“You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first.”
We understand, Mummas. Having a child of your own is all-consuming. But, taking time to care for your own needs isn’t selfish, it’s absolutely NECESSARY!
Self-care isn’t about long bubble baths or weekly spa sessions (although those are great as well). It’s the practice of caring for your own physical and emotional needs, and is an amalgamation of many small daily practices and routines.
Here are some reasons why caring for your own needs is healthy not just for yourself, but for your kids as well:
- To be a good parent, you need to take care of yourself first so that you have the physical and emotional energy to be able to take care of your family.
- Kids look to their parents and learn from how they treat themselves. When you pay attention to your own needs, you are modeling self-care and self-respect for your children.
- When you feel rested and balanced, you can handle situations in a better and more patient manner, including how you interact with your children.
- You feel less stressed, guilty and/or anxious, and learn to focus on the things that really matter.
- A well-rested mind and body leads to positive thoughts, a cheerful mood and higher productivity
So, if you’re wondering about how to start practicing more “self-care” when you can barely even squeeze in time for a quick bath, we get you. There isn’t any definite answer on how to practice self-care, but there are many tiny habits that you can start incorporating into your daily lives to help care for your own mental & physical well-being.
Here are 15 simple self-care practices to help you get started:
- Prioritize something that you’ve been putting off for a while. Go ahead and scratch it off your to-do list. Whether it is watching that Netflix episode that everyone is raving about, or reading a book that you’ve been meaning to start for a while or simply sitting alone by the balcony with your cup of coffee! It might just be something simple that you’ve been ignoring, but getting it out of the way can give you a happy sense of completion and reduce anxiety. Trust us, it feels good.
- Don’t shy away from asking for help – It is OKAY to ask your husband, family or a friend to take care of the baby while you catch up on some me-time or need to run some errands for your personal work! A little extra help and support never hurts and you have nothing to feel guilty about! Remember- Team Work Makes The Dream Work!
- Say NO when you need to. As a Mom, you tend to put everyone’s needs above your own and often feel guilty to say “no” to others. Setting personal boundaries is necessary & important, and actually sets a really good example for your kids as well.
- When doing something, try and give your complete focus to it, without getting distracted by other tasks. Even though women are experts at multitasking, try and focus on one thing at a time and give it your complete attention.
- Go out and get some sun daily. Simple activities like going for a peaceful walk (with or without your little ones) and spending some time in the sun are therapy for the soul.
- Give yourself tiny rewards through the day. Me-time is definitely hard to squeeze in when you’re a parent, but try and reward yourself tiny pockets of peace through the day. This could be a 15-minute power nap when you really need one, enjoying a quiet lunch on your own, uninterrupted cuddle time with the kids, or anything that brings you joy.
- Schedule time for the things you love. Make an actual hour-by-hour daily schedule that works for you and add time slots for yourself.
For example: “7.45 am – 8 am: Quick meditation” “7 pm – 8 pm: Dinner and quality-time with the family” “10 pm onwards: Switch off phone/laptop and read a book or watch TV.”
You might not always stick to your schedule, but writing it down will actually help you compartmentalize your day better and help you make an extra effort to make time for yourself.
- Meditate daily. Whether it’s 2 minutes or 10 minutes, make the time to meditate. Start with simple breathing exercises. Download an app or follow a guided meditation on the internet.
- Do stuff for YOURSELF that makes you happy. Even if it’s just one little thing every day.
- Pay attention to your physical health. As a Mom, you might spend hours preparing healthy food for your little ones, while ignoring your own dietary needs. Looking out for your own health is an important part of physical self-care. Planning your weekly menu in advance can be helpful. Right from eating healthy to exercise, don’t forget to focus on your physical well-being.
- Build a simple daily skincare regime. You might not have time for an elaborate beauty routine but following a basic 5-minute skincare regime is healthy and FEELS GOOD! Click here to check out our deeply-nourishing & effective skin pampering products for moms.
- Take power-naps when you feel drained. The honest truth is that SLEEP is pretty elusive when you’re a new parent. So, squeeze in as many power naps as you can. Sleep plays a huge role in one’s overall well-being.
- Make time to socialize. Even if that means a 15-minute video call with your best friend. If you’re unable to meet up often, schedule a weekly social visit with friends or family.
- Take yourself on a date. Get out of the house on your OWN once in way - whether it’s simply going for a walk around your block, a drive on your own, or a solo visit to your nearest coffee shop. Solo time is absolutely essential.
- Do things that stimulate your mind. Learning new things is also great for your mental well-being. Whether it’s listening to an interesting podcast, or spending 5 minutes daily on a language-learning app, find what you enjoy most.
The bottom line? While it isn’t always easy to prioritize your own needs, it is absolutely vital. Tell us, mummas – what are some small ways in which you practice self-care?