When happy mama is happy, everyone is happy.
How do you take care of ‘you’?
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