I know what you must be thinking.
Another post about self-care?
That’s right! Another post about self-care. Because it is that important! Especially for moms, practicing self-care is not only important, it is vital. It makes you a better parent in so many ways. But with life being so stressful, and we’re forever in a rush, we seldom make time for ourselves.
So this post is going to focus on the why of self-care! Why it is so important, and how does it actually make us better at our job as parents.
Setting an Example for Your Kids
Our kids look to us as the benchmark of what the world is like. They use us as a guide for what they should be doing themselves.
As such, it is up to us to show our kids as best as we can how we would like for them to be. If our kids see us constantly stressed out, this will rub off onto them.
If we don’t make the time to take care of ourselves, how can we expect them to do the same? And in reality, it does not take that much effort to do small things here and there to take care of ourselves.
Need help? Read Self Care Practices All Moms Can Do Today
Being Able To Take Care of Your Kids
If you’ve ever flown in a plane, before you even take off, they cation that if the breathing apparatus comes down, you have to put yours on first, then assist those around you.
This is a comparison I make with my clients all the time when discussing self-care. Your instinct would be help and protect your kids first. In reality the opposite is more beneficial to both of you. When it comes to self-care, if we can’t look after ourselves, how can we expect to be able to look after our children?
Self Care Allows Us to be More Effective Overall
Do you know that feeling when you see your phone battery get to the 10 percent mark and you know you won’t have access to a charger for a few hours?
We have all been there, and it is not fun. This is why most of us take the time to plug in our phone whenever we can. Now, imagine if you took the same thoughts about making sure you phone battery was charged and applied it to yourself.
That is self-care. Giving yourself a charge to recharge. This doesn’t have to be a big thing like a full day at the spa (although that might be nice one day). Taking time with friends on a Saturday afternoon, taking a long bath or just sitting quietly reading a book are all things that can help rejuvenate us.
Hopefully, you are getting the picture of why self-care is so important. Putting a few simple exercises into practice will not just be beneficial for you but your family as well. And trust me, I know as well as anyone that we, as mothers, do not have endless time to spend just on us. Making the most of time you do have is super-important.
For example, exercise can mean 5-10 minutes of work during a time the kids are occupied. Calming your mind may simply require a few quick breathing exercises. A few sips of a warm cup of coffee can go a long way.
Just a few minutes here and there spent on you will you allow you to see great benefits and be a better parent overall.
Jmore parenting columnist Talya Knable is a psychotherapist who lives in Lutherville with her husband, Stephen, and their two children, Jack and Leigh. Her website is tkpsych.com/. She is also the assistant clinical director of Shalom Tikvah (shalomtikvah.org/), a local non-profit organization that supports Jewish families facing mental illness and other challenging life circumstances.