How many times have you thought to yourself, “I just don’t have time”?
Don’t have time to exercise. Don’t have time to see a physio. Don’t have time to take up a hobby that doesn’t involve the kids.
There are only so many hours in the day, after all. By the time we make breakfasts, pack lunches, clean the kitchen, make the beds, fix the bump in the socks, chauffer the kids out of the house, go to work, attempt to hit 10,000 steps, rush to school pick up, put on a load of washing, make snacks, clean the kitchen again, help with homework, ship the kids to sport, chuck the laundry in the dryer, sort out dinner, clean the kitchen yet again, fold the washing while squatting to get your daily exercise in, eat dinner, more kitchen cleaning, bathe the kids, discover your child wants to dress as a bee for tomorrow’s Book Week parade, yell at the kids to read, throw dessert at them, put away the washing, shower and make a bee costume, well, there’s really not time for much else.
I’m not saying that we should just throw in the towel, quit being mums, move to an island – where we can sleep a solid eight hours every night and drink cocktails all day. I mean, we could do that, but we’d probably miss our kids. So, let’s try and find a balance, shall we? A way to take care of ourselves and our families – without sacrificing our own emotional and physical wellbeing.
Impossible, you say? Perhaps for the average bear. But we’re Mumma bears and we can do anything.
First Things First, We Need to Kick the Guilt-Fairy to the Kerb.
One of the hardest things about doing something just for us – is that we tend to feel guilty about it. Like we’re being ‘naughty’ for abandoning the washing and choosing to binge-watch Bridgerton instead. Well, not binge-watching, because, let’s face it, we have maybe an hour (tops) before we have to switch it back to Cocomelon.
Your kids deserve a happy and healthy you, and in order to become this – you need time to yourself. So, shoo that guilt-fairy away. You don’t have time for guilt-fairies. You’re too busy taking care of yourself.
Next, make it a mission to do these four activities, just for you.
1. Something to Help You Relax and Unwind
Such as reading a book, yoga, art journaling, etc. You can involve the family too with things like massage trains or family meditation.
2. Something You Love
Or used to love, because, let’s be honest, we all tend to forget what hobbies we enjoyed pre-kids. Think about something you’d like to get back into or try – netball, cooking classes, a painting party perhaps?
3. Something to Get Those Endorphins Going
A little bit of exercise can go a long way. Involve the kids or plan me-time to go for a walk, a run, a hike, a swim, etc.
4. Something for Your Physical Wellbeing
Get your hair done, treat yourself to a manicure, get your teeth cleaned and see your doctor about any outstanding issues you’ve been putting off.
Remember, you are a role model for your children. You want them to set healthy habits and take care of themselves, and the best way to teach them how to do this is by modelling it yourself.
We’re all guilty of putting ourselves last – It’s what parents do. But let’s all agree to move ourselves up the line, to put ourselves first every now and then – or to at least put ourselves in front of the laundry.