When we have newborns in the house, people urge us to sleep when they sleep.
But what about as they get older, when they stop sleeping during the day?
What about the rest of the time?
We’re exhausted. Overworked. Underpaid. Completely under-appreciated.
Can we get five minutes of peace?
I’ve been thinking about self-care a lot lately. For myself. My good friends I’m hearing from who are struggling. For my work staff who are just now learning the joys and sorrows of working motherhood.
Since we’re on a mission here of creating happy families, we must begin with ourselves. And that means dads too.
So, in an effort to remind myself and all of you about taking care of ourselves here are some of the things we need to do daily — or, at least weekly — to care for ourselves. This list below should be used at the same time as the Thinking Mama’s To-Do List. And, on really bad days, in place of that list because if Mama ain’t happy, nobody’s happy.
A Busy Mama’s To-Do List.
Take time to ourselves. For some it might be a long walk. For others it might be zoning out in front of a good book. For me, it’s doing absolutely nothing. No noise is preferred. This is the only way I know that I will turn my overactive brain off for a while. Embrace silence. Let go.
Sleep. Go to bed early, especially when you feel yourself running down.
Eat well. It’s really easy to grab lunch out or skip meals but we all know that is not the healthiest way to take care of our bodies. It’s best to take time before you go to bed to pack yourself or make a truly healthful lunch.
Wake up happy. The best way to wake up happy is to do one thing that fills you with energy and joy each and every morning. That usually means don’t run to the computer and check email. But, rather, light a candle and meditate. Go for a run. Or do yoga. Whatever works for you is entirely up to you. Our answers may vary.
Stay organized. This is really key for me. I’m still not nearly as organized as I would like to be but I’ve come a long, long way. Every paper has a place. Every thing has its place. I have a good system for understanding what needs done today and what can wait until tomorrow, or even next week. Things still fall through the cracks but not nearly as often.
Practice being calm. See this list for more on that.
Get a hobby. Blogging is mine. It used to be writing fiction. Sometimes it’s just brainstorming. But anything that makes our souls all warm and happy inside has to be good for us?
Socialize. I’m not the best at this one, I’ll admit. As an introvert, I am more interested in a one-on-one conversation over a fine dinner than I am at just hanging around in a group where I’m almost never heard. And yet I do realize the power of friendships and I always feel amazing after a really great conversation with a friend, even if it’s just by phone.
I’m curious to know what you do to take care of yourself. Are you lacking in this area and, if so, why? Or, do you do well at this? If so, please share your secrets! We all probably need to do better so that we’re patient and calm. What will you do starting right now to improve your own self-care routine?