Me time. Does that phrase excite you or drive you into overwhelm? I’ll show you how to invest in yourself, even when you’ve got kiddos round the clock.
Before we start, I’d like to talk briefly about the famous term ‘self care’. Somehow along the line, we’ve turned it into spa days and long soaks in the bath – but real self care starts with the very mundane too.
In fact, I like to call it self-preservation.
Self preservation vs self care
Self preservation implies that we are precious, sacred, worthy of PRESERVING.
Self preservation doesn’t happen in odd moments alone – it happens when you dedicate your whole day to your mental well-being.
When we look forward to precious ‘me time’ all day long – so much so that we lose the now – we’re met with disappointment.
So please, do get your me time in, but be patient if it doesn’t happen at first – it takes time to find a new rhythm. We’ve got this, let’s get started!
1) Set goals
The way to feel really fulfilled in life is to have a purpose and that goes for us mothers too! Gone are the days where we’re held back by systems made to keep us in the home.
Or at least, that’s what we’re working towards.
Even if we do choose to stay at home – which many modern moms do, I’m sure you’ll agree that our passions go beyond the household tasks.
So start by getting clear on what you want in life, in and outside of motherhood, then try and see how you can weave the two together.
They can be as big or small as you like – as long as they’re a reason for you to get up motivated in the morning to cultivate love for yourself.
2) Make it happen
There’s no use in setting goals if you don’t actually go after them. Yet turning your dreams into reality can be hard, especially when you’ve dedicated so much of your energy to your kids.
You know what I say? Start small. Break things up into tiny, manageable steps and just put one foot in front of the other.
Always fancied your hand at crafts? No use buying a whole bulk of material, start with what you have at home and get creative!
You’d be surprised what you can make out ofold t-shirts and towels. If your dream is to start writing, set aside a few minutes a day to simply free write or journal to get the juices flowing.
Do go get your goals, don’t get caught up in the process or you’ll give up before you’ve even got going.
3) Get on the same page as your partner
If you’re in a relationship or even if you’re co-parenting after a split, it’s important for you to get clear that you want to make changes, more energy for you and your passions.
Set aside a little time to discuss your mental wellbeing with your partner, let him her/her know how you plan to go forward so you can rearrange certain aspects of your daily life together to make it possible.
Discuss whether he’s willing to support you and if so, what he can do.
The same goes with any near family you may have that are willing to chip in with taking the kids from time to time, or childcare.
If you’re a stay at home mom, you could consider turning your passion into a little side income to support yourself and your family, whilst enjoying yourself at the same time.
If you’re a working mom, consider whether the job you’re currently in is aligned with where you want to be. If it’s not, you could think about changing career -when the moment is right. Or reduce your hours while budgeting in other areas of life.
4) Use moments for you wisely
Now this is a biggie. How often do you get a free moment, to then fill it up with stuff you ‘should’ be doing?
Happens all the time – we’re constantly in ‘on mode’, which means that even when we’ve finished a number of tracks, we’re thinking about what else needs doing.
To be able to persue interests outside of the daily grind, you have to give up that mentality a bit and realize that you can’t do it all.
When you do try and do it all, you’ll realize that something’s gotta give.
I think a great deal of this stems from our mentality around our role as women. We still have deep-rooted beliefs about whether we deserve to have more.
Let me tell you now, YOU DO DESERVE IT!
5) Make YOU a priority
Mama, you already know this but I’m gonna say it again: you should not come last!
Yes, your family is important, yes you have responsibilities but you are part of a team, not the entire machine alone.
The moment you start understanding your true worth, the sooner you will start to see things shift around you as people understand what you do and don’t accept in your life.
Being a priority means that you eat whole meals rather than the scraps your kids left. That you deserve the right to say no when something doesn’t please you, that you don’t have to make excuses to be you.
6) Find what works for you
Everyone has different tastes, the trick is finding something that moves you.
Something that makes you come alive the moment you get into it.
Now’s a great time, possibly better than ever as we evolve into a new era to work on our feminine self, expressing yourself authentically.
You could do a little yoga, meditation, or dance -whatever you feel called to.
If you try something and it doesn’t fit, don’t worry just try again! Don’t be afraid to fail, you can’t fail against yourself.
When you try, it means that you’re showing up for yourself and that means more than anything.
7) Let go of control
Last but not least, as mamas I feel we have to let go of the reigns a little to be able to flow better in our lives.
That means deciding what’s really important to us, and letting the rest go.
I’m talking small details, like worrying whether you made enough veggies today, whether your kids have surpassed their screen time, whether you are enough.
Let me tell you now, you are enough. You don’t need to be or do any more – if not for you.
Letting go of the need to control can also apply when you leave your kids in the care of someone else, be that their daddy or another carer.
There will always be someone who gives them treats at the wrong time, that allows things you wouldn’t…decide whether to pick those battles, or to be content at having some sacred alone time.
Of course, if there is something you strongly disagree with, please talk it out – but be mindful about what.