You’re probably thinking “what in the world does self care have to do with organizing your life??” Stay with me.
We work so hard to make everyone happy and to make life go smoothly. We do the shopping, the laundry, the cleaning, the cooking, the driving everyone from here to there and back again. We wipe noses, bottoms, and tears. We go to bed so tired that we can’t sleep because all we can think about is all the things we have to do the next day. We plan parties, playdates, real dates and holiday celebrations. But sometimes we forget to organize time for ourselves. Self care is not selfish.
Making time for yourself often feels like the last item on the priority list, but it shouldn’t be. Just like spending time with your spouse or significant other, having time for you is not bad or wrong or selfish. It’s necessary to recharge our batteries. I love my family more than anything, but I need time on my own occasionally, and that doesn’t make me a bad wife or a bad mom. Here are a few ways that I make time for self care.
Each year my three closest girlfriends and I make it a point to have a weekend away together. The kids stay at home with their dads and we have a weekend of undistracted conversation and fun. We try to make it a pretty inexpensive trip and just enjoy a lot of “chick chat” as the hubs would say. Having a few days off from all my responsibilities as a wife and mom helps me recharge and regroup. I come back rested, happier and more than ready to be back at home with my family.
Women’s Bible Study
I meet with a group of women twice a month for Bible Study and it’s so renewing each time. We have good conversation and I learn so much. It’s a planned event so the hubs knows to expect that on those nights, he has bedtime duty. What I like is that it has a purpose so it’s different from just regular girl time. If you aren’t interested in a faith-based group, this could be a book club, a cooking class or a yoga class. The idea is simply a regularly-scheduled purposeful group.
Time With Friends
Whether it’s meeting for breakfast on a Saturday or dessert after work on a weeknight, I try to meet up with my girlfriends on a fairly regular basis. I crave that time where I can laugh and talk with the girls. It’s important to have times of undistracted conversation, especially if you are at home full-time. Yes, a playdate for the kids can be a fun time to chat with another mom, but we all know there’s no such thing as a distraction-free conversation when the kids are around.
For those of us with an introverted side, one of the most important aspects of self care is time spent alone. As much as I love to be with my friends and family, I also need time on my own to fully recharge. Sometimes I’ll go to the bookstore and browse the shelves. Occasionally I go to a movie alone. I spend so much of my week listening to my children babble away and chatting with my husband after work that sometimes I just need quiet.
I’m lucky to have a husband who makes it possible for me to spend time with my girlfriends or on my own to refuel my tank. I make sure that he gets his time with the guys too. We spend plenty of time as a family and as a couple, but we both understand the importance of being off-duty. If you don’t have a partner that can give you these breaks, consider asking a family member, hiring a sitter, or trading off with another mom. Just don’t neglect yourself because you think it’s not important!
How do you make time for yourself?