For busy mothers, time is valuable. But if you’re a new mom with a baby and toddler in tow, it seems there’s not enough of it to go around. You don’t even have time to keep yourself rested and healthy. Your children, family, home, and work always seem to come first.
However, if you don’t practice self-care, you can damage your health, although unintentionally. You might notice yourself feeling more burned out, exhausted, stressed, and even sick. You might have even shouted at your toddler or your spouse at one point.
Many young mothers feel the same way as you, exhausted and overworked. In fact, according to a study published by the Sociologists for Women in Society, there has been a 55% increase in mothers’ housework time since the pandemic started. There was also a 35% rise in time spent on childcare.
The increase in time spent on childcare and housework is not the only reason why moms today feel burned out. Changes in the way people communicate and socialize affect mothers’ mental health, too. There is isolation because of the pandemic. Staying at home tired and away from friends and other family members makes young mothers lonely.
It’s important for mothers to care for themselves. It’s for your own good. More importantly, it’s for the kids. When you prioritize self-care, you have more energy and patience to take care of your children. To get you started with your self-care routine, here are some ideas.
Practice Good Sleeping Habits
Moms often cram housework while the kids are sleeping. Avoid putting off housework during the day and cramming them all up when the children go to bed. Teaching children household chores is a good discipline. It prepares them for life. And it gives you more time to sleep.
With lack of sleep, you may notice that your appetite has increased. That can lead to weight gain associated with depression, Type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases. If you have trouble sleeping even when the kids have been put to bed, Parents suggests avoiding drinking coffee or alcohol in the evening.
Enjoy Some Me-Time
Technology improves human lives. You don’t need a number, though, to tell you that most people today are addicted to technology.
Putting down your smartphone can do you good. Disconnect and unplug even just for an hour or two. Being constantly on your phone can foster envy or dissatisfaction and may even lead to depression. Leave it for a while and enjoy some me-time. With your phone down, you can do several things while having some time to yourself.
Moms today love to pamper themselves. Who wouldn’t? After spending hours working and taking care of a child, having a break is essential. You can get a massage because it reduces stress and anxiety. You can get better sleep without these two.
You can also pamper yourself with a spa treatment. Aside from massage, spas often offer face, skin, body, nail, hair, and even medical treatments. You can get your skin rejuvenated and have your nails done. Everything that your body needs to relax can be found in a spa.
Yoga is another way to let your body relax. Ask friends for referrals. They might know a good yoga instructor to get you started. Don’t be tempted by DIY yoga apps. You’ll be distracted by ads and other notifications on your phone.
Or you can spend time doing something you love. Perhaps reading a book can give you a better relaxation. You can also start a hobby. Maybe you used to create music in college. Why don’t you do it again now?
Taking some time to be alone can boost your belief in yourself once again. Once you enjoy the rewards of me-time, you’ll be asking for more. Take advantage of this desire by keeping the habit.
Move and Exercise
If you’re not the yoga-type, you can set aside time to go to the gym. Choose exercises that motivate you to be consistent with your routine. If you don’t have the budget to get a gym membership, you can exercise in the comfort of your own home.
You can walk, jog, or go on a hike, too. Outdoor physical activities can be good for you. Getting some sun and breathing in the fresh air can help boost vitamin D and lift your mood.
Remember, regular exercise is important for your well-being and overall health. It can help you maintain a healthy weight, reducing your risk of chronic diseases.
Get Proper Healthcare
Nobody knows your body better than you. If it’s screaming for some care, provide it with what it needs. Have all the support it needs. Your first action should be to communicate your concern to your family. Tell them how you feel.
After you communicate with your family, it’s best to get proper healthcare. You should get a regular check-up with your physician. Also, it would help if you prioritized your mental health.
Putting your needs above your family’s can be elusive under optimal conditions, not to mention during a pandemic. No matter how difficult it is, you need to take care of yourself as a parent to keep the whole family healthy and happy. There are many effective ways to manage your emotions during these challenging times, and you will eventually find out what’s best for you.