In a time when the world seems like a scary place to be, a lot of fellow moms are sharing how hard they are finding the experience. They are finding the news and their social media platforms overwhelming and are struggling to juggle the roles of mother, worker, partner, and homemaker when there is no respite. Women, mothers in particular, are usually the emotional core of families. When they are feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or stressed, it results in their children and partners reflecting those same feelings.
That is why, at a time when life is uncertain, self-care is a necessity. Taking care of our own physical and mental health, so that we are in the best position to take care of others is vital. Self-care helps us manage our emotions better and helps reduce stress. It grounds us in the present moment and can ease our anxiety about the future.
Mothers often tend to put themselves at the end of the receiving line. We believe that we should prioritise our family, often at the expense of our own well-being. It can be difficult to learn how to carve out time for restoration, but this is necessary to allow us to move forward in a purposeful and calm way.
Here are some self-care tips and suggestions to get you through the next while.
- Identify and prioritise the things that are fundamental to your well-being. To do this, make a list of the things that make you happy and bring you a sense of peace.
- Consider the things that help you stay healthy, like sleep, exercise, a creative pursuit, boundaries, a nutritious diet, and self-compassion.
- These might include things that you do not want to do in the moment, but that you know are necessary (like exercise or preparing vegetables).
- Some activities, like quiet meditation or self-compassion may not be easy for you to do, but they are an essential ingredient in the self-care recipe.
- Find a way to incorporate the things on your list into your daily activities. If necessary, co-opt a partner in to keep an eye on the kids to give you a moment to recharge.
- Self-care does not have to cost money. A long bath, an hour alone to read or rest, a walk in the garden, or listening to your favourite music can be just as restorative as a more costly activity.
- Consider finding something that will give you a sense of purpose – you can tidy your cupboards, volunteer at a crisis hotline, or learn a new skill. Make sure you find a way to maintain your friendships and relationships. Whether by text, phone call, or video call, make time and find a way to share your struggles with those who care about you. Our boats may be different sizes, but we are all riding this wave together.
Try not to think of self-care as an indulgent practice, but rather as a practice of self-knowing and long-term maintenance that will help you to cope and even thrive in difficult times.
Remember that doing it all is impossible. All we can ever do is our best, but to do this, we need to be healthy and feeling positive.
By: Lesley Scott