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Women constantly put other things and people ahead of themselves. It’s time to put yourself back on the list and take time for self-care in the new year.
Many years ago, I was watching an episode of Oprah where she was talking about living your best life. In all of the things that were said on that episode, most of which is a blur all these years later, the one thing that has always resonated with me is that Oprah said we need to take care of ourselves. Specifically, as women, we need to put ourselves back on the list.
We all have a
I am a homeschooling mom of 3. I lead my daughter’s Girl Scout troop and my youngest son’s Lion Cub den. All while running my own business, taking care of our home, and doing my best to care for our family.
I’m not on that list. I need to be on that list. And by putting myself on the list, I know I’ll be taken care of but just as importantly I’m teaching kids about self-care and why we need to listen to our bodies in that way.
Realizing Things Need To Change
Over the last 10 years, I have dealt with reoccurring battles with postpartum depression and anxiety. Over the last year, I was abruptly taken off my meds. This was the start of a debilitating battle between my rational self and anxiety that has overwhelmed me in so many ways and has consumed my life. It’s not something I wish upon anyone. The good news though is that there is
Last March, I also suffered a physical injury. Walking down my front steps, I rolled my ankle which resulted in a rather serious sprain. I went from being fairly active and on the go to sitting with my ankle elevated and iced for days, dare I say weeks, at a time.
The most recent ailment was an ear infection in October … which now on January 1 still isn’t completely clear. The issues with my ears have caused serious dental pain (who knew), sinus migraines, ear infections, vertigo, and jaw pain. I’ve been on meds for all of December, and I have an appointment with a specialist scheduled for next week.
I’m not saying all of this to complain but rather to explain why I need to do more to take care of myself. My children are still incredibly young (my youngest is 5) and they need their mama around and healthy. Both physically and mentally.
Taking Care of Myself: Medical
I need to take better care of myself. It’s a given. If I don’t take care of myself, I’m not going to be able to take care of anyone else. My children need their mother and my husband needs his wife. More importantly, I need to feel like me again.
In January, I will be going to an ENT to get the issues with my ears addressed once and for all. Equally important, I will be scheduling a physical with a new physician. One who will take me seriously and will work with me on a plan to get my overall health on track.
I’m going to resume chiropractic care (which went on hiatus over the holidays). I’m looking forward to getting an adjustment and having my body feel strong and stable again. Regular chiropractic adjustments have helped me in the past with my migraines and vertigo. I have also noticed that I sleep better and am overall healthier with regular adjustments.
In the coming year, I am also going to schedule an eye exam and a dental exam. I’m going to wait until after the ear issues have been resolved because I’m learning that ear issues can impact everything else.
As I mentioned before, my word for 2019 is PEACE. I am looking forward to taking time to relax and unwind, and more importantly to disconnect on a regular basis.
Disconnecting is something that I have had trouble with in the past because during the day my only adult interaction is through social media. With running my own business, which relies on me being online and connected to social media, turning it off entirely has always made me feel guilty. I’m working on allowing myself to turn things off. I’m going to start small with set hours where I won’t use my phone or computer. Ultimately, I’d like to have at least 1-2 days per week where I am completely offline.
The easiest thing for me to incorporate into my relaxation routine is evening showers and a skincare routine. I know, who doesn’t shower? But the reality is when I am so busy, I end up taking showers midday and then being on the run. If I can get in a routine of evening showers and then spending some time on my skincare – facial scrubs, face masks, moisturizers, home pedicures, and the like – it will help me to unwind before bed, and have me doing something for myself each day even if its only 15 minutes.
One thing I’d like to incorporate into a relaxation routine is regular massages. Once upon a time, I thought people who went for regular massages were spoiled and that it was a luxury. The reality is that for a lot of people, myself included, its a form of therapy. Just like going to the chiropractor helps me to maintain my good health, going for regular massages and body work will help me to continue to feel like myself, and keep all that stress I hold onto in my muscles to release.
Self-Care for the Busy Mom
I’m being realistic about what I can and can’t do for self-care on a regular basis, but there are a lot of little things that could help me to feel more like me and help me to keep myself on the list. Things that don’t take much time or money.
Here are 20+ ideas for small things you & I can do for self-care.
- Brew a whole pot of tea and enjoy it while working or homeschooling.
- Buy a fancy dessert to enjoy after the children are in bed.
- Spend time in the garden.
- Plant a flower garden so I can have fresh cut flowers in the house throughout the year.
- Listen to the music that I like when I’m out running errands.
- Spend time outside no matter the weather, even if I don’t want to because I know it will be good for me.
- Use aromatherapy at bedtime and while working around the home.
- Incorporate aromatherapy into my shower & skincare routines.
- Take free classes online to learn something that I am interested in.
- Journal – check out this free gratitude journal
- Make time to meet up with friends for coffee/tea at least once every few months.
- Schedule days off from work and the children’s activities.
- Run errands alone so I get some much needed quiet time.
- Take a spontaneous day off when the weather is beautiful.
- Cuddle with a kitty and watch a movie or show that I’m interested in.
- Take time to write.
- Go for a walk and remember what it feels like to move frequently.
- Repeat positive affirmations.
- Practice speaking kindly to myself and others.
- Find my breath.
- Remember that NO is a complete sentence, and that I don’t owe anyone any additional explanation.