In the hustle and bustle of every day life, it’s easy to lose track of time and forget to to set aside time just for you. As mothers, we often feel it is our responsibility to juggle everyone’s schedule’s, keep everyone happy and healthy and generally keep life running smoothly for our partner and little ones. And as school is about to come to a start (or has already started for some) things are more hectic than ever right now. But whether you have a child in fourth grade, or you’re a new mom to an infant, it’s very important to do little things here and there to keep your own happiest and health a top priority.
What’s the big deal?
You might be thinking to yourself, “time just for me? yeah right – like anyone has time for that.” But here’s the thing, making sure you put yourself first every once in a while will not only ensure your own sanity, but keep you and your family healthier. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, both parents work in 60.2% of families. That’s means a lot of you are working mothers. Furthermore, a recent survey of nearly 600 working parents found that:
- 81% of parents worry they will burn out
- 88% said they suffer from at least one stress-related health problem since becoming a working parent
- 59% have problems with anxiety
- 43% struggle with depression
Talk about a health crisis in the making. What’s more? Stay-at-home moms might struggle more than working moms, according to a new Gallup analysis of more than 60,000 U.S. women between the ages of 18 and 64 (before retirement age) interviewed in 2012. The study found that 28 percent of stay-at-home moms reported depression a lot of the day when asked how they were feeling the day before, but only 17 percent of employed moms did.
It’s no secret that depression and anxiety will not only take a toll on you, but the well-being of your entire family. So what’s a mama to do? For starters, don’t keep your feelings a secret. Tell your partner, mom, best friend how you’re feeling. It can be therapeutic to simply vent a little, plus, they’re likely to remind you that even super mom needs to have some “me time”.
Fun and relaxing activities just for you (and friends – if you choose!)
When you’re reminded to take that “me time”, think about what truly makes you relaxed and happy. Perhaps you love a classic spa day – getting a pedicure or a massage is very relaxing for many women. If you’re looking for a fairly inexpensive way to feel like a million bucks, consider getting a blowout at your local hair salon. Call around and get prices from various places as you’ll find they can be priced anywhere from $20-$100+. But no matter your price point, having a professional blow dry and style your hair is a great way to add a little bounce in your locks and pep in your step.
On the other hand, maybe you’re the kind of mom who feels rejuvenated after spending some time with friends. Get the girls together and visit a local vineyard, go see a movie, try the new sushi restaurant or go to a cooking class. Sometimes it’s hard to jump back into the social scene when you’re so used to being mom 24/7, but putting yourself out there can be surprising refreshing. Plus, there’s nothing like spending time with friends to have a few really good laughs and make some wonderful memories.
You time (with baby)
Of course, for many mothers, having time alone or with friends is not realistic every day, or even every week. That’s why it’s a good idea to find things activities that make your happiness a top priority, but also includes having your little one nearby. Experts recommend enforcing quite time in your home every day. Children may struggle with it at first, but once they’ve grown accustomed to it, this time will be a perfect opportunity for you to read a good book, or enjoy another hobby of your own. Getting out of the house is also a good way to keep your spirits up. Plan a play date at the park or go for a hike with your baby. Whatever you decided to do with day, keep a list or a journal to keep track of all that you’ve done. A sense of accomplish is key to feeling energized, fulfilled and happy!
Have an idea we missed? Please, share it below! We’d love to hear from you! Happy Labor Day Weekend and lots of love from the New Little Wonders family!