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Everyone always babbles on and on about how important self-care is and how critical it is to our well-being. People like to make the point that moms need to “make time for ourselves,” but I always wonder – how??? As a working mom you can’t seriously expect me to turn over any time with my son for myself. My time with him is already frustratingly minimal. And my husband is a realtor, so his weekends and evenings aren’t exactly without their scheduling conflicts, so I don’t look forward to giving up time with him either. The house is constantly a mess, we always need food, I need to continue to go to work – there isn’t really room for something to “give” in favor of self-care with limited time available.
A couple of weeks ago I took a personal day. I was exhausted from days of poor sleep, dealing with family issues, and a sick and teething baby. I needed to grab some sleep and relax, and that’s what I tried to do. But I guess I tried a little too late because the following week had me sick and out of work for 3 days. Sicker than I’ve been in a long time. I suspect I didn’t fend off the illness as well as I normally would because I had been seriously lacking in the self-care department. Go figure.
In recognition of my need to be better about taking care of myself (in addition to everyone else around me), I’ve begun carving out a little bit of time for myself to relax and just take care of me. Here are some of the things that I’m trying to incorporate. I’d love for you to tell me what works best for you!
Here are the self-care techniques I’ve tried with limited time:
I try to do at least a couple of these a week – rarely do they happen the same day:
- Grab a 20 minute workout
- Meditate using my Headspace app
- Go out for coffee or a drink (either alone or with a friend)
- Give myself a spa treatment of some kind (I gravitate towards face masks such as this clay mask and and this sheet mask by Acure)
- Create something
- Read for fun
- Spend two hours before bed without technology
- Have a technology free meal with my husband
- Rest (preferably nap if I can grab one) without any competing priorities or distractions
- Avoid social media for an entire day
- Take a long shower or bubble bath
- Spend time in nature (we have a terrific trail near our home)
- Start my own bedtime routine early and take my time
- Spend time stretching
- Snuggle with my husband, son, or dog undistracted