September is Self-Care Awareness Month and we have a special line up for you! Each Monday, our writers will share what self-care looks like for them. We hope to inspire you to dust off your journal, book that trip, make that spa appointment, or try that new class that caught your eye. You deserve to be living your best life!
I am definitely a visual learner. I’ve been really trying to explore what self-care really means to me lately. It’s been on my mind often as I am finally practicing self-care. It’s been a process getting there for me, as I should have started this a long time ago. I have had time to reflect and put into perspective how I wish self-care was spelled out for me.
S: See Yourself
Hello you! So glad you’re here. Most likely you are someone like me, who hasn’t seen themselves since hearing those first cries of your newborn baby. Three kids and almost ten years later, you still haven’t managed to see yourself. You got lost in motherhood, wanderlusted in the journey and soaked in the honor of what it means to be called Mom. You may also not have known the hard work and sacrifice that happens with those honors. Forgetting who you are while giving your entire being to everyone else. So see yourself again, as an individual and as a person, not as somebody else’s this or somebody else’s that. Welcome to YOU again.
E: Easing into your Expectations
Now that you see yourself again and recognize that self-care needs to come back on your radar, where in the heck do you start? You can go all in per say but easing in may be the best way to really figure out what you need and to deal with any limitations that may arise. Easing in may also be the perfect way to cope with hesitation. Everyone is different so find your expectations. Whether you dive in or barely put a toe in the water, congratulations, you are moving towards the right direction.
L: Letting Go
That hesitation…let go of that. That guilt…let go of that. The excuses…let go of that. Let it all go. Those things have only been roadblocks to the balance needed with self-care and with motherhood. Who else has felt guilty for leaving their kids for an evening out and then micromanages from their phone? (For this reason, we stopped allowing cell phones on date nights). Your kids will be fine for an hour with the babysitter while you go catch up on life at the coffee shop. Or you can put your kids in the gym daycare daily; it will build their immune system!
F: Find your passion
Find what you love again, discover something new to try or do something you’ve always wanted to do but have always been afraid of doing. Find the thing that relaxes you, gives you peace and lowers your blood pressure for a split second. What does self-care mean for you? Do you need a day away with the girls? Do you want to start a blog? Do you want to join the gym again? Do you love coffee and want to try a new coffee shop each week? Does photography bring you joy? Find what makes you happy and create an adventure for yourself.
C: Cost cannot be a deal breaker
A lot of self-care is free or has minimal costs but sometimes self-care does come with a price. If you need to take the trip, take it. If you need to splurge once in a while to get your hair done at the salon, go for it. If you need a massage once a month, make it work. I joined the gym and obviously, it’s not free. I had to rearrange the budget a bit to afford this. With my age and my retaining of baby weight, I can justify the price of this self-care piece in my life. Healthcare is expensive so I need to bring my self back to health to avoid these healthcare costs. You can totally justify self-care with a price tag when it is saving your life. You know your life and life circumstances. Do what you can and are comfortable with!
A: Agree to stick with it
Make a pact with yourself… I will practice self-care when I need it. Please don’t put yourself last again or forget about yourself again. You are an amazing mom that needs to take of herself when needed.
R: Realize it’s a need not a want
Getting your hair done, going to the gym, grabbing a coffee by yourself, going out to a concert with your girls, taking a nap, shopping at Target for hours on end with your phone on silent… those are really fun activities and at times you may feel they are more of wants than needs. But guess what- they aren’t! These are not wants; they are needs because you need a break and deserve that time to yourself.
E: Everyone is happy!
Happy wife, Happy life… When mom is ecstatic, happiness comes automatically! When you feel good about yourself and feel your needs are met, it will branch out to everyone you come in contact with. You can be content, find peace and just know you are living the life you want to live with your family.
Self-care can come with many interpretations and/or ideas. What does self-care look like for you? Any other tips to help other moms spell out self-care?