Being a parent can mean that time to yourself is limited so that time you do have to yourself make sure you’re incorporating some self-care to keep your body refreshed and ready to combat kid life! Even though it may seem like the right thing to do, routinely dismissing your own needs can have an adverse effect on your overall health. It can make you irritable, fatigued, stressed and susceptible to a full-blown burnout. So, in order to save your health (and sanity), make time for self-care! Taking more time for yourself will equip you with better energy to take care of your kid needs.
In an average day personal space is almost gone, and your kids may rely on your help with almost everything! Maybe you’ve tried to implement a few things, but you can’t be consistent. Or maybe no matter how quiet you are in the morning, your child is immediately by your side, eliminating any hope of a moment of peace before the chaos of the day. Rather than thinking about self-care as one big event, try to think of self-care as small moments throughout the day and this will leave you feeling more satisfied with your day! Although if you can have that dinner out without the kids, take it!
We’ve put together some top self-care tips for busy parents.
If you have less than 5 mins:
- Try mindful toothbrushing
- Set up a bedside beauty salon!
- Write handwritten cards to friends you’ve lost touch with
- Treat yourself to your favourite warm beverage – some ideas: latte, matcha, anything!
- Clean out a kitchen drawer that’s been bothering you. Pull out everything, toss the junk, and get it organized if that gives you peace
- Take off your work clothes or at-home sweats and put on something that truly makes you feel goods, like silk pjs!
- Walk outside and mindfully tune in to your surroundings
If you have 30 mins:
- Borrow your kids colouring book, put on a Spotify playlist you like, and start colouring.
- Write down something that’s bothering you or keeping you up at night. Then start thinking about the steps you need to take in order to complete the goal, working backward. So, if selling your house is something on your mind, think about all of the steps that are getting in your way of doing it (i.e. fix the leaky roof, have the basement repaired, paint the porch, etc.)
- Stash your phone in your pocket and go on a nature walk
- Make yourself some tea and take a soothing bath
- Cue up your favourite work out and get exercising
- Set up a phone date with a friend you’ve lost touch with. Make sure they’re available to chat with you too
- Go to a bookstore and dive into a book or your favourite magazines
- Start and complete a mini art project. Maybe it’s turning the pictures on your phone into an album
Encouraging your kids to develop self-care habits
In an age where social media has created more depressed and anxious teenagers, ensuring your kids understand and appreciate self-care will help them when they are older. Its up to you guys – the parents! To teach your children how to prioritize their mental and physical health. Instilling self-care habits from a young age can help kids manage future life stressors and reach their full potential while reducing the risk of developing mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.
It’s significantly more difficult to create a habit than it is to maintain one. Therefore, the earlier children begin practicing these skills, the easier it will be for these habits to become normal and expected aspects of their lives, rather than short-term New Years resolutions that fade out by early March.
The best self-care habits for kids are those that can be practiced regularly, provide relief from stress, and support the maintenance of a health body and mind. There’s bound to be a self-care habit your child can get excited about!
Here’s a few tips!
- Begin with the basics
This includes things like brushing their teeth, doing 30 minutes of exercise every day and eating wholesome foods. The quicker they pick up the basics, the quicker you can implement other self-care habits.
- Nourish the mind
Encourage your child to ditch the screen and get in touch with their inner self. Activities that encourage mindfulness are useful such as yoga, tai chi and guided imagery. They are powerful tools that help build insight, awareness, and tolerance for discomfort.
- Challenge the body
Exercise is super important for kids and encouraging them to take care of their physical body and mind can help relieve the stress and pressure in their lives.
- Make downtime a priority
Routines that include quiet time, even if it is a few moments being held in a rocking chair, perhaps being sung to or read to, offer opportunities for centring and connection.