Last week I was watching a lecture for my nutrition course that caused me think about how I treat myself. The speaker was talking to a young lady who indicated that on a daily basis she gives a lot of herself, often at a cost of her own happiness. Then he asked her one simple question, “What do you do for yourself on a daily basis?” She was at a loss for words and struggled to answer, as I would be. To that he said (I’m paraphrasing) that it’s just as important for you to take care of yourself as it is to take care of others. If you aren’t healthy and happy you won’t be around to be of service to others.
Since that day I have been challenging myself by asking “What have I done for myself today?”
I will definitely say that some days are easier than others to do something for myself. But I have committed to doing one small thing to keep my spirits up and to nurture myself every day at little to no cost.
As Moms we have 101 things on our to do list at any given moment and can come up with 10,001 excuses on why we can’t take time out to do something for ourselves. As a result we are exhausted, we feel under appreciated, and sometimes even depressed. That is why we have to do it. WE are important too! And we need to learn that we deserve to care for ourselves as well as we would anyone else.
Things You Can Do For Yourself Today
So I looked at my life and came up with some things I wanted to do for myself and added some things for you all to consider as well.
- Take a relaxing bath. Pour some Epsom salts, baking soda, and your favorite essential oils into the tub, light some candles, turn off the light and soak away your stresses. When you get out use your favorite lotion or cream and really indulge in yourself.
- Paint your nails or give yourself a mani/pedi. If you don’t want to do it yourself, by all means go to the nail shop. But make sure you do it. You’d be surprised how a little pop of color on your nails can brighten up your day and make you feel a little more feminine.
- Give yourself a facial. Pinterest has a ton of DIY facial masks that you can make with things you already have in your kitchen. Whip up a batch, wash your face, steam over a bowl of hot water for 5-10 minutes, then put the mask on and relax for 10-20 minutes. Your skin will thank you.
- Exercise!!! Exercise is a great stress reliever, gives you a chance to stop thinking about all you still have to do and allows you to focus on improving yourself. 30 minutes a day is all it takes. You can involve the kids if you have to but doing it without them allows you to really get into it. Do whatever you enjoy. Yoga, step aerobics, your favorite work out DVD, running, or lifting weights. Just get moving!
- Go for a walk. The weather is warming up here on the East Coast and we should definitely take some time to enjoy it. A nice leisurely stroll around the block is great for your spirit, allows you to soak in some vitamin D, and allows you to get gardening ideas from your neighbors. Take the kids and the dog along for the ride and make it fun.
- Take yourself to the movies. Ask Dad or a friend to watch the kids for a few hours and catch a matinee. Invite your girlfriends and make an afternoon out of it if you have the time. Watch that romantic comedy you’ve been dying to see and laugh your ass off! If you feel awkward going by yourself, go as early as possible. Theaters aren’t as crowded and often you’ll have the place to yourself.
- Start a hobby. Have you been thinking about taking up gardening? Sewing? Painting? Give yourself 30 minutes a day to nurture a new hobby. A creative outlet is rewarding and allows you to zone out for a few minutes.
- Read and/or write for pleasure. Pick up that book or magazine you have sitting next to your bed collecting dust and commit to reading for 30 minutes a day. Start a journal or write that novel you always wanted to publish. Have fun with it.
- Dance. Seriously, turn on the music and act a straight fool. Invite the kids to join you or do it in the privacy of your own room. I promise you won’t be able to stifle a laugh when you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror.
- Indulge in your favorite treat… all to yourself! Sometimes as a mom we don’t want to share our favorite treat. So just once or twice, sneak away and enjoy your favorite snack all to yourself. I know this is like a mission impossible feat when you have children. But even if you have to hide in a closet to enjoy it… you MUST do it! Such a small thing but you get so much joy out of it.
- Buy yourself flowers. It doesn’t have to be an expensive bunch. On your next trip to the grocery store pick up a bunch that fits in your budget. Sometimes they have sales and some bunches can be as cheap as $5. Take them home and arrange them in a vase and place them where you will see them the most. You’ll be surprised how this can make you feel.
- Meet your best friend for coffee or tea. Try to arrange a quick “date” with your girlfriend(s) where you guys can sit and chat or gossip. Yeah, you can do this over the phone but there is something about the face to face interaction that is so much more rewarding.
- Get your eyebrows done. Nothing brightens your face up like a nicely shaped pair of eyebrows. If yours are threatening to merge together or with your hair line spend the money to get them done as a treat to yourself. You will walk out of there feeling and looking like a totally different person.
- Meditate. Not much fun but extremely rewarding. Allow yourself to get still in your thoughts and listen to what the universe has to tell you. Start off with 5-10 minutes and build up to 20 minutes twice a day if possible. If you have a hard time turning that mental to do list off a trick I use is to feel gratitude for everything I have. You can say repeatedly in your head “Thank You” as your mantra until you can get still in your thoughts.
These are just a few things I thought about. Personally, I am looking forward to tomorrow when I’m going to take myself to the movies to watch “The Perfect Match“. I swear I haven’t seen a romantic comedy in the theater in years! I’m so used to watching Disney Pixar or Super Hero movies I hope I know how to behave! LOL
So what are some things you guys can think of to do for yourself? I’m looking for more ideas and would love to hear your suggestions. Why not try doing this for a week or so and let me know how it makes you feel. Comment below!