Are you a mom? YES, moms need MORE self-care right now.
Staying home with my three littles has brought an unparalleled opportunity for family time. We play, laugh, and cuddle. And there are moments I know I’ll cherish for the rest of my life.
BUT it has also brought new challenges. I’m homeschooling young kids while trying to keep a one-year-old from hurting herself every minute…and work when I can.
Can we say mental health challenge. As in, what is my name? What day of the week is it? And why do I feel overwhelmed all the time?
Oh wait, I know why.
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For weeks, I was emotionally crashing by the afternoon. And I ate enough sugar to fill the Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory.
Finally, I realized a lack of self-care was the culprit.
While (thankfully), I got up early to take care of myself, the rest of the day was spent ping-ponging from one kind of job to another. Work, homeschool, cook, take care of kids, work, clean, etc….on endless repeat. My self-care had diminished alarmingly. And it was taking its toll.
Has this happened to you?
When was the last time you relaxed? Or took a moment away from the kids? It’s not easy to do in these new circumstances.
Fortunately, I’ve been experimenting and taking notes like my life depended on it. So, below are simple tips for mom’s self-care at home that work beautifully for the times.
Scheduled Self-Care Makes All the Difference
First, check out these easy morning to night ideas to incorporate into your day!
1. The Victory Hour (Early Morning)
The Victory Hour is simply a term for getting up early enough to put yourself first.
Early morning is often the only time moms have for self-care. So, get up before your family wakes and do things that nourish you, like exercise, meditation, and journaling. It’s guaranteed silence that primes you for how the rest of your day will go.
Truthfully, this hour to myself has made me exponentially more intentional, fit, and calm. I TREASURE it.
2. A Morning Break (Mid-Morning)
At my home, the bulk of our important work gets done early, but without a pause, it was leading to intense burnout later on. My kids like it when I’m not melting down by five o’clock.
So, are you taking scheduled breaks throughout the day?
Now, no matter what I’m doing, I disengage for a ten-minute break mid-morning. It’s scheduled and routine. Usually, that’s walking outside to physically separate and breathe fresh air. But if that isn’t possible, reading works well too.
3. The Power Hour (Afternoon)
Like the morning, an afternoon pause is crucial to how productive and joyful the rest of the day is.
Remember, downtime is necessary to refuel and refocus.
“Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day is the rest we take between two deep breaths.”Etty Hillesum
What are you doing to recharge in the afternoon?
The “Power Hour” is a scheduled time mid-day to do something for pleasure.
Here are easy self care (at home) ideas for moms:
- Read for PLEASURE
- Take a walk (in nature if possible!)
- Indulge in light tv
- Listen to music you love
- Take a bath or hot shower
- Drink a cup of tea
- Listen to a podcast
- Make a gratitude list
- Give yourself a manicure
- Do yoga poses
- Call someone you love
Now, an hour may be too long or not feasible every day. So, do what you can and incorporate even twenty minutes when possible.
Also, you may not feel you need it at the time but do it anyway! The mental break resets you for a calm and engaging night ahead. You’ll notice a big difference later in the day.
4. Night Self Care (Before Bed)
Finally, be sure that you’re protecting your peace before your head hits the pillow at night.
Avoid the news like the plague at night!
Instead, try baths, gratitude journaling, and conversations with your partner. They are easy ways to wind down for a fabulous night’s sleep, ready for the great day ahead.
Need more ideas? Check out How to Create a Soothing Self Care Routine
Next, Self Care Tips for Life Balance
5. Social Connection
Apply physical distance not social distance!
As moms, it can feel that we’re alone in our struggles without the proximity of others.
So, keep in touch with friends and family any way that you can. I’ve found that seeing someone in person (6 feet apart) gives the best mental boost, but technology fills in the gaps.
Related Post: How to Make Friends as an Adult
6. Variety is the Spice of Life
We all go a little crazy when the days look the same. But, a simple walk in a new environment gives us a ridiculous boost of energy and happiness.
So, make sure that your weekdays look slightly different and the weekends look even more so.
For weekdays during COVID-19, try these occasionally:
- Safe car outings and picnics
- Takeout coffee or lunch
- A run or walk in a new park
- Game nights
For weekends, really spice it up:
- Movie night (we watch movies new to us)
- Church online
- Cleaning time (work together!)
- Find a new park and take a picnic (or eat in the car)
- Big family walk
- Fancy at-home coffee (mom and dad)
- Morning brunch
- A read-aloud tradition or fun podcast. Read this article for ideas!
- Pizza night
- At home date night
7. Healthy Meals
I’d be remiss not to mention health in at home self-care for moms! Health is wealth.
It’s easy to start eating mac and cheese for lunch every day during quarantine. But, a big protein-packed salad goes a long way in giving you the energy you need to finish the day strong in your commitments.
At least make that a side of veggies! See 95+ Healthy Dinner Meals for ideas!
8. Lower Expectations
My six-year-old daughter does not need to read like a fifth-grader when COVID-19 is over. Furthermore, if my son’s bored in math, we’ll be ok. And if I get only half of my work done, I’ll problem solve.
Often, high expectations are a good thing. But for moms, they can also stand in the way of your peace and happiness.
So, breathe. Take a step back, and remember that you do what you can with what you have. If the kids watched tv and ate cookies all day, it’s still a win because they’re ALIVE. Try again tomorrow.
9. Get Creative With Help
For many, motherhood is now overwhelming because we’ve lost help with our kids.
Except, that’s not completely true.
We simply need to get creative. Here are some ideas to get others involved!
If your partner is home right now, use it! Have him help with meals or break times during the week. We find that if it’s in the schedule, it happens without fuss. (And if your partner’s not home, he can still help more!)
Additionally, if you’re overwhelmed with homeschooling, get flexible. Now, my husband helps on Saturdays and I don’t feel it’s all on my shoulders.
Grandparents & Relatives
No, they can’t physically be around. BUT your kids CAN engage online when you need a break. Simply have them read together, or older kids connect through online chess or word games.
Pick up and delivery services eliminate a TON of stress and time.
How else are you getting help? Share in the comments below!
Next, check out this video for a few quick tips from me:
Something to Consider With at Home Self Care
Mental health is more important than ever during these uncertain times.
So, do not neglect this part of your life! Take care of your mind and body and it will take care of you!
What are your favorite self care strategies for moms?
Other mom & self-care posts to enjoy…
- How to Be a Happy Mom, Backed By Science
- How to Create a Self-Care Checklist
- What to do When You Need a Self-Care Day