FINDING ME TIME AS A MOM
In all my research and experience with the concept of “ME-TIME” so far, I’ve realised how many shapes and sizes it actually comes in. Essentially, we all have different types of “me-time” on different days and through different seasons of our lives.
At times it’s just something that makes you feel lighter or lifts you up a bit, at other times it’s something that makes you feel grounded and filled with purpose. And yet other times, it’s just downright essential for your sanity, in that moment.
Health experts around the world unanimously agree that self-care for moms shouldn’t be optional; all moms need some me time to feel refreshed.
One of the many recent studies conducted found that working moms with children between the ages of 5-12years put in 98 hours per week. That’s the equivalent of two full-time jobs and working overtime! The results of the survey highlight just “how demanding the role of mom can be and the non-stop barrage of tasks it consists of.”
Health experts around the world unanimously agree that self-care for moms shouldn’t be optional; moms need some alone time to feel refreshed.
Sometimes it can be as simple as:
>> a massage or having your nails/ hair done,
>> music or dance classes,
>> time for a sport you enjoy or
>> a night out with girlfriends,
>> and yet other times, QT with your parent, partner, friend or even your journal is what it takes.
Whereas on a more everyday basis, me time might even be the
>> time to exercise,
>> going to the bathroom without anyone pounding outside,
>>a little peaceful time in nature,
>>or an undisturbed few hours at work – if you really love what you do?
It is essential in ensuring your everyday-sanity as well as your longer-term ability to fill everybody else’s cups – by simply ensuring yours is full enough to pour from.
Here are some tips to make the elusive ME TIME happen for all your hard working moms:
- Make a list of all the things you’ve been meaning to do – for you: Keep adding to this whenever you get a chance or have an idea. There’s little that is more frustrating than finding a nice gap in your otherwise filled up days and spending half that time trying to figure out what it is you want to do.
2. Try to determine the length of your time-windows in your day/ week/ month: not only from what’s available, but what feels necessary. It might be anywhere from 5mins to meditate to 30mins to read a book everyday; an hour a few times a week for a walk in the neighbourhood park; or a couple hours every fortnight for a spa weekend, a mini-shopping spree once a month, or even a solo holiday once a year…
3. Schedule it in: Now that you know what it is you want to do and how long it will take, BLOCK that time on your calendar and own it! Even just the smallest pockets of me-time, can work wonders. It can leave you feeling refreshed, lighter, more grounded and so much better about life.
4. Rope in your village: Communicate to those around you what it means to you, how it makes you feel and when it is you need them to step in and support you…turn around and offer to step in for someone else too? There’s nothing worse for them or for you than being resentful or frustrated by your everyday.
5. Treat your me time as sacred as you would any other appointment: In the same way, you won’t just skip or cancel on a friend because something else comes up, try to stick to your commitment to yourself.
It’s worth keeping in mind that the way to do this right is to look at it long-term. It’s not just something to tide over a bad week, it needs to become a way of life. It is about constantly making time for the woman you want to be within the mother that you are. It is planning and streamlining your life enough to allow you to find windows for yourself. It is about building up a village to step in when you need and, be willing to do the same for them. It is about being conscious and mindful about how you choose to live, everyday.
The key is to remember to do only what works for YOU! Remember “me-time” comes in all shapes and sizes…a massage for one might not do what an hour in nature could for another, a mother or friend might be more willing to step in than a stressed out partner, 15minutes everyday might be more valuable than two hours at a stretch on a weekend…it’s your time and you should consciously choose to spend it however you consider most precious.
It is about constantly making time for the woman you want to be, within the mother you are.