I don’t like the term self care.
It conjures up images of spending hours soaking in a bubble bath with a magazine. Let’s be serious, it’s completely unrealistic and even if we did have the time to do that, the relaxation feeling would last until your kids tried to climb in with you. 7 minutes, maybe?
Self care feels frivolous and unnecessary, as in luxurious activities you only do when you have hours to yourself. Instead, we need to reframe the word so that self care means taking responsibility for your core desired needs. Self responsibility. THAT feels more realistic and doable.
Yesterday I was texting back and forth with friends. These woman all have little ones and we were comparing how long it’s been since we got our hair done, waxed our eyebrows and had 5 minutes to ourselves to shower. The shared stories were making me laugh and feel connected and understood on a day that felt endless and tiring.
The thing is, self care IS important! Ridiculously important actually. But instead of hours pampering ourselves in luxurious ways, we need to be able to take a shower, pluck our eyebrows, nourish ourselves with healthy food and move our bodies.
Basics! We need the basics.
The days that I skip my shower to get out the door, forgo yoga because there isn’t enough time or order out instead of cook in, I end the day feeling restless and defeated because I’m giving up the things that are important to me. I’m failing on the responsibility I have to myself to feel human and feel good.
What we need as moms and busy women are strategies that will help us to take care of ourselves in a loving and real way in the midst of our busy and chaotic days.
- Focus only on the most important things. Let’s stop thinking of self care as the big trips to the spa and let’s talk about the things you can do everyday that make you feel important, grounded and taken care of. Sit down and think about your priorities. What’s important to you? Is it working out everyday? Eating healthy? Having more energy? Better sleep? Feeling organized? List them all out. Then, pick just one or two areas to focus on and do something small everyday to move the needle.
- Let go of perfectionism. It’s doing you no good at all. Let’s agree to drop the ‘if you can’t do it all the way, don’t even bother trying‘ mentality. Instead of skipping a shower because you’re short on time, jump in and let your hair dry naturally. Instead of skipping a workout because you can’t make it to the gym, get down on the floor while your kids are playing and stretch out. Not a lot of time to cook? Skip ordering out and make a quick stir fry. I use all my leftover veggies and mix them with quinoa or rice and a little lemon juice and call it dinner. It’s fast and delicious.
I wanted to share with you my go-to breakfast in the morning. Here’s a simple meal idea you can have up your sleeve for whenever you’re rushing out the door in the morning and don’t feel like you have time to eat. It’s totally possible to nourish your basic needs (eating real, healthy foods) without adding in tons of extra time.
Homemade Breakfast Cereal
- Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Oats
- Shredded unsweetened coconut
Start with about a half up of oats and pile the rest on top. Finish with almond milk or regular milk and you have a breakfast cereal that will keep you full and satisfied all morning. Try with blueberries and strawberries in the summer!