Something happens when you become a mother: you not only bring a new life [that you love unconditionally] into this world, but you take a back seat to their needs. I too did this when Joey was born, then Anthony, but slowly I’ve found little ways to still take time and do things for me. I want to be the best me for my boys, and that means I can’t always take the back seat— there’s room me in the front seat too! Living a healthy lifestyle not only means that I’m eating lots of good for you foods, but I’m doing things that make me happy. That’s the premise of today’s post: self-care for moms. Because as the saying goes, if Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy! So here are 5 self-care tips I’ve found have made me a happier, healthier Mom.
1. Embrace your personal style, even if it’s not trendy right now. I have MY style—and don’t really stray from it. Now if you’ve been in my life for a while you know the Katie Serbinski look. In the fall and winter, it’s black workout pants and a pullover fleece. In the spring and summer, it’s jogging shorts and a short-sleeved t-shirt. Granted I change the “look” when I’m going to church, a conference, or a party, but for the most part you’ll find me in multiple colored fleeces and t’s that I can interchange for my day to day. I might not be the best dressed when I leave my house, but you know what? I’m comfortable. And happy with comfort vs. style at this point in my life.
2. Be specific in your needs and wants with your partner [or support system]. I ask my husband to do specific tasks, even if it’s something I think is a no-brainer. This was a hard pill for me to swallow, especially when Ted and I first were married. I expected him to read my mind when it came to planning date nights or buying me flowers or emptying our bathroom trash bin— all of which he happily did once I told him I wanted those things [minus flowers, I’m not a flowers girl]. And now my wants have changed to enjoying a cup of coffee alone. ALONE! So telling him what I like and reminding him every now and again has been a healthy change in our relationship. I just have to remember to tell him nicely!
3. Take care of your skin. No more tanning for this gal, and yep, I’ve started using anti-aging creams. There have been many nights when I fall asleep on the couch with mascara ON. Eeeek!!! Or many nights where I’m not getting much sleep at all. To counter this, I’ve started taking greater care of my skin— or so that’s what I think I’m hoping to do with redefine products by Rodan and Fields. The eye cream alone is my lifesaver! And the wash and lotion routine is both soothing before bed and refreshing when I start the day. This may seem like a no-brainer to you beauty pro’s out there but this has been a game changer for me! I might not feel rested physically, but I still want my skin to look that way.
4. Spend a little extra money on something that makes you happy. You’ll laugh when I tell you what I spend extra on…. MASCARA! Just call me big spender! Anyways, when I’m wearing my yoga pants and oversized sweatshirt, I still feel like one hot momma when my eyes pop! Right now I’m hooked on this mascara from Urban Decay. If you feel sexy when you’re wearing lululemon pants, driving a Mustang, or drinking a fancy bottle of champagne, I say spend the extra and do what makes you feel happy! Ted is very grateful my big expense is mascara instead of a flashy car.
5. Step away from parenting duties when you can. You need and deserve a break! I skip out on bath and bedtime every now and then. I know that sounds harsh, but read on… if you’ve been with small children all day you know how gassed you feel post dinner. When Ted is home, we’ve started a new evening routine: we eat together as a family, he takes the kids upstairs for baths, and I go for a walk [or if the weather is crummy I go in the basement and do a 30 minute workout]. I take time for me and do some type of physical activity. This actually rejuvenates me for the evening— which is when I work on Mom to Mom Nutrition things. It not only helps with my mood, but it gives the guys some alone time too. And if Ted isn’t home, I turn on the TV and pour a glass of wine. It’s just as effective! [that was a joke—I do bath and bedtime, and enjoy it!].
Granted everyone’s life situation is different and you might not be able to step away from mom duties or have the funds to buy fancy poo mascara. But there’s definitely something deep down that makes YOU happy [outside of being mom]. My hope is that you find that “happy place” and make it part of everyday YOU! You family will love you more for it!