It’s probably one of the most common questions. How do mums fit time in for self care?
Whether you’re a stay at home mum or a work away from home mum, time is tight (or none existent let’s face it)
But what if we could change the concept of self care? And change the concept of time in general?
It may sound woo-woo (and I love woo-woo!) but bare with me here.
What if self care didn’t mean spa days, pamper sessions or spending an hour relaxing in the bath? (as nice as it would be…)
The thing is, us mums are so busy, yet acts of self care are still possible.
I’m a passionate mum of two very young boys, a 23 month old toddler and a 5 week old baby.
I also run my wellness coaching business full time on my own, helping mums heal from anxiety disorders naturally.
And I’ve re-termed what self care actually means to me.
Self care as defined by the Oxford dictionary is “The practice of taking action to preserve or improve one's own health.”
Therefore self care-when I read this definition-can include choosing healthy and nourishing foods to eat, taking a 5 minute guided meditation, a walk outside in the fresh air, even just allowing yourself to sit with a cuppa and putting a movie on in the background.
These are acts of self care, because you’re prioritising yourself.
Any act where you prioritise your wellbeing is an act of self care.
I’ve shared below my top 3 acts of self care as its stands in my life right now, which would be particularly beneficial to any new mums reading this, with babies in their arms.
Even just a tiny something to bring back a tad of you time amongst the nappies, feeds and cuddles.
Please choose to do this. When your baby sleeps, please sleep. If you’re anything like me you’ll think you need to clean the house or tidy the toys. You’ll be so determined not to sleep because there’s so much other stuff to do too, right? But I believe what’s best for us new mums is to sleep. Sleep sleep sleep. If you can sleep, do. Of course this may not be possible if other children are around, but even a 5 minute rest here and there does wonders to help your body recover and you to have a little more energy during the day. Sleep is also paramount to preventing mental health challenges such as anxiety spikes and depression.
Positive self talk.
Again, not something you’d associate with self care, but extremely important. When you look in the mirror what does your head say? I bet it’s “God, look at those rolls. Ew, look at those stretch marks…” It’s time to change that narrative.
Your incredible body just did a miracle act! You nourished and birthed a baby. So be kind to your body and forgive yourself for not looking like a catwalk model. Your body needs to recover as does your mind from pregnancy and childbirth, and you can really help yourself here by talking kindly to yourself.
At least three times a day, go to the mirror and tell yourself how well you’re doing. Tell yourself how great you look. Tell yourself how proud you are of yourself. Say “I love you!” in the mirror because you darn well deserve to! The more you practise doing this, the more you’ll start to believe it, and belief is everything.
Daily fresh air.
Grab the pram and go for a walk regardless what the weather’s doing outside. That's why we have raincoats! There is no better time to get some headspace than the morning or afternoon stroll. Allow yourself to float away in nature.
Really focus on the beauty of the trees, the noise of the wind, and the feeling of the air as you breathe in and out. Even better, if you’ve got your partner at home to watch the baby, go for a walk on your own. It’s the best self care therapy you can do in my opinion.
Plug in some headphones if you like and listen to your favourite music. Whatever you fancy, just take this time for you.
These are so simple, but to me, right now, (and I believe you could be in a similar boat) these self care tips go a long way when they’re taken seriously.
I highly recommend doing them, and seeing how much better you feel afterwards.
I’d love to hear from you if you do try these out!
And remember, nothing happens the first or second time-it’s the commitment to do these over a longer period that will make a remarkable difference to how you feel overall.
Sending a hug as always.