Self-care for moms

Reviewed by Theresa H. Care Delivery Manager & Family Nurse Practitioner

Time saver 3 min read

Being a mom can be all encompassing. You’re always juggling a million things and putting others and their needs first. And with so many roles and responsibilities, your own health and well-being tend to take a backseat. But failing to prioritize yourself and your health can leave you feeling physically, mentally and emotionally drained – making you more prone to all sorts of illnesses.

We know it’s easy to put off putting yourself first. While intellectually you know it’s important, some days – okay most – it’s hard to find a spare minute to devote to anything resembling self-care. And as you fall into bed at night exhausted, you may think to yourself “I’ll start doing that nice thing for myself tomorrow.” But when it comes to self-care, kicking the can down the road doesn’t work. Eventually, all that constant doing for others catches up with you. It’s time to fill up your own health and happiness cup.

Build a strong foundation for health

Let’s be honest. You aren’t going to have the capacity to be your best version when you aren’t getting adequate sleep, nutrients and physical activity. And we know how easy it is to settle for your toddler’s leftovers and stay up too late watching your favorite show. But trust us – you will feel so much better if you prioritize sleep, eat a nutrient-rich diet and incorporate movement into your day.

Looking for more ways to put your physical, mental and emotional health first? Keep reading!

5 self-care tips

  1. Embrace the journey – There will always be that Instagram-perfect mom who looks like she has it all together or that kid at daycare who seems better behaved and more advanced than your little one. But Instagram isn’t real life. And every child has their moments and quirks. Know that despite how things may appear, everyone struggles. And try to remind yourself that time is fleeting. Your kids really will grow up and become more independent.
  2. Give yourself time-outs – Motherhood – and the exhaustion, worry and constant doing that comes with it – can rob you of the ability to see and appreciate the little moments and joys. Set a timer two to three times throughout the day and take five minutes to tune in and take notice of your life. What do you love? What would you like to make better?
  3. Share more – Yes, you’ve somehow mastered giving one child a bath while nursing another and grocery shopping online. But despite your multi-tasking abilities, you’re not superhuman and you can’t do it all. Delegate tasks to your spouse or partner or enlist help from relatives, friends or a babysitter. It really does take a village.
  4. Feel everything – Motherhood can be a major rollercoaster. And being a mom often means powering through, even when you’re feeling tired, frustrated or sad. Pay attention to your feelings and allow yourself to feel them all. There are no bad feelings and trying to dismiss or push them down doesn’t mean they magically go away. It just means you’ll be throwing your own tantrum down the road.
  5. Stay true to you – When you give so much of your time, mental energy and heart to your family every day, you may not have much left to give to yourself. Make a point to do something – no matter how seemingly small – just for you. Light a good-smelling candle, sit in a sunbeam, listen to your favorite song or treat yourself to a latte. It’s the little things that add up to brighten your day.

Self-care is never selfish

You’re a mom, not a machine. And – we'll say it again for the people in the back – you need to put yourself first. So go ahead. Take that nap. Order that delicious and nutritious smoothie. And hit that yoga mat to stretch and breathe it out. Doing nice things for yourself and your body makes you a healthier and happier you. And what better way to teach your little one the importance of always loving and being kind to themselves. Big hugs!

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