In today’s social media age, selfcare has become somewhat of a buzzword or the “it” thing to do and seems ridiculously unattainable for the everyday mom. Just look up #selfcare on Instagram and you will see people meditating in exotic places, bath tubs filled with bubbles and rose petals, super fit people posing in gym mirrors and ridiculous yoga poses that look like they could injure you for life. One scroll through that feed makes you want to pour a big glass of wine, reassess your life and veg out on trash tv or Candy Crush. But the truth is selfcare isn’t fancy or exotic or unattainable for anyone. Selfcare is actually quite basic and is often the thing we moms know we should do but we can always find a reason to avoid. I can almost guarantee one of these is a form of selfcare moms are probably avoiding…
- Doctor Appointments. When our children have an issue whether it’s an illness, pain or issue affecting their everyday functioning, we make a doctor’s appointment right away. Yet for ourselves, we postpone doctor appointments and come up with hundreds of excuses why we just can’t fit it into the schedule. But you know you need to make a doctor appointment for that sinus problem you have had for months, the checkup you haven’t gotten in 2 years, the toothache you are ignoring, the breast exam you have been shrugging off or the many other things you are avoiding. I know no mom wants to spend an hour or more of her day sitting on a cold exam table with a paper robe because you have a crap ton of other things to do. But it’s important because the last thing you want is for that minor health issue to become a bigger problem simply because you didn’t make the time to address it.
- Mental Healthcare. As woman and moms, many of us have a “get it done” mentality aka “super mom syndrome.” We suck it up in order to get things done and end up operating in survival mode while suffering from anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. We avoid addressing it because it is scary, taboo, hard to talk about and we are sure people will judge us. But impaired mental health can impact so many other areas of your life and like the saying goes “If momma isn’t happy, nobody is happy.” So see the therapist, get the prescription or whatever it is you need to do to get back to feeling like yourself.
- Regular Workout Routines. Let’s just be honest… working out is not what most people want to spend their time doing. Do you know how many times I have dressed in workout clothes only to avoid working out until I no longer have the time to do so??? I know I am not the only one because making and sticking to a regular workout schedule is hard. It takes discipline, perseverance and energy and frankly I use most of that up just trying to get my kids out the door and to school on time without yelling at everyone. But the crazy thing is working out on a regular basis gives you more energy to deal with all the crazy that comes along with mom life. I know it’s a cruel joke but just 30 minutes a day can make a huge difference
- Healthy Eating. Chips, soda, sweets, French fries, chocolate…. It’s all delicious. And boxed mac & cheese, fast food or a bowl of cereal are easy go to meals at the end of a long day of parenting. But the truth is proper diet is key to functioning at your highest self and reducing the effects of mom brain. Your body needs fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins in order to function well. So stop fooling yourself that eating that box of cookies after the kids go to bed is selfcare because you and I both know better.
- Drinking Water. I know…I know… I know…Water is boring, water has no taste, and it’s a pain in the butt carrying water bottles with you everywhere. Coffee, wine and soda are much more appealing options for several different reasons. Besides the fact that humans need water to survive, drinking enough water is one of the simplest ways to better your overall health. It can improve your skin, hair and nails, curbs your cravings, flushes toxins from your body, helps reduce inflammation and so many other things. I am not saying give up coffee or wine or whatever you drink to get you through your day…I would be a hypocrite to say that…just add some glasses of water throughout the day.
- Sleep. I don’t think any of us purposely avoid sleep. I mean that just sounds ridiculous. Who would want to avoid one of the most glorious things known to mankind? What many of us do is avoid going to sleep to do things we try to pass off as selfcare like binge watching Netflix, zoning out on Candy Crush or stuffing our face with the goodies we don’t want to share with our children. Hey…sometimes this is selfcare but when you sacrifice a necessity and then end up paying for it when you miserably drag yourself out of bed in the morning it’s just not worth it.
What selfcare are you probably avoiding?
Elisha Beach is a stay-at-home mom to four kids and stepmom to 4 step-“adults”…Yes, you read that right—eight kids. She is a wife, home cook, taxi driver, herder of children, terrible housekeeper and founder of The Mom Forum.
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