Life as a mumma is certainly full, and there are plenty of needs that have to be met. It can be really easy to feel like you have to be everything for everyone else, so much so that you end up not having any time to take care of yourself. I'm here to tell you that your own self care has to come before that of anyone else, and here is why:
If we are living from an empty cup because we've given our all to everyone else, then we are not being our best selves. We simply can't be. In order to give our best, and be more of who we want to be, we MUST practice self care every day. It truly is a requirement, not a luxury or a reward. The key to doing this as a mum of tiny people is to practice small acts of care and kindness to yourself, rather than expecting to fit in a 30 minute meditation by yourself.
I'm going to share with you some ways in which I practice self care as a mum of 2 little girls who are 1 and 3 years old. It's not always easy, but I know that it is essential in order for me NOT to become overwhelmed, grumpy and exhausted. These practices will really help you too!
Supplement: I'm a breastfeeding mum, and breastfeeding takes more out of you than pregnancy. It's the time in your life when it's essential to take good quality supplements in order to meet both you and your babies needs. Part of my self care at the moment is to make sure that I take my supplements every single day. It helps so much with my energy and moods.
Get in touch with me If you would like a recommendation for some good quality and safe supplements.
Get outside: Now this one is just as good for my kids as it is for me! They adore being outside, and as soon as the air hits my skin and my feet hit the earth I feel it too. A sense of being grounded, calmed, held. Just getting out in the backyard is enough, but a walk to your local park or lake is fabulous too.
We all need to get outside more for our health; science is now showing us that it helps with everything from helping your moods, to getting a better nights sleep.
Breathe: Deep belly breathing allows you to instantly put your nervous system into rest and repair mode, and ground yourself back into your body. As mum's its so easy to be all up in our heads, thinking, worrying, ticking off our to do lists. Coming back down to ourselves is just a beautiful way to reconnect to who we are as women. I practice 10 deep belly breathes whenever I think of it throughout my day. It's also a lovely thing to do when you get into bed at night, as it helps to prepare you for a good nights sleep.
Diffuse essential oils: This has been a game changer for me. You can instantly change the mood in your home and the feeling in your body with essential oils. There is some wonderful science behind this phenomena, but i won't share that here suffice to say that our sense of scent is a very powerful one. I use, recommend and sell the doTerra brand of essential oils, and this is because they had such a profound effect on my mental health and moods that I simply had to share them with anyone who is interested. They are gold. As a bonus, I have a couple of blends that I use when the kids are tantrumming or not cooperating, and they create wondrous changes in their moods too!
If you want to know more please get in touch.
Eat Nourishing food: Hah that sounds obvious I know, but I can't tell you how many mum's i've seen in my clinic who say that they don't have time to feed themselves. Here are my go to ways to ensure that you get fed alongside your kids, and mumma's this is so so important. Essentially its just being pre prepared, here's what I mean:
Breakfast: Make a smoothie the night before and have it ready to go in the fridge. Or soak some oats overnight and enjoy a bowl of homemade porridge alongside your kids in the morning. Other good options are to make a chia pudding or a bircher muesli at night, and everyone can enjoy it in the morning without any cooking on your part.
Lunch: Save left overs from dinner the night before for your lunch. You can quickly reheat these whilst you get the kids lunch ready. If all else fails, a quick and somewhat nourishing option is to make some toast and top it with thick avocado and tomato slices and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. You could add cottage cheese for some extra protein too, or some salmon or tuna.
Snacks: Cut up some fruit and vegetables on the weekend, so that during the week you can just grab and go. You can do the same with muffins or a muesli slice, make a batch on the weekend and have portions ready to go for yourself and the kids during the week. I've been guilty of grabbing a whole carrot and snacking on that alongside some hommus or cheese, whatever works for you is key here!
Practice a nourishing night time routine: This is a part of your day that is just for you, when everyone else is sleeping (hopefully!!). I know this doesn't always happen, but when it does take advantage of that time!
I use my beautiful essential oils as part of my night time skincare and self love routine. Having gorgeous products that are chemical free, good for you, smell divine and invite feelings of relaxation and self worth is a really delicious way to indulge in me time.
Rose, Geranium and Yarrow Pom are all part of my nightly regime, which is really interesting because Rose is the oil of love, Geranium is a supercharged relaxation hero, and yarrow pom is possibly the best night time serum you could ever buy.
Other things I like to do as part of my nightly self care routine include enjoying a cup of relaxing herbal tea, journal writing or meditation, stretching my body and trying to make sure I get off my phone and technology 1 hour before I go to bed. I'm not so great at that last one, but I"m working on it!
It's really just about finding the little things that you can incorporate into your day, that help you feel cared for and grounded within yourself. Those things are different for everyone, and so I just urge you to start thinking about the things that you love, and how you can add them into your lifestyle in and around your children. Add in one thing each week and see how much better you feel knowing that your needs are being taken care of too.
Love Ally xx
I'm Ally Chick, founder and head Naturopath here at Alysia Chick Health.