"Self love" can be a bit of a buzz word but the meaning behind it is more important than it ever was! We live in a culture where we allow our worth to be determined but likes, followers, awards, number of friends, so it's no wonder that we struggle so badly with feeling inadequate. But it starts with US. It starts with our own self care. We need to LOVE ourselves first, SO THAT we can love and serve others the way that we want.
"BUT I FEEL GUILTY!" Yes, I totally get it. I have a whole other post on "Why Mom Guilt Needs to Go", but here are 6 things I make part of my life intentionally to help me be a better mom and person no matter how busy I am.
Before you write this off, just think about writing. I'm not talking about "dear diary" but we seldom take time to be alone with our thoughts and process through them. We bury them and let them build up which increases our stress levels. Let it go by letting it out. I have a note book that serves sometimes as a reminder list but often as quick notes from a podcast or book I'm reading, or things I'm thinking about. Sometimes it gets deeper and more intentional but its something I can go back to and continue moving ideas and thoughts through. Grab a cute notebook and start yours own side bar therapy.
We all know some level of fitness has an impact on our health but it's mentally important too. As depression and anxiety in people today increases, 30 minutes of walking 5x a week has a similar effect to an anti-depressant! We need to make this a priority for both the physical implications like heart health and many others but also for our mental health! You choose what YOU enjoy. It doesn't have to be the gym. It can be the trampoline with your kids (this is 1 of the 3 ways I work out at home with them) or going for a hike. Doing something physical satisfies your bodies need for endorphins and impacts your output on a higher level.
A Calming Practice
Raising kids, especially ones just like you can keep you on your toes and close to breaking points. While we'd all love to get a way from it all sometimes, we often don't have that luxury. We need a "de-escalator" practice, just like we try and teach our kids. As a person with anxiety, I have to practice this often and it involves a countdown, intentional 4x4 breathing (in 4 out 4) and a sequence of statements. Sometimes you really "just need a minute" to reset your mind and reduce the boiling point. There is only 1 degree between hot and boiling so find what works best for you to turn the burner down.
I AM statements
At first I thought these were silly. I felt delusional almost. After reading "Super Attractor" by Gabby Bernstein I realized there was a power in the unvierse that started with the energy I'm giving out. Visualizing myself as if it's already happened was a practice I started with Rachel Hollis after "Girl, Stop Apologizing". (Booth excellent books you should read). The simple reminder and chant in my head daily of these statements sets an intention and power for my day and reminds me of what I'm capable of.
I am a notorious "i'll do it myself" kind of person. As a mom, I've been forced to reliquish some of that control and found that it forged new friendships along the way. When I'm swallowed into my day to day, I become a robot. WHen I make time for connections AND am intentional about making them I find a great sense of peace and support to move me forward as a person. WE ARE MEANT FOR COMMUNITY. Wherever those connections come from, relationships are important to our health. Make a calendar appointment for a monthly date night, a family activity or a coffee catch up and be consistent.
Make time for yourself
I know, this is the eye roll statement where you think, "I seriously don't have time". But you do. You need to PRIORITIZE it over things that don't serve you, like the 30 minutes you spent scrolling Facebook. Set a timer or block the schedule and do something that SERVES YOU. Read a book, do an activity, whatever brings you joy even just for a few minutes! When you learn to serve yourself, you serve others so much better.