First of all, taking time to take care of yourself isn’t selfish! Studies prove this and so does logic as you have to be in a great shape (physically and emotionally) to provide the best care for your children. If the ugly mom-guilt still rears its head in your mind, think about this study from the Institute of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy. It clearly proves that anxiety and stress in the mother have a negative effect on the newborn and can result in mental and physiological disorders. So, finding that ‘you time’ is essential for both your health and the baby’s. Of course, doing this will be difficult because small kids will keep you extremely busy. However, these four effective strategies will help you get the much-needed break.
A Busy Mom’s Guide: 4 Ways to Find Time for Yourself
1. Make those baby naps count
Babies sleep a lot, which is a great thing for moms but only when you use that time right. The ‘right’ in this case means dedicating at least one of these nap-breaks not to washing, cooking, cleaning, or studying parenting, but to yourself. Set up a routine where twice a week during day naps you’ll take a bath and simply relax. That’ll be a great time to practice some mindfulness meditation that will bring you back in the present moment. This type of meditation helps reduce stress and anxiety very effectively, so say researchers from Harvard and many other scientists from all over the world.
You can dedicate other days to your hobbies, chats with friends, or other activities important for you as a person. The important thing is to focus on your own wellbeing. Remember, you have the right to do this.
2. Allow yourself to be beautiful
Being a busy mom means you’ll have to cut down your beauty time, there’s no way around it. The time in salons will take the biggest cut. But you can still make yourself beautiful by changing your hair and skincare routine.
First of all, use the products that can help you most effectively. For example, if you have colored hair, use specialized shampoos and conditioners to make the color last. Platinum blondes will need a purple-tinted product like Fanola No Yellow for blonde hair.
Be sure to use a deep-conditioning product regularly as pregnancy and nursing wreak havoc on your hormones. This often results in dry skin and hair. For the skin use moisturizing lotions (for the body) and creams with hyaluronic acid (for the face). Note that you might need to change your regular skincare products due to the changes in your body.
Using products that work regularly will allow you to reduce the frequency of salon visits. But most importantly, this will help enhance your natural beauty, which will go a long way in reducing your stress levels.
3. Exercise with your baby
Not having time to workout is a major concern for busy moms, and it’s true that fitting a gym visit is nearly impossible. However, you can exercise at home. This will help you shed that baby weight and can actually benefit your baby.
There are many exercise routines you can do together even with a newborn. This will be great fun for both of you and will teach your child the importance of exercise. When they grow older, these routines will be a great opportunity for bonding.
4. Create a map of child-friendly places in your neighborhood and USE IT
Socializing is essential for mental health, so you must never deprive yourself of it. It’s true that you can’t always leave your baby with someone else while going out to hang out with friends. However, in these cases you only need to go together.
Today many businesses offer child-friendly zones and even supervised playrooms. Do your research and set up meetings in the locations where both you and your baby can have fun with friends.