What you don't have, you can't give. Thus, it's critical to look after yourself as a mother in order to give your children the finest care possible.
As a new mom, having little to no time to oneself while focusing nearly entirely on your infant might be overwhelming. Although it may seem difficult, it is critical for new parents to realize that they need to take care of themselves as well.
Of course, many parents don't have convenient access to child care, making it even more difficult to carve out time for self-care.
But if you do find time, even if it's for few minutes, don't feel bad about it; remember, self-care isn't selfish.
And when you do have time to yourself, do something that truly recharges you. Here are some inexpensive self-care options for parents, whether you only have a few minutes or even have time for a lengthier activity.
Self-Care Ideas For Moms of All Ages
Taking time for self-care when you can can help you feel more centered and "you" as you adapt to your new position as a parent.
1. Take a bath
Showering can be difficult, especially if you're caring for a newborn, but it refreshes you on all levels, not only physically, but also emotionally and psychologically.
2. Make a timetable
As a new parent, sticking to a schedule can be difficult, particularly if you have a newborn who still hasn't established into a normal sleep habit. However, identifying a day and time that is usually available for you can help you prioritize self-care.
Block off that window if your infant likes to snooze around 1:30 p.m. and your spouse is home on Sundays.
3. Take a walk
Taking a walk, whether it's a five-minute walk around the street or an hour-long break over your lunch break, can make a huge difference in your mental health. A breath of fresh air, a shift of scenery, and physical activity can all help you reset.
4. Take some time to meditate
Meditation is a tested method of recharging. It also offers health benefits: According to some studies, meditation can help with anxiety, depression, insomnia, stress, and exhaustion. Are you beginner to meditation and unsure where to begin?
On YouTube, you may find free films as well as meditation programs made exclusively for pregnant women and new parents.
5. Take time to read
After a long day, shutting down your phone and immersing yourself in the chapters of a great book before bed might help you wind down. Consider joining a virtual book club with pals to keep yourself engaged.
6. Pamper yourself
Squeezing in a few additional minutes to treat yourself, whether it's a sheet mask or a home pedicure, will give you peace of mind and de-stress. What's better? In a comfy bathrobe, combine your pampering session with a relaxing TV show and a cup of tea.
7. Give your best pal a call
Do you have 30 minutes to spare during your baby's nap? Make a phone conversation with one of your best friends. It's amazing how much better you feel after trying to catch up with loved ones and updating them on your life while also hearing about theirs.
8. Keep a journal
Putting your ideas on paper can assist you in checking in with yourself and processing difficult emotions.
Don't know where to start? A brief search for guided diaries turns up a slew of possibilities, ranging from notebooks that push you to write about specific topics to health journals.
9. Take a break from social media for a day
Going off the grid, if you're able, can be extremely beneficial to your mental health. Remove your favorite social networking apps from your phone for the time being, or at the very least conceal them in a folder and turn off notifications.
You might be surprised at how much electricity you save this way. If you just want to stare at your gorgeous newborn, take a break from social media. Remember, you only owe yourself and your kid that time and care. Everyone else will have to wait a little longer.
10. Become more active
Exercise may be the last thing on your mind at the time, yet it provides numerous mental and physical benefits.
After just one moderate-to-vigorous workout, physical activity improves sleep quality and decreases anxiety, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Before going to bed, find a short, enjoyable dance workout on YouTube, take a jog around the block, or do some therapeutic yoga poses.
11. Encourage yourself
Throughout the day, writing self-praise in your phone's notes app can help you focus on the small and major wins.
Have you recently had a temper tantrum with your toddler? "I am a fantastic mom, and I handled things well," remind yourself."
Have you just nailed a job presentation? "Wow, I gave it my all, and it paid off," write.
"I am amazing at nighttime routines," say yourself once your child has gone to bed. Show yourself some love, no matter how minor the win may appear.
12. For a distraction-free cup of coffee, get up 15 minutes early
If you value quiet time, consider setting your alarm clock 15 minutes earlier than everyone else's to start your day off slowly and peacefully. Even a few minutes spent relaxing with a hot cup of coffee or tea might serve to create a mood for the day ahead.
13. Take a rest
While your child sleeps, it can be tempting to cross things off your to-do list. But allow yourself to take a break when you need it.
14. Say affirmations aloud
If you're short on time, reciting positive affirmations that speak to you can be a simple way to fit self-care into your schedule.
Recite positive affirmations like "I am capable of anything" or "I am unconditionally loved" while taking a shower, preparing coffee, or cleaning up around the house."
15. Take up a new pastime
Making time for yourself can be as simple as discovering (or re-discovering!) an activity you enjoy.
Consider discovering new artists or learning a new instrument if you appreciate music. If you feel energized by physical activity, look for free fitness sessions at a nearby park or download a health app that motivates you.
16. Make a delectable dessert
If making comfort food offers you delight, set aside a day to create it, whether it's a batch of baked goods or your Grandma's legendary meatball dish.
17. Become a volunteer
Volunteering is a great opportunity to give back to the local community and dedicate time to issues you care about, whether it's helping in a community center, walking dogs at a local shelter, or assisting neighbors in cleaning up your neighborhood park.
18. Get creative
If you feel energized by exercising your creative muscles, make time for your hobbies, whether it's crocheting, photography, or drawing.
19. Let your loved ones know when you require assistance or space
Of course, not everyone has a spouse, family, or friends that can help with kid care but if your loved ones can, that's great.
Allow them to step in and give you a respite. Make your needs known to your spouse. It's all too tempting to think they know you need to have a break, even if it's just a quiet and lonely trip to the store, which can feel like a luxury in those early days with a newborn.
Unless you say, 'Hey, I need a couple hours to myself,' they won't know. When do you think we'll be able to do that?'
20. Think about counselling
Because of shifting hormone levels, decreased sleep, and suddenly being accountable for another person, new parenting can leave you feeling overwhelmed and nervous.
Reach out to your doctor if you think you would benefit from counseling, especially if you suspect you're showing symptoms of a postpartum mood or anxiety condition.
Although it can be difficult to carve out time for self-care, doing so is totally worth it. Not only is good self-care important specifically in your role as a parent, but it's also an area of your life that you need to focus on regardless of who you are and what you do.
Remember, when you take care of yourself, it can positively affect everything else in your life; that includes the way that you parent your children.
And the more energy and enthusiasm you have, the better your time with your kids will be—not to mention the more positive energy they'll be bathing in!