Your materials for this week:
“Nourishing yourself in a way that helps you blossom in the direction you want to go is attainable, and you are worth the effort.” ~Deborah Day
Week 3′s topic is on taking care of YOU, without the guilt. It’s a loaded topic but so incredibly important for Moms to do. What I hope you get out of this week is a new perspective on what self care really means to you and hope you can incorporate it into your life on a regular basis.
As a reminder:
Let me tell you a little bit about how this will all work. You’ll receive emails from me every weekday (you get the weekends off!). The emails will be your guide to the content for the day and they will link you to this page which will house the videos, materials, and articles for the week. You can skip ahead if you like and read all the way down this page, or you can take it as it comes, it’s up to you.
Don’t miss out! Connecting with each other is such a huge bonus of the program and it really makes such a huge difference in your experience. You can join or connect to the Facebook forum right here.
Thank you again for being here! I’m so glad you are.
Here’s the question: As a mom, is it possible to put yourself first, without the guilt?
I think this is an incredibly important topic, but frankly, I haven’t been very eager to write about it. Mama guilt. This is a struggle of mine!
Here’s my honest answer. YES! I think it’s possible, completely necessary and also really, REALLY hard.
I think a lot of us vow to take care of ourselves AFTER we make everyone breakfast, clean up, throw in a load of laundry, RSVP to the party, get some work done, play with your kids and make the dentist appointments.
I read these words by Mir Kamin and I thought, ‘YES’ that’s exactly right:
“When I find time for my children, I’m a good mom. When I find time for my husband, I’m a good wife. When I find time for clients, I’m a good employee, and when I find time for church or school committees I’m a responsible citizen of my community. When I find time for me I’m…..selfish.”
Last year, my littlest one woke up around 4 or 5 times each night. And every single night I got out of bed and sat with her for sometimes and hour at a time. I desperately needed sleep but rather than ask for help, I did it solo. I knew I was being a good mom to my baby, but I also got sick a lot. My body was desperate for me to take care of it, and yet I just ignored it.
I truly believe we MUST prioritize ourselves in order to be healthy and vibrant. We must do it for our own health and sanity. We must do it in order to be better moms and better people overall.
It’s something to keep working on and keep reminding yourself of, over and over until you believe it’s true. Fill yourself up first, then you are able to give. Can you do anything well from a place of exhaustion or depletion?
Recently, I went to an event in Rhode Island that was fully focused on self care. And wow, it was awesome. A loft filled with amazing women, moms who all came together knowing and pledging that you must be the first to stand up for you – to take care of yourself as if you were taking care of your kids. The best part of this was being inside of a group who openly defined this as integral to their own wellbeing. Sometimes, it feels like we hide our self-care or apologize for it around other women. How often have you downplayed or laughed off your own self care around other moms? We should celebrate it, share in it and encourage each other.
Let’s start to treat own needs in the same way we treat our kids needs. Fill up your own cup and then (and only) then will you be able to give of yourself.
I’m pledging to make this a priority for myself. Will you do that with me?
I used to work out to stay in shape.
I used to work out for something to do after work (imagine that?).
I used to work out to be able to run in that race.
I used to work out to feel my blood moving, work up a sweat and keep my body healthy.
Some of those things are still true. But what’s changed is this: I now think of working out as the ultimate self care, not just something I have to do.
I don’t always have the time that I used to, or get in the workouts that I’d love. But now when I workout, the benefits far outweigh simply getting in shape.
Now, I work out to have more patience and energy for my kids.
I work out to feel more loving and accepting of myself.
I work out to be in a better mood all day.
I work out to handle stress more effectively.
I work out to enjoy what I eat.
I work out to feel strong and healthy and confident.
I work out to sleep better.
Most of all, I LOVE that time away for just me. It’s time away from noise, so I can daydream and think and feel strong, healthy and free. The ultimate self care.
This article written by my friend Kate Flinn popped up on my feed the morning I sat down to write this piece. It was so relevant, I was excited to share it with you.
You know when you meet someone and you immediately feel like you’re going to click with them? I felt that way about Jenn Pici Falk from day one (AND, I met her online first!).
I attended a yoga class of hers a few weeks ago and it was the perfect blend of calming and renewing. I couldn’t help myself from asking her if she would share with us a few poses you can easily incorporate into your day that will help you to feel refreshed and renewed. Thank you Jenn!!
For those in the Boston area, Jenn teaches at Bow Street Yoga in Somerville and Karma Yoga Studio in Cambridge and she also teaches private and small group classes in her home studio space. You can find her online here. (Also, if you’d like to go to one of her classes, let me know and I’ll go with you!).
Unwind & Uplift: Jenn is also hosting what’s going to be an INCREDIBLE yoga retreat in Mexico from May 25th-June 1st called Unwind & Uplift. She’s hosting with another great yogi friend of mine Checka Antifonario and if I could go, I’d be there in a heartbeat. For anyone who wants to invest in their self care, this is an incredible opportunity to kickstart it. You can find more information here.
Real moms answer: What do you do to prioritize and take care of yourself?
I plan a few trips each year where I am not responsible for taking care of anyone but myself. It doesn’t have to be an exotic vacation or an expensive spa, just a couple of days to rest and be “off-duty”. When my kids were really young, sometimes I only got an evening or an afternoon traded with another mom. I’ve learned that these breaks are so important to me staying in touch with my own needs, so that I can keep up with the challenges of our big, happy blended family.
I get up an hour earlier than everyone in my house. It’s my favorite time of the day. I do yoga or some form of exercise ALONE. Then I simply sit for a bit and look out my window, thinking about the day to come. It is very calming to start the day that way. I also make sure that I take time to make some “me” food. I used to purchase and make things for everyone else in the house and not think of me, or worse… think of what I would like to eat at the grocery store but walk past it because I was focused on getting things for my kids or husband. This past year was my “I’m a person too year” and now I make sure that there are “mommy foods” in the house. Foods that I LIKE even if no one else eats them. I don’t know why I used to think of that as selfish, but I did. As I type it now it sounds ridiculous, but hey… it’s honest. Sometimes the kids share these foods with me if they like it but other times they are just for me. Oh and using my favorite scent coming right out of the shower always makes me feel special, sexy, and ready for the day.
Sweet Potato Parmesan Frittata
Holy yum! I am so excited about this recipe from my friend and fellow mama, Persephone Brown.
Preheat oven to 375*
- 8-10 inch cast iron skillet or heavy metal pan that can go in the oven
- 1 dozen eggs
- 1/2-1 cup of cheese (i used Parmesan, use what you like)
- 1 sweet potato, sliced thin
- 1/2 red onion
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt
- rosemary, thyme, oregano
In small pan sauté onions with 1 Tbl of oil and sea salt, as the onions soften, add the sweet potatoes. Add herbs and sea salt to taste (I give each a few shakes). Cover and cook on low, stirring occasionally till sweet potatoes soften. Put vegetables aside to cool. (I pop mine in the fridge). This can totally be done ahead of time, or if you have leftover roasted veggies or any kind of leftover veg in the fridge, use those!
In a big mixing bowl. Beat eggs. Add cheese. Add sauteed veggies.
On the stovetop heat the 1/2 cup oil in your pan, till it is just about to smoke, nice and hot. Pour in the egg mixture nice and easy and keep it over a medium sized flame till the edges start to bubble and firm up a little. Then move the egg mixture to the heated oven.
Bake approx. 15-20 minutes. I check it in 5-10 minute intervals, until it appears firm and the top starts to brown.
Frittata always gets served with a salad in my house and the bacon is optional and occasional!
Recipe contributed by Persephone Brown