You have probably been on a plane and listened to the pre-flight safety instructions to “put the oxygen mask on yourself first.” YOU first, and then your child. By now, you may have even heard this metaphor applied to self-care. So let’s dig in.
You know that taking care of yourself is important, but when life is so busy, you feel guilty every time you shift your focus from other people to yourself. You’re not the only mom who feels that way.
You will do whatever you can to take care of your child. Growing up, you probably even learned the practice of caring for others before yourself from your own mother. So no wonder your natural tendency is to put the oxygen mask on your child first.
But don’t you think you’ll be more help to your child when your own oxygen is safely flowing? When your mind and body are fully nourished so that you can be fully present to give your child the care she needs?
Self-care if not an act of selfishness. Self-care is a necessity. You can only take care of others if you care for yourself first.
For many years, I took care of everybody else but me. I was unhealthy, unhappy, and 90 pounds heavier than I am now. My mom never took good care of herself, and she died in an early age. Her passing led me to get clear with my priorities and got me started on a journey of caring for myself better.
When my children were younger, I had to come up with creative ways to get them involved in my self-care practice. Looking back, teaching my children self-care at an early age was a big choice because now, as young adults, they know how to take care of themselves.
If you are a mom of young children, and you work outside your home, one of the hardest transitions in your day is coming back from work and starting your second full-time job at home. If you are a stay-at-home mom, it can be hard for you to blend some alone time into your busy day.
I want you to consider creating 15 minutes of self-care time—just for you—and integrate it into your day, every day!
If you can create a morning routine—great! Starting your day with intention, centered and grounded, helps you to be calmer and less reactive throughout your day.
BUT if you are too tired to or don’t have time to start your day with a morning routine, you’re not the only one. Most busy moms can relate. You can get inspired with some ideas on how to fill up your energy tank in this article I previously wrote.
Another really important habit for moms to create is an after work “switching gears” routine.
After work and before dinner, create a family routine of self-care.
Tell your kids why you need that 15-minute break. ASK FOR THEIR HELP. Get them involved.
Teach them to have some quiet time in their rooms—maybe reading or resting—at the same time you are in your room having your own quiet time.
Close the door.
Lock the door. Yes! Lock it!
To prepare for this new routine, sit together as family and make a list of quiet time activities: taking a nap, listening to music, reading a book, listening to guided meditation, journaling, etc.
Then give your children an art project.
Ask them to make a sign for your door: “Mommy’s Quiet Time.”
Tell them each day before you start your self-care time, and ask them to make sure the house is quiet and that nobody enters your room.
When you ask for their support and get them on board with your plan, you teach them self-care.
If you have a desire to model self-care for your kids and to take better care of yourself, consider learning Reiki.
There are lots of moms in my Reiki community. Many of them report that learning Reiki improved their physical and emotional health. They have more energy. They are less reactive when facing a crisis or an obstacle. They have a tool they can use to help them bounce back quickly. They take good care of themselves.
Self-Reiki is a simple practice you can do anywhere, anytime, with or without your kids. With Reiki, you are connecting with pure, positive universal energy. When you give Reiki to yourself, even for only 5 minutes, you will feel centered, grounded, and energized. Then you can easily be the patient and kind mom you want to be.
The bottom line:
- Add 15-minutes of self-care into your day, every day. Come up with creative ideas to get your children on board.
- Join millions of moms all over the world and learn to give Reiki to yourself.
Visit the Reiki page on my website to learn more.