Making Time for Yourself in Motherhood

Being a mom is a lot of things – most of them wonderful. But it is also tough. SO tough sometimes! It’s a lot more difficult than I had anticipated anyway. I was a full-time nanny for 8 years before becoming a mother, so I really did think I was prepared. But it’s just different. You don’t get to clock out at 6 pm, or sleep through the night and show up at 7 or 8 am the next day. The commitment and investment is definitely physically and emotionally exhausting.

I’ve learned that I NEED time to myself in order to recharge, remember who I am besides Mom and Wife and housekeeper and chef. It’s important that I really make intentional time for this in my week in order to survive. And not JUST survive, but to come home to my family and be the best version of myself. Renewed. Recharged. Energized. This has made a world of a difference for me, so I bet it would for you too. I want to help you make it work.

The first step is working out HOW to make it happen and how much time you want/need. Is nap time enough for you to feel energized again? Personally, I need more than that. I usually like to use nap time to clean up or work or exercise. My husband and I have worked it out for me to a have a designated time once a week to get out of the house when he gets off work. Maybe for whatever reason, this isn’t an option for you. Great babysitters do exist! Get a recommendation from a friend, or ask around in your church or neighborhood. Budget a little tight for a babysitter? Maybe you have a parent or family member that can watch the kids once a week to help make this happen. No? Maybe you can switch off with a friend once a week or even every other week. Watch her kids one week, and she’ll watch yours the next. The point is if you make this a priority, you can find a way to make it work. (And once you do getaway, you’re going to want to make it a priority!)

Okay, so you have an hour or two to yourself – now what??? The options are endless really. What do you like to do? Sometimes as a mom this question is really hard to answer. We get so caught up in taking care of our family, we forget about ourselves and our own hobbies and things we love. (That’s why we’re doing this!) Sometimes when I’m feeling particularly lost, I just take this time to journal, reflect, and get to know myself again. Questions like the following are helpful:

Personally, I switch it up all the time. Sometimes it’s browsing Target or TJ Maxx, grabbing a drink from a local coffee shop and reading a book. One of my favorites and most common activities is going for a bike ride. I’ll pretty much go any time of year as long as it’s not raining or snowing. Or I’ll go to a gym class or go for a hike. I just had some me time this morning, and I actually just went to grab a couple things from the grocery store, then I was just driving around listening to a podcast and ended up at one of my usual spots. I like to end up there and watch the sunset because it has a gorgeous view, but I never really get out of the car. Today I did because it was snowing and just so peaceful! I stumbled upon a trail and took a little hike for a few minutes. It was perfect and just what I needed.

Today I was literally gone for less than an hour and I felt so inspired and rejuvenated when I got home. It really doesn’t take much to take care of ourselves. The hardest part is making space in our calendars to make it happen. But once you do, you will not regret it!

Mama, this week I challenge you to talk to your significant other, grandparent, friend, babysitter, etc, and work this time for yourself into your schedule. Then come back and let me know what you did and how it benefited you! I can’t wait to hear all about it.

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