If you’re a Mom, Self-Care may seem like the most selfish thing in the world to you. However, it’actually the single most important thing you can do to be a better Mom and improve your parenting. This article will explain how self-care can actually improve your parenting skills (and prevents melt-downs!).
As a Mom, self-care is probably the lowest item on your radar. You’re busy! There’s no time to indulge in eating healthy or spending time with your husband. You’ve got laundry to fold, dinner to make, and things to do!
But what if I told you that self-care is the single-most important thing you could do to be a better Mom?
Avoiding SRM Syndrome (Screaming Raging Mom)
It’s all about avoiding what I call the Screaming Raging Mom Syndrome, also known as SRM. Ugh, don’t you hate when you get that? It usually happens when the kids are particularly “happy” and Mom is tired, hungry and has dealt with so much crap, that one last thing will set her over the edge. Once SRM sets in, it’s scary. Mom becomes someone she doesn’t even recognize and the kids (and probably her partner) get yelled at. Needless to say, if Mom gets SRM everyone suffers, including Mom.
Think about the last time you lost your cool. Before things turned south, how were you feeling? Were you tired, hungry, and frustrated? Would things have gone differently if you were feeling at the top of your game, in a playful, happy mood?
If you ask my husband, he’ll tell you the best way to prevent SRM is for the kids to behave. If they would just do what they’re told, everything would be fine. I agree with him. If life was perfect and my kids were robots, that would work great. But we all know that ain’t gonna happen.
The second best way to prevent it…is you guessed it…self care!!! If you’re in a good place, feeling well and happy, Mom breakdowns are much less likely to happen. And that, my friend, makes you a better Mom.
Letting Go of the Guilt
Knowing that taking care of ourselves would make us better parents is one thing. Doing, it, however is a different story. Even knowing that self-care would make us better parents, many of can’t do it. We have a mental block since we feel guilty taking care of ourselves when there’s so much laundry to fold.
It’s about being your best
When you feel guilty about self-care, I want you to remember that self-care is not about being selfish. Actually, it’s the opposite of selfishness. It’s about taking care of yourself so you can be your best self for your kids. To nurture your kids you must first nurture yourself.
Self-care doesn’t need to take a lot of time. Find one thing you can do today that will make you smile. It can be as small as enjoying a cup of tea in the morning before anyone wakes up. Whatever you chose to do, do it with a clear conscience, knowing that taking care of yourself will not only make your happier and healthier, but it’ll make you a better Mom.
I like to keep a list of things that give me joy because depending on my day, sometimes I can squeeze in different things.
If you’d like a beautiful pdf with some ideas, please join the Balanced Working Mom’s free resource library.
Here are some simple ideas:
- Drink tea or coffee. To really make it special, buy it!
- Read a book or listen to an audiobook (I sometimes do this even when the kids are around using a headset)
- Stretch or do yoga
- Turn on some soothing music
- Light a candle (or if young ones are around, an electric candle)
- Ask your partner to watch the kids for 15 minutes and lay down (my favorite! Just a few minutes can do wonders…)
- Text a friend a joke or something silly your kid did
- Write in your journal (or start one….)
- Buy something inexpensive but lovely from Etsy. You can find cute things for less than $10! Be warned: it is addictive.
- Diffuse or sniff a yummy essential oil
- Go for a short walk. Even a few minutes makes a huge difference!
- Look at photos of your kids when they were infants. So fun!
- Meditate or sit in silence for a few minutes
- Listen to a podcast
If you’d like to learn more about what self care is, read The Truth About What Self-Care Really Is.
Please take some time to relax before SRM strikes…again! You deserve it, my hardworking Mom.
In the comments, let me know if you feel guilty when you take time for yourself.
Wishing you joy on your journey,
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