Let’s face it. Our jobs are rewarding, but sometimes it can be downright tough. From explosive diapers, messy kitchens, overflowing laundry piles, and ear-piercing screams. It’s no wonder you are all out of sorts!
As a mother of five children and I have had my share of bad days. I would often deprive myself of the self-care I needed as I would try desperately to meet my own unrealistic expectations.
Today, I would like to share the top seven self-care tips for busy moms that have been helping me and hope that you can benefit from them too!
Why Do Moms Need a Break?
Our days are filled with endless tasks and it can be chaotic and stressful. Our routines consist of laundry, house cleaning, meal planning, grocery shopping, cooking, dropping kids off to school or homeschooling, the list goes on!
So really, does this question even need answering? Yes, it does! We often don’t take a moment out of the day to reflect on just how much we accomplish. Maybe a lot of what we do, we dismiss. We don’t believe it is worthy enough to be considered hard work since there is no paycheck coming.
Instead, our earnings consist of our family wearing clean clothes, preparing a hot meal, having a clean house, or having happy well-behaved kids! But, what happens when we are too drained, exhausted, or mentally overloaded to recognize the fruits of our labor? It’s very hard to see the reward in what we do when we are not taking the time to care for ourselves in this process.
What Are The Benefits?
Self-care has a load of fulfilling benefits, let alone the act itself is rewarding! Here are a few benefits that will help us stressed moms reach the goals we create for ourselves and our families.
Self-care helps reduce stress and in turn, all the negative side-effects that are caused by stress including low energy levels, moodiness, constant worry, racing thoughts, forgetfulness, overwhelm, just to name a few. Check out webmd for a more comprehensive list.
When you take the time out of your day to practice self-care you will notice that you have more energy! If you feel your day is too busy to add a new habit, think again! Self-care practices can actually increase your productivity as you will be more energized and refreshed to move on and not held back by the negative effects of stress.
Models Self-Care for our Children
Lastly, I can’t leave out what us moms are most passionate about, the benefits for our children! Modeling the importance of self-care for your children will teach them to do the same for themselves so they will avoid being over stressed.
What Are The 7 Daily Self-Care Tips?
There are many self-care strategies you can practice. Some will fill you up more than others so it is important to try a variety of strategies to discover which ones work for you best. Here are 7 daily self-care tips for stressed moms:
Self-Care Tip #1: Learn to Say No
There are obvious tasks that we have to take on to keep the household running such as preparing meals, changing diapers, and other musts. But when it comes to other things, and you are already stressed and overwhelmed, you must learn to choose your battles wisely.
Sometimes playdates, family gatherings, extracurricular activities, and whatever else we put on our plate, can be too much. When we recognize that this might be the case it’s important to take the time to really consider what should take precedence and what to put off for another time.
We must set our boundaries early on to avoid motherhood burnout, and never feel guilty about that! Our jobs can be tough and if we overextend ourselves, then that next upcoming temper tantrum might not only be our child’s.
Self-Care Tip #2: Let Go of Perfection
Is the need for constant perfection ruining your life? Strive for your best and count your achievements instead of focusing on your shortcomings. Keep in mind that striving for perfection can often work against us and slow us down from the big picture successes. I can and become stressed and irritable when something didn’t turn out quite as good as I imagined.
I often then become my own bully and demand a better result from myself working endless hours on a minor project or even scratch what I created only to begin all over again. In that process, my goals of being a peaceful and compassionate mother are thrown to the wind. We need to be kinder to ourselves and let go of perfection!
If you think the need for perfection is running havoc on your life and happiness, check out my post on How to Not be a Perfectionist Mom: Identifying 9 traits.
Self-Care Tip #3: Practice Self-Compassion
We will fail, and we will fail often. That is okay, we are not alone! When we fall short of our own expectations, we can talk to ourselves as you would a friend and pick yourself back up. Ask yourself what you need at that moment. Maybe it’s a good cry, or maybe it’s an adult conversation?
You can read more about self-compassion here.
Self-Care Tip #4: Self-Check in
By taking a moment for a check-in you can come to know when to practice self-care before the stress takes over. Sometimes we don’t catch the signs and other times we deliberately ignore them because gosh darn this laundry isn’t going to do itself.
One of the ways you can extend your practice of checking in with yourself is by taking up the habit of journaling. By journaling you are able to express how you feel by sharing your thoughts and observations on paper.
If you are in need of a self-check in worksheet, check out the Best Self-Care Kit For Stressed Moms. It’s a 12 page PDF download I created for stressed moms, and it’s free!
Self-Care Tip #5: Practice Mindfulness
Did you know when you are doing those mundane everyday activities you could be practicing mindfulness?
Practicing mindfulness is something you can do to give your mind that much needed rest and relish in the present moment. With the number of to-dos on our plate, we mothers can have an especially have a hard time with being present. When it comes to spending time with our kids, and our mind is going a mile a minute, we can miss out on being truly present and enjoying our time with our children.
Self-Care Tip #6: Reflecting On The Positives
I spent so much of my life worrying about my children. If they had a hard time coping with something, I would worry. If they struggled with their homework, I would worry. I would go down every deep dark rabbit hole that I possibly could. For what?!
We could think of a million different possibilities and it still not play out the way we thought it would. And why would we want to waste so much time doing so, only to be adding stress to our lives?
Instead, make a list of the things that are going right in your life and reflect on those. Often, we get overwhelmed by our worries and allow them to overshadow all the good that has happened to us and our families.
If you have a negative mindset, seek to change it. Begin to reflect on the positives. Reflect on the accomplishments you have made in this busy and sometimes overwhelming time in your life. Your worries will began to dissipate and will no longer as big as you allowed them to be in your mind.
Self-Care Tip #7: Let Go, and Let God
So, remember to pray and give it all to God. His yoke easy and His burden is light. It is important to remember that when we have done all we can we let God do the rest! Let Him take over and don’t spend any more time worrying or thinking about things out of your control. One thing you can do about this is to pay attention to your thoughts. If you took the time to pray remember to take a step back and let God take over.
Continue to guard your thoughts so that you are carrying out the plan on your part. What good would it be to say you will trust yet continue to think wildly about whatever bothers you a moment later. Instead, stand guard of your thoughts. Let go and Let God!
Here is a “Prayer of Letting Go” to help you let go of your worries and the things you don’t have control over. Let it be a prayer from your heart as well as an affirmation to your trust in Him.
Dear Lord Jesus,
I keep getting weighed down by worry
My burden becomes too heavy and too much to handle
Help me to recognize the things I cannot control
Help me to trust in you and remember that you have control
You know what is best for our family and can see and do all things
Dear Lord, I specifically ask your help with:
I release this worry to your care and I know you are capable of turning all things to good.
Jesus, I trust in You,
Sometimes we feel that there is not enough of us to go around. When we overexert ourselves we often become overwhelmed, exhausted, and irritable. We are often not our best selves and it can affect our relationships with the people we love the most.
By providing ourselves with some well-deserved self-compassion by practicing self-care, we can reduce our stress, achieve more goals, and model its importance to those we love.
Practice it. Model it. Achieve it!