6 Simple and Easy Self Care Tips for Busy Moms

6 Simple and Easy Self Care Tips for Busy Moms

Most self care tips not realistic. No, I don’t have time to get a pedicure. My elementary-age child was late for practice, the baby was grumpy from another restless night, and the toddler was triumphantly dancing on the kitchen countertop despite the reminder I gave 30 seconds earlier that we only dance on the floor. Somehow, in the midst of this, I was supposed to prioritize self-care.

When self care takes lots of time and effort, it’s not self care anymore. I am right there with you. As a mom of 3, I can tell you that there are seasons of thriving and seasons of surviving. I am passionate about self care, and I feel strongly about having appropriate and realistic expectations of ourselves.

That’s why I am so excited to share these 6 simple tips on how to implement self care into your daily routine. And no, I’m not going to tell you to wake up an hour early every day. Sleep wins in my house, always and forever, amen.

#1 Drink Your Coffee Hot

Why is it so hard to finish a cup of coffee with littles running around? It’s basically impossible to enjoy the full cup while it’s still hot. Reheat that cup, mama. Reheat it as many times as you need to. Make a fresh pot even. Drink your coffee hot.

There is something comforting about a hot cup of coffee. Drinking lukewarm coffee makes us all feel blah, and no one wants to start the day off feeling blah. To level up, drink that morning happy bean juice from a special mug. I really like this one with a verse from the book of Proverbs. Whatever mug you use, let it be one that inspires you and motivates you.

#2 Get Dressed

I know. Pandemic life made daily pajamas socially acceptable. But think about how good it feels when you put on real clothes instead of those same sweat pants from yesterday. I always have a little more pep in my step if I’ve gotten dressed for the day, and it helps me feel overall more refreshed.

I’m not saying go full glam when you’re spending your day at home with babies and toddlers. Do whatever “get dressed” means to you. Sometimes I prefer a hoodie to a sweater. Leggings instead of jeans.

I actually really enjoy make up, so I wear it just about every day. However, you might be more of a moisturizer and mascara only girl. You do you, friend. But spending ten minutes in the morning tending to yourself can really help you feel refreshed for your day.

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#3 Have a Special Afternoon Snack

The house is finally quiet, and the babies are napping. I know that never ending list of chores is calling you. But hear me on this, the to do list will never end. I know, it’s a hard truth, but there will always be something else to do.

Take 30 minutes. Fix a favorite snack, you know, the snack you keep hidden from the kids in the back of the pantry or that random cabinet. Then, put on a show that doesn’t include Cocomelon or Mickey Mouse. I promise the day will not fall apart while you take these 30 minutes for yourself.

With three babies five and under, the refreshing sweet bubbles of the Prosecco paired with the slight bittersweet taste of the dark chocolate made me feel fancy and fun when my days felt mundane. I looked forward to that special treat each day. And, of course, I am not advocating for being irresponsible.

#4 Move Your Body

Exercise was not something I was very good at maintaining during the years when my kids were babies. However, having a fulfilling exercise routine now, it makes me wish that I had made my physical fitness more of a priority sooner. It’s one of my regrets of those early years.

Sweet friend, you are worth it. Even if you are taking five minutes at the end of the day to just stretch, it will help you to unwind and recharge. Also, I really encourage you to get outside and move your body. Maybe that means going for a walk or playing with your kids in the backyard.

What ever it is, work up a sweat every now and then. I promise you will be glad you did. And if you’re looking for great at home workouts, I really like Blogilates.

#5 Write It Down

Journaling has so many benefits. I find journaling really helpful for processing life. It’s not something I consistently do, but whenever I am in a season of survival, journaling is what gets me through.

Writing out all the things gets them out of your head and on to the paper instead. It helps you think and process those challenging times in a more objective manner.

Journaling is also a wonderful way to keep track of your prayers and/or meditations. If you want to explore journaling from a Christian perspective, I love these Write the Word journals. I am currently working through the one on worship.

#6 End Your Day With a Hot Bath

I am convinced when people say they are not “bath people,” they haven’t actually given baths a chance. Think of a bath as an experience – not just a mode to get clean.

My nightly bath is essential to my mental health. I say that with all sincerity. My husband and children know not to come near the bathroom while I’m taking my bath. When soaking in that magnificent hot water, the weight of the day lifts off my shoulders while my entire body relaxes. The scent of my favorite body wash calms my mind and allows the daily stressors to melt away. The quiet and peaceful bath centers and decompresses my introverted self.

Sometimes I make it fancy with bubbles and a candle. But most of the time, it’s not. It doesn’t need to be. Give it a chance. I even turn my husband into a bath person.

Let the day melt away.

Often when we think of self care, we think of these grand excursions like a spa day or girls’ trip. However, I have found self care to be more effective when you can do little things for yourself consistently throughout the day. It’s also important to communicate with your person about what you need.

Having a self care routine reminds yourself that you are worthy, lovely, and called to the season you’re in. That season might feel like thriving, or it might feel like you’re barely surviving. Either way, I hope these self care tips help you feel loved, because you are!

Self Care is Basic

Self Care is Basic

It is time that we stop apologizing for being actual humans. We are not machines, people! We need rest. We need a break. When I say self care is basic, I mean self care is a basic human need. It is not indulgent. It is not spoiling yourself. It is taking time for your mental, physical, and spiritual health intentionally. Of course, anything can be twisted and warped into something its not supposed to be, and self care isn’t any different. But I am not talking about that here. I am talking about intentionally taking time for yourself, so you can be the best you.

Perspective

I remember when I first became a stay at home mom. I had visions of a 1950’s housewife, who spent her days cooking three meals a day for her family in her always immaculate house. You know what those moms did? They put their babies either in a play pin, propped in front of the TV, or being watched by hired help. When I realized my vision was a fallacy, I realized what undue pressure I was putting on myself. I drove myself mad trying to live up to these lofty expectations that were completely self imposed. Hear me, sweet friend. It is not a thing to have a perfect house and perfect peaceful children all the time. It’s just not. And that is okay! It’s time that we look at our selves and our lives through a realistic lens.

Healthy Expectations

What am I reasonably capable of in a given day? What would be nice to accomplish but isn’t a necessity? What do I need to do to take care of myself today, so I am starting with a full cup tomorrow. There is nothing worse than feeling like we are running on empty. I see this all the time, especially with new moms. We have visions of what we will be like as mothers, and sometimes reality doesn’t match. For example, I did not know that I get overstimulated by noise until I had my own children. When I am overstimulated, I get short tempered and shouty (I may have just made up that word). I know that is something I need to mitigate. If my kids are being loud, I might need to take a few minutes and go upstairs where it’s quiet. I might (*gasp*) even need to scroll on my phone for a few minutes to feel like I’ve separated a little. Then, I am better able to come back to reality and not be frustrated and shouty with my kids.

Prevent the Burn Out

Here me, mama. Taking time for yourself is not detracting something from you family. It is investing in them. A better you is a better wife and a better mother. If you’re looking for permission to take that break, I am giving it to you. If you are needing someone to tell you to let the laundry sit there this time, so you can take a much needed nap, I’m telling you. There will ALWAYS be something that needs to be done. Our lists are never completely checked off. There will always be something else to do. But that doesn’t mean you have to give in to this pressure of getting it all done perfectly. Take a beat. Take a breath. Take a nap. And if you are looking for some extra pampering, check out these products. Also, here are my best tips and tricks on incorporating a self care routine into your day.

Is Survival Mode the New Normal?

Is Survival Mode the New Normal?

Will we be living in survival mode forever? I really hope not, but it sure does feel that way sometimes doesn’t it? I don’t know about you, but just when we seem to get into some semblance of a routine that feels comfortable, a curve ball comes our way. Recovering from the virus has taken a lot longer than I wanted, which is SUPER annoying and frustrating. I have dreams of living my best quarantine life, but I’m not physically able to at this point. I was going to clean and declutter all the things. Additionally, I wanted to spend my afternoons getting lost in a great book, and I planned to cook new recipes, including perfecting French macarons. I was going to blog three times a week and post content to Instagram every day. I was going to tackle my kid’s picky eating, and we were going to be loving vegetables in no time. Oh, the plans I had!!

We are Going Through a Collective Trauma

But here’s the thing, friend. None of us have been through a pandemic before. None of us have been in a situation where we’ve had extensive shelter in place orders to follow. We are going through a collective traumatic experience. There is no play book for this. So, I think it’s vital we give ourselves grace for being in survival mode. It’s also vital that we extend that grace to others. It seems to be so common for people to experience good days and hard days. Happy days and sad days. Productive days and lazy days. And that’s okay!

What Can We Do about Survival Mode?

Living in “survival mode” mentality is, quite frankly, exhausting. So, what are we to do? I think the first thing we can do is actively acknowledge that this is hard. Take some deep breaths and just sit with that for a moment. The second thing I think we can do is establish some self care routines, not only for ourselves, but also our partners and children. For example, last week I decided Friday mornings would be my husband’s time for himself. He goes for a long drive, catches up with friends over the phone, or finishes up work from the week. The key is that he is off duty as husband and dad for those few hours, and it fills him up so well! He comes back refreshed and revived.

Self Care for Everyone

Self care for our kids has been interesting. They are young (7, 5, and 2). Basically, my entire life is caring for them, ha. But, I have bought them more of their favorite snacks since quarantine started. Who doesn’t love comfort food? I also check in with my older 2 kids and really ask them how they are feeling about having to stay home and not see their friends. We have been able to have some really good talks about our feelings, and they feel supported and heard when I tell them that sometimes I am sad too. Additionally, we make sure they spend time outside at every opportunity when the weather allows it.

For me, self care looks different depending on how I am feeling. because I am still healing from covid19. When I was spending a lot of time in bed, I shopped online for a few spring wardrobe additions. It helped me remember that brighter days will indeed come. Now that I am up and about more, I like to go for a quick 20 minute drives a few times a week and really blast the music (…in my minivan, haha!).

Whatever self care looks like for you, do it. Because you know what self care really is? It’s a way for us to take care of our mental health, and that is valid and important. You have permission to do what you need to do to recharge and take care of your mental health, mama. Commit to climbing out of survival mode. It’s true that you might have to get creative with self care, especially if you’re more extroverted. Maybe it’s a zoom coffee date or cocktail hour with your friends. Or, maybe it’s going on a walk or trying out a new exercise video. Maybe it’s crafting or reading or painting. Whatever it is, you do you mama, because you are worth it!