As moms/wives/women/homeschoolers it is imperative that we take care of ourselves. I know that it’s popular thought to say mom puts herself last or me time is another term for selfishness. I am here to tell you that is not true ladies!! You can’t give if you yourself are empty! If you are worn down and stressed out, it is near impossible to take care of the family, the house, the schooling. . . we all know that list goes on and on (and on).
I learned that lesson the hard way. I was constantly running on empty. I was stressed, cranky, and at times downright unpleasant. I developed a “poor me” attitude, and thought it was just so unfair (said in whiny voice) that everyone else gets taken care of except me. Then it dawned on me one day that I have to take care of me too!
Duh, Jeniffer. Seriously, why did it take you 30 years to figure that out??
I knew I didn’t have a whole lot of extra time in the day to spend on me, but also knew that I had to figure something out- and fast. I made a list of things that I really enjoyed (and sometimes needed) but didn’t always get to do. I made my list and settled down with five things that I was determined to fit into my day- every day. I’ve been taking care of me on a daily basis for a few weeks now, and MAN what a difference! Difference in my attitude, my outlook on the day, my parenting, everything!
So, here are my 5 things I do for myself every day
I get into God’s Word
Ideal mornings I get up before the children, get my tea made, grab my Bible and notebook, and dig into God’s word. Unfortunately not every morning is ideal. Sometimes the kids wake up unexpectedly early. Some days I wake up with a terrible headache and can’t bear the thought of reading. Or maybe it’s one of those awful mornings that I can’t find my Bible (yes, that happens). It’s those mornings that I opt for a podcast instead. If the kids aren’t awake yet then I can set up my Chromebook and instantly tune in to Alistair Begg or Joyce Meyer. I love that the podcasts are usually around 15 minutes long so I can sneak in transferring the laundry between casts.
Podcasts are also an easy way to sneak God’s word in during the day (when you think you’re too busy). In the van, while cleaning the house, taking a shower, making meals, doing laundry, or even just lying down to rest. You’d be amazed at how many opportunities we have to listen to a sermon or two during the day.
Let me clarify, I read for me. There are always school books to be read, teachers guides to refer to and refresh with, and so on. I take a few minutes each day- usually at night– to read for me. Right now I’m reading Grace Based Parenting and Money Making Mom. I’m trying to limit myself to two or three books at a time. I used to get 10-12 going at a time and hardly finish any of them! Pace yourself girl, pace yourself!!
I use Essential Oils
Over the past year or so, I’ve gotten pretty big on essential oils. My favorite company is Plant Therapy– they’re as pure as the big brands and cost WAY less. I bought some roller ball bottles and carrier oil so I can make my own mixes and just throw them in my purse on the go. Sometimes I put on some Energy to help wake me up in the morning, other times I grab the Clary Sage just because I love the way it smells.
I have learned how to cure headaches, aches and pains, cramps, cold sores, plus make my own cleaners, bug spray and deodorant. As I continue down the crunchy mama road, I know essential oils will be a big part of it. Making all these homemade things aren’t just a need for my family, I also enjoy it! So I guess these would also fall into the “for me” list.
I enjoy a good cup of Tea (or two)
I’m pregnant, and pregnant me doesn’t do well with coffee- it’s an acid thing. After much searching, I have begun a love affair with loose tea. My personal favorite comes from a small business called Blooming with Joy. My friend Michelle sells delicious tea and every accessory you could possibly need to enjoy your tea. My favorites include Encourage Mint, Sleepy Dreams, Blood Orange, and SaniTea (my #1 fav). If you grab the sample pack (what I did), you can try four different types of tea and get free shipping (woo-hoo!).
I often end up having a cup of Encouragement around 11, then SaniTea around 2pm, and then Sleepy Dreams at bedtime. I may be a junkie. 🙂
By the way, you may have thought, “Wait! the oils and tea cost extra money and I don’t have that!” Well, the extra money I used to pay for those niceties I got from ideas found in Money Making Mom. It really is a great book. Without the ideas I was able to use from there, I wouldn’t have any “fun money”. We are a family of eight with a single income on a tight budget. Any extra stuff has to come from creativity- and Money Making Mom is full of it!!
I Get Outside
I cannot tell you how much good the sun does for me. You know how Superman needs the sun to replenish his power? I’m like that too. It makes me happy and warm. And whenever I have a cold or just don’t feel well, getting out in the sun always helps. Of course not everyday in the Midwest is sunny. On those days I sit on my covered porch and listen to the birds or the rain. If it’s cold, I grab a blanket and a cup of tea before heading out. Whatever the case, I get outside every day at least for a little while.
So there it is, simple ways I take care of myself and spend time recharging my own batteries throughout the day. They don’t take much time at all. Actually, often times I combine them by sitting on the porch, wearing a favorite oil, reading a book, and drinking a cup of tea! In just a few minutes a day, I take care of me so I can better take care of my family.