Who wouldn’t love to blow off all responsibilities and spend the day at the spa, or heading to workout then brunch with a friend. What about taking time to tend to your mental health with a self led meditation or guided counselling session for the heart and soul? The thing I have encountered as a woman and even more so, as a mom, is the guilt associated with self-care. Will my child miss me while I am gone? Will I miss a milestone moment while I go I the gym? Will my husband resent me leaving right after he’s home from work? Will other women judge me for making time for myself?
The answer to all of these questions can be yes. That’s the kicker.
How do we carve out time for tending to ourselves and still being an individual outside of all of the social titles we are given? Mother. Lover. Wife. Friend. Daughter. And the list goes on. We have a lot of folks who look to us for a variety of needs to be met, but how often do we look inward and say, “girl, what do you need?”.
Self care itself can be defined in so many ways, but for the sake of this post I’m going to let you use your imagination and think about what you might do, solely for the benefit of no one but yourself for one hour if guilt were not an issue. Is it hitting the pavement with a friend to run off some stress? Is it to lock yourself in your bedroom with a snack and Netflix ? Is it a salon treatment? Is it a trip to the library? Is it a walk on the beach ?
I’m giving out these suggestions as a way to start your mind thinking about what you might do, but the options are so personal and endless that you really need to develop a self care wish list for yourself!
Then when you have a few options, grab the day planner and go on a treasure hunt for time. Days are short and there is a lot in your plate but you can make it work, I know you can! Find one hour, block it out. That’s YOUR time! Then share your plan with those you need to be involved to make it work… that may be your spouse, a friend, whom ever and whatever you need to do. And when that twinge in your belly starts to pile up the excuses as to why you can’t fit it in, think about what you would say to your spouse or best friend when they say they need a break? Would you say, “yup you’re right, don’t make time for you you don’t deserve it!”? Of course not? You’d be supportive, hell I bet you would even bend over backwards to help make it happen!
This one hour of time will do wonders for your mind, body and soul. Additionally, it will remind you how important YOU ARE, and how much you can and should continue to carve out time for YOU.
This week, of an hour doesn’t feel doable, take a few minutes just for you and see how it makes you feel and start to build a self care plan from there. I promise it will be worth it.
And as for the guilt? Well, that will take time. I share my self care plan with my spouse so he knows what’s up and he sees an obvious difference in me when I do take this time for myself so now he encourages it. My kids, they get a chance to miss me and I them. And that friends, is a gift. I also work to surround myself with likeminded people who share a passion for self improvement and have an “it takes a village” mentality so we can lean on each other when we need help executing our self care plans or we self care “date” and enjoy time together!
It does take time and effort but it is beyond worth it. In my world, self care is not about indulgence but necessity. I am a better mom, partner, friend and loved one when I remember who I am. Just me. Michelle.
Pack up that guilt, put it far away where it can’t taunt you and get to taking care of yourself! You will love how it feels to be important in your own life!