Self-Care For Mums

Self-Care For Mums
Some women who worked outside the home have now become the business managers for their self-employed partners. They now juggle many roles – wife/partner, mother, daughter, friend, office manager, bill collector, secretary. It is exhausting and they find they have no time for themselves and aren’t sure who they are anymore. They have put aside their own personal hopes and dreams to support their partner in their business. They feel like they have lost their identity. Giving up their work life equals a loss of social interaction. Some would describe it as surrendering their life to put their husband’s business interests first.There is grief to work through. There is also a need to be mindful of self-care. When women juggle lots of things, our needs are often the first thing that we ignore. We become irritable, tired and stressed. As mums, it is crucial we look after our emotional and physical well-being. In taking care of ourselves, this has a flow-on effect to the rest of the family, and for you.

 

So here are some ideas to manage care for yourself.

  • Exercise, even for just a short time, clears the head (and helps our sanity!) Walking, swimming, tai chi. Even dancing around the house has proven fun benefits – watch out, though, as the family may want to join in.
  • Reading or listening to your favourite music or podcasts, or bingeing on the latest Netflix.
  • Healthy Eating. Now I’m going to be honest here. I try to eat fruit and veggies each day, but I have a definite weakness for chocolate cake and mango smoothies. It’s okay to have the occasional sweet. It’s when the sweet food replaces a healthier option on a regular basis that it can have effects on your health.
  • Allocate time in your day just for you. It may be for 10 minutes in the morning, it could be 30 minutes for lunch, then 20 minutes in the afternoon. As mums, we can model restfulness to our kids.
  • Green space is so important for our mental health. Go for a walk or have a picnic in a park, sit by a lake and feel the calmness as the water weaves past.
  • Catch up with friends, have a good laugh. Laughter lightens the load.
  • Try some of the free meditation apps to help soothe the mind and calm the body.
  • Sleep is crucial to help us function daily. Research has shown that sleep improves our mood, lessens stress, boosts our memory and contributes to a healthier you.

 

I know it’s easy to say “Get more sleep” but much harder to do. Thoughts about work creep in during the quiet times at night; wanting me-time after the kids are in bed; children waking at night; yes, the endless list of things that keep us awake. Have a night time routine for the family prior to bed time. Put on some gentle music, or read to help still the body and mind. Have a nap during the day, this may help revive some energy. Use some of the other ideas in this article to help wind down for the night.

If stress becomes overwhelming, seek counselling support to help understand what is happening for you, what the triggers are for your stress, so that you can manage these experiences and move forward.

Janice Williams

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