Okay you busy moms out there -- yes, I'm talking to you! -- when was the last time you took a moment for yourself? Hopefully you're able to answer that question without having to think back too far. The idea of "me time" has been buzzing around a lot lately, and the more I've put it into practice, the more I've become a believer in the importance of taking some time for myself!
Now I know at first the thought of hiring a sitter, scheduling a pedicure, or even splurging on a purchase from your favorite website can seem a little selfish, and might even cause feelings of guilt and neglect. But trust me, those minutes (or hopefully hours) you get to spend to yourself are worth every penny!
Having some "me time" allows you to decompress, relieve some stress, and recharges your mind and body. All of those benefits allow you -- especially you moms -- the freedom and energy to give back to your family and loved ones around you.
Here's a little insight into my recent journey:
I wake up 10 minutes earlier. I spend about 10-15 minutes each morning, practicing what some call a "gratitude journal" of sorts. I spend time writing down a few things that I'm grateful for, while reflecting on the previous day. I go into as much detail as I can, noting every significant thing that I can recall. I then take time to acknowledge what I did well the day before, and what I need to put a little more effort into. And lastly I write down what I hope to become, who I am aspiring to be.
By spending those few extra minutes alone each morning before my kiddos wake up, I get the opportunity to focus solely on myself and set the tone for what I want to accomplish for the day. I'd even go so far as to say it's quickly becoming my favorite part of the day!
I make my own food. That may seem a little funny, but taking time each day to make food I'm excited for and actually sit down and eat it makes me 1. more mindful of what I put into my body, 2. appreciate a good meal, and 3. not eat my kids leftover mac n' cheese because that's what's easy! The third reason might just be the biggest reason to take time to prepare and enjoy the food you eat.
Now this isn't a luxury I've always had. Cause let's be straight up honest, meal times with young kids is no joke, and almost always requires a nap right after! But in the recent months, actually sitting and eating my food rather than serving everyone else in my family and eating as I go has made a huge difference in both the quantity and quality of the food I've consumed lately.
Gym time. I've recently hired myself a health/fitness trainer. Now this was quite a stretch and investment for me, as I have been a regular gym goer for several years now. But this extra push has been just what I've needed to further improve my fitness journey and keep me more accountable at the same time. This is not something I would have dared consider even a year ago. And I have caught myself multiple times feeling a little guilty as I've noted the hours spent away at the gym. But boy, let me tell ya, there is nothing like getting endorphins running to help put you in a good mood! Not to mention the health benefits of moving your body are of course going to be obvious. Just do it -- spend time moving every day if you can, even if it's just a short walk with your sleeping baby in a stroller. Exercise is always a win/win!
Join a Group/Club. Now I know this can be a far stretch for some, but having a monthly book club meeting is something I have come to love and look forward to. It doesn't necessarily have to be about reading. I honestly don't even read the book most the time (shhhhh!). The point of this is to get out of your home/comfort zone and socialize. More often than not at our book clubs our conversations have strayed from the actual book and I've found myself confiding in women that have truly become my best friends. I've learned how to become a better mother, wife, and friend by these few short hours spent together.