Contrary to the “people-pleasing” environment we were accustomed to growing up in, I’ve recently accepted and established (with myself) the fact that self-care is the most unselfish thing you can do. As a parent, I’ve realized that the times I am most triggered or lose my cool, are the times when my needs are not met. So I’ve lately become a self-care advocate. A personal breakthrough was realizing self-care does not have to be elaborately planned. It doesn’t have to entail days at the spa or babysitter bookings for dinners out. First and foremost, it means making sure that your basic needs are met. Then, it’s all about the little things.
Self-care doesn’t have to be elaborately planned. It’s all about the little things.
I recently published an article on Motherzing, a mama magazine based in London. Below is a snapshot of the article, and the original article is below for you to read and enjoy!
You can also buy your copy and encourage small businesses (mama-run, even better!) by clicking on this link.
Oh, and yes, the illustration is also done by yours truly!
Easy ways to practice self-care as a (single) mum
When you become a mum, you come face to face with the truth that you are responsible for another human being who fully depends on you for survival. As a single mum, I am often told to take care of myself to avoid reaching burnout. Hearing that used to make me frustrated because saying it is easier said than done. With time, however, I came to the conclusion that self-care doesn’t have to be elaborately planned. It doesn’t have to involve a budget for sitters and days at the spa. There are little ways you can take care of yourself every day that can have a positive impact on your mental health and make you a happier and more peaceful mum. Here are some ideas:
- Make sure you get your daily moment of fresh air. Take a walk or sit outside, and BREATHE.
- Who are we kidding? Gym class is literally impossible to attend regularly. But squeezing in a 15-minute workout at home is possible and time-efficient.
- Journaling. Pouring all of your thoughts on paper is a real brain cleanse.
- Schedule a few hours to yourself every week. Find a trusted person to babysit and do something you love. It can be coffee with a friend, a stroll with your camera, browsing shops, or riding your bike. The possibilities are endless. Also, if you feel like staying in bed, please do.
- Instead of endlessly scrolling your phone when your kids are asleep, try meditation, stretching, reading a good book, or listening to a podcast.
- Make your home cozy and fill it with little things that make you feel good: fluffy pillows, giant mugs, warming candles, stylish plants, you name it. I also like to buy fresh flowers weekly. A nice bouquet can instantly uplift your mood.
- Take on a hobby you can practice at home: tarot, painting, sketching, cooking, whatever warms your heart.
- And last but not least, talk to a professional. It can be a life coach, a therapist, a healer, or even a psychic! Choose someone you can have regular sessions with and make it a point to show up.
Most importantly, no guilt is necessary. As they say, you cannot pour from an empty cup.
Any other simple self-care ideas you mamas have?