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Being a mom is an incredible journey filled with joy, love, and unforgettable moments. But let’s be real for a moment: it can also be seriously challenging. So, I have a few self-care tips for moms to share with you today.
From juggling endless responsibilities to tending to the needs of your little ones, it’s easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of motherhood and forget about taking care of yourself. That’s why emphasizing self-care is absolutely crucial for moms.
In fact, one survey analysis of over 60,000 women showed that of those women, at least 50% felt stressed, 41% felt worried, 28% felt depressed, 26% felt sadness, and 19% felt angry.
And here’s the thing, there is no cookie-cutter approach to self-care. That’s because you might be a working mom (aka — you have a professional career), a stay-at-home mom, a single mom, a depressed mom, a new mom, and on and on the list of differences goes.
When you’re a mom, making time for self-care can seem impossible, especially when you’re mentally feeling overwhelmed. But, by prioritizing your own well-being, you’ll not only recharge your own batteries but also become a happier and more present mom for your little darlings. So, let’s dive in and explore why self-care is a game-changer for all of you amazing moms out there!
Featuring: Self Care in a Box by TheraBox
Make pampering yourself with care, love, and relaxation simple and in the comfort of your own home.
25 REALISTIC Self-Care Tips for Moms
Journaling is a therapeutic way for moms (especially if there are mental health issues at play) to express their thoughts, feelings, and emotions without being judged.
Plus, writing down your thoughts and feelings can serve as an emotional outlet, allowing you to release pent-up emotions and gain a sense of relief. As you journal, you might also find it’s an excellent way to self-reflect and learn from these feelings and thoughts.
Some may even be able to notice patterns, triggers, and recurring thoughts or behaviors that may be affecting your mental well-being — thus offering insights into how you can take better care of your mental health. By improving your mental health, you will begin to feel much lighter, leading to a happier motherhood journey.
2) Prioritize Sleep
Don’t underestimate the power of getting a good night’s sleep. Better sleep allows your body and mind to rest and recharge. It replenishes your energy levels, making you feel more alert and ready to tackle the day’s tasks.
Sleep also plays a crucial role in supporting your immune system. When you’re well-rested, your body is better equipped to fight off infections, viruses, and other illnesses, keeping you healthier and reducing the chances of getting sick — which we all know is a MUST for moms.
3) Practice Doing The Inner-Work
Motherhood can open the door to a range of intense emotions that you may have closed off, including joy, love, and fulfillment, but it can also lead to stress, anxiety, and feelings of being overwhelmed or depressed.
By addressing unresolved issues from their own childhood or past experiences in life, moms can become more present, patient, and attuned to their children’s needs and their own needs. This can foster healthier parent-child relationships and improve the overall quality of parenting.
Whether you choose to embark on the inner-work journey through Licensed Therapy or on your own — it’ll be work worth doing. And, if you are opting to begin this journey on your own, I have a wonderful resource created by a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who specializes in cycle-breaking, healing generational traumas, and childhood development; it’s called “Let Go of Your Past Hurts“.
4) Have a Daily Routine
A routine creates a sense of stability and structure for you and your children. More stability and predictability means less stress and less tantrums. Now, life isn’t perfect and sometimes you won’t be able to stick to your routine.
However, in general, if you follow the same daily routine it can make it easier for you to squeeze in time for yourself if and when needed (especially if it’s part of the routine).
5) Take a Bubble Bath
Bathing in warm water and a soothing ambiance can help you unwind, release stress, and rejuvenate both your body and mind. Something every mom needs after a long day of parenting and dealing with family life.
It can also be a time for introspection and self-reflection. And if you’re into multitasking, grab your journal so you can knock out some journaling while you’re relaxing in the bath (this might be the best self-care tip there is).
If taking a bath doesn’t resonate with you, explore other activities or practices that align with your preferences and needs.
6) Take 10 mins of Daily Quiet Time
Having a moment of quiet seems like an impossible task when you’re a mom and you’re raising littles. However, these daily 10 minutes of quiet time might be the difference between feeling like you can get through the day vs being unable to control your triggers and totally losing it on your kid.
This could look like:
- Taking 10 minutes to hide in the bathroom
- Setting your kids up for independent play while you take 10 minutes for yourself
- Popping in some LOOP Earplugs to tone down the noise (we’ll talk about these more down below)
7) Wake Up Before the Kids
For some moms, waking up before their kids to enjoy a warm cup of tea or simply being able to drink their coffee while it’s still hot is the best thing for their self-care.
However, this might be impossible for those of you who have early risers like I do. In that case, enjoy your sleep and let them be your alarm clock.
8) Move Your Body
Movement and physical activity offer numerous benefits for your mental health which is why it’s great for self-care.
Regular movement can help moms manage stress and challenges by releasing endorphins and lowering stress levels. If stress is controlled, chances are you’ll notice enhanced mood and less depression or anxiety.
If you like to work out with friends, you can also use this as a time to socialize and connect with your pals while moving your body.
And though physical activity can’t necessarily prevent sleep deprivation, it can improve your sleep quality.
9) Ditch the Household Chores
Alright, I want you to take some deep breaths right now, because if you’re someone who NEEDS the house to be spotless 24/7 — I know this one is already giving you some anxiety.
Now, I am not advocating that you let your house be a trainwreck all day long. However, if keeping up with the chores while trying to mom, be the errand runner, scheduler, baby feeder, etc… is doing more hard than good to your overall health — then practice letting one chore on your list get done later.
For example, there are dishes in the sink after lunch, but you need to fold the laundry and vacuum the house before a visitor arrives and your kids are screaming for your help. The pressure is on and you feel yourself turning red. Stop, breathe, and let one of the chores go. Just let it go and rest assured you can get to it later.
I know it will feel so stressful the first few times (it did for me too), but believe me, ‘this skill’ of letting go is one of the best self care skills worth prioritizing (even if it’s just for the hectic season you’re in).
10) Get Comfortable Saying ‘NO’
Saying ‘NO’ is a boundary. You’ll want to get comfortable establishing them and saying ‘No’ to things that don’t serve you. That in itself is an awesome form of self care.
Take some time today and practice saying “no” without guilt when you’re feeling overwhelmed or need some downtime.
11) Go On Date Nights
This one won’t necessarily apply to our single parents out there unless you’re dating, but to all other parents — emphasize those date nights.
As a happily married wife and mama who really struggled with this, I can tell you it’s so important. Your relationship with your partner is the rock in parenthood. And when you’re both not connected, that rock starts to crumble.
Your date nights don’t even need to be complicated. You can focus on simple things at home after you put your kids down or get a trusted sitter to watch the kids for a couple of hours while you both refill your cups. Practicing a little self care together is a great way to feel connected.
12) Read a New Book
If you enjoy reading, nows the time to carve out some time to pick up a new one. You can even attend a local book club! One of my friends use to host a “books and babies” our of her home where moms would bring their babies and then chat about the book of the month — I thought it was such a cute way to get a little self care in while having your little ones close by.
13) Get Out of The House
Sometimes, a simple change of scenery is all you need to feel a little whole again. Especially, for all of us stay at home moms.
Don’t feel like this needs to be an extravagant outing either. It could be a walk around the block, going on a new hike, grocery shopping at a new store, etc…
14) Treat Yourself
Taking time for yourself allows you to recharge and rejuvenate. Oftentimes, we settle on the small things because it’s what’s practical and what we can simply manage.
However, from time to time (as often as you can), it’s important to treat yourself a little. By doing so you also create an opportunity for your children to spend time with other family members or caregivers, which can foster strong relationships and provide your children with diverse perspectives and experiences.
Treating yourself could be:
- Getting your hair done
- Going to a spa
- Getting a facial
- Shopping for some new clothes
- Going out with some friends
- the list goes on and on….
15) Ask For Help
Asking for help can be hard, but one rule: never hesitate to reach out to professionals or support systems if you’re struggling with your mental health.
Now, you might be wondering how asking for help can be a self care tool, but trying to handle everything on your own can lead to increased stress, burnout, or feelings of isolation.
Showing yourself enough grace and honesty to admit when you need help is an act of caring for yourself in a very genuine way.
16) Find Ways to Laugh
Laughter has numerous mental and emotional health benefits. It can reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, and tension, providing relief from negative emotions.
Laughing also stimulates creativity, enhances cognitive functions, and improves focus and productivity. In fact, check out this study here that showed how the presence of hospital clowns to adolescents hospitalized for a variety of reasons showed benefits to their psychological well-being (due to the joy and laughter they experienced).
So, lighten up a little and find more ways to laugh. Watch some silly videos, enjoy some time being silly with your kids, go out to a comedy show, have fun joking with your partner, and more.
17) Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
I know, especially as a mom whose life revolves around her children, just how hard it can be to get out of your comfort zone and just try new things.
But, trying new things and getting out of that comfort zone pushes you to learn and develop new skills, grow as an individual, and boost your confidence. All positive pieces when it comes to focusing on self-care activities.
Maybe you’re afraid to go to the beach because of your stretch marks. Girl, give yourself permission to live — grab a cute swimsuit (this one’s even leakproof!) and get out there, enjoy your time with yourself, with your family, and with your stretch marks.
18) Try a New Recipe
If you love cooking or baking, whipping up a new tasty recipe could be one of the easiest ways to fulfill some self-care needs.
You could even turn it into a celebratory night where you bake something special just for you, talk about showing yourself some self-love!
19) Implement 5-Minute Breaks
There will never be enough time to do all the things we want. However, you can still break down that time (as little as 5 minutes) and fit in small increments of filling your cup each day.
I don’t care if you step outside for some fresh air, do some meditative breathing, read some affirmations, drink your coffee in silence, etc…take 5 minutes a day and find a way to ensure you’re not pouring from an empty cup.
20) Control The Noise
Sometimes, the noise from our kids having fun, fighting, or dogs barking — it can all be a little overstimulating. So, one way to practice a little practical self care is by protecting your nervous system and controlling the noise.
Loop Engage Earplugs were made just for this! Simply pop in these travel-friendly earplugs and they provide you with 16 dB noise protection. These helpful earplugs can help moms block out the chaos without blocking out the things they need to hear. They’re pretty discreet too, making them perfect for on-the-go busy moms!
21) Wear Clothing that Makes You Feel GOOD
This is one of my favorite self-care tips, because it’s a total confidence booster and can really leave you feeling like you can take on the world.
Need a top that takes the effort out of getting ready because it’s got a built-in bra and hugs you in all the right places? This Luxelift Tank is your dream come true.
Looking for leggings that offer tummy control for your pregnant belly without slipping or suffocating you? You need the BlissFit Maternity Leggings in your life.
Dying to finally find the perfect pair of undies that won’t bunch under your clothes, feel like you’re not even wearing them, AND offer leakproof protection? These are the BEST Leakproof Underwear on the planet.
22) Take On a New Hobby
Finding a hobby that is solely your own, one that fills your cup, and allows you to feel like the best version of yourself is something we all deserve to have. So, what hobby makes you feel like that?
A lot of times moms (especially new parents) get a little lost in parenthood and forget the things they love or enjoy, so here’s a list of some fun hobbies if you need some ideas:
- candle making
- hosting meetups
- pet sitting
- playing an instrument
23) Have a Reliable Outlet
Having a reliable outlet for yourself to offload stress is self-care. It shows you’re ability to acknowledge your needs and get them met in the moments they matter most.
It doesn’t matter if you are spending some alone time by yourself or taking 5 minutes when you wake up to journal — just have a reliable outlet you can use if and when absolutely needed.
24) Don’t Be Afraid of Screen Time
Screen time has a time and place for all families. This is especially true for parents who don’t get as much downtime or lack a support system. Here’s the reality: using screen time can be one of the most effective ways for your to get some quality time alone (even if it’s just 5-10 minutes).
The key to screen time is to watch TV shows that can actually teach your child something. Shows that aren’t just all about action, fast-moving images, or are over-stimulating.
One way to determine which shows are best for your child by age is to use Common Sense Media. Another way is to check out this list of Mom After Baby screen time favorites:
- Daniel Tiger (PBS)
- Super Why (PBS)
- Blippi (Amazon Kids)
- Clifford the Big Red Dog (Amazon Kids)
- The Stinky & Dirty Show (Amazon Kids)
- Molly of Denali (PBS)
- Work it Out Wombats (PBS)
- Bubble Guppies (Nickelodeon — Noggin)
25) Hire Support
Now, we realize that not every mom has a stack of money laying around to hire support. However, if you can fit it into your budget, you may want to consider hiring help.
This could mean hiring a nanny, house cleaner, gardener, dog walker, a therapist to support your emotional needs — anything that allows you to do less of what brings you stress and more of what brings you joy.
Why Do Moms Struggle to Prioritize Self Care?
Now that you have my 25 practical self-care tips for moms, I want to talk briefly about why it’s so hard for so many of us to actually apply them to our lives. Whether you have a busy schedule or don’t have child care — we’ll cover all the common reasons.
You Don’t Have Enough Free Time
Contrary to some beliefs, we don’t all have the same 24 hours in a day. Some moms have a full-time job where they don’t even get home until the bedtime routine begins.
Other moms might work from home and be busy through the end of the day. Some moms are stay-at-home moms which is also its own beast of work. If you feel like you don’t have enough free time to fit in the self-care you need, start small.
Use short practical ways to get just 5 minutes a day. Then, add onto that. Maybe you do 5 minutes a day and take one weekend day to yourself. Get creative girl, your mental health needs it.
You Don’t Have Child Care
If you don’t have childcare and you’re at home with your kids 24/7, it can be really hard to fit in any self-care rituals. Let alone, trust people to watch your kids, but it is worth it to invest a little time and effort into finding a reliable sitter (even if you only use them once a month).
This is especially important for single mothers. You cannot sustain doing it all yourself all of the time. Try looking at places like Care.com or the June Care app for childcare help.
It Doesn’t Fit Into the Budget
Not every mom has the financial means to get her hair done, go to a spa, etc…on a frequent basis. For some moms, they may not even be able to afford childcare just to get out of the house without the kids for once.
If fitting in self-care doesn’t fit into your budget it’s time to dip into the ‘realistic expectations’ bucket and redefine what kind of self-care is practical for you. Maybe you can develop a relaxing skincare routine each night, or journal or do yoga in the morning.
Keep it simple — you can still find ways to feel revitalized in simplicity.
You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
When you’re not getting enough sleep night after night and you already have to take care of children — there is no way you will feel excited about knocking out some self-care ideas. In fact, it might even feel more like a chore.
In this case, self-care might look like finding ways to get more sleep. Can you have someone take the overnight feeds or diaper changes so you can get 10 extra minutes of sleep? Are you able to take a nap mid-day when your baby is sleeping? Can you nap while your kids are in school?
Whether you feel guilty for focusing on yourself and try to always put your family’s needs first or maybe you just feel unmotivated to pour back into your own cup — make sure this is the last time you put yourself last. If you’re reading this, repeat after me: I will NOT put myself last. A happy, functional mother is needed for a happy, functional family.
And if you feel like nobody gets it, we get it, mama. We see you giving this motherhood thing your all day in and day out. Now, which of these self-care tips for moms can you commit to yourself, today?
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