How to Practice Self Care Anytime, Anywhere
Nourishing yourself takes on a new meaning when you become a mom. What felt good before kids isn't necessarily what feels good now. As moms, we are pouring from a different cup that requires care and attention to be refilled.
Take the quintessential bubble bath for example. Ever wonder why this is the first thing that many people suggest as a way to practice self care? It isn't the bubble bath itself that is self care, it is the act of getting to, getting in and getting out that is nourishing. You carve out the time to take the bath, you make sure all the things that bring you joy and ease are with you, you feel the warmth of the water soothing your body and washing away old stress, you get out of the bath with care and leave what you released in the water and watch it drain away.
It is not the act or event you choose to practice self care that is as important, it is about the intention and attention you bring to it. The benefit with this perspective is that you can practice self care ANYWHERE and ANYTIME just be shifting your focus back to you and asking yourself what it is you truly need. Practice these steps to bring more intention to self care and genuinely nourish YOU.
It is not the act or event you choose to practice self care that is as important, it is about the intention and attention you bring to it.
1. Identify why self care is important to you
This is essentially cultivating your purpose as to why self-care is needed, not just wanted, in your life. You can think of this as creating a mission statement or a vow to yourself; a commitment to your soul. "I choose to give loving attention to myself so I can continue to give loving attention to others." Or, "I empower myself to make self-care choices that reflect my value for connection and grace." Or, "I am a badass mom that needs to fill my damn cup." The last one is my own.
2. Shift your focus back to you.
Take a breath, close your eyes, put your hand over your heart. Yes, it is that simple.
3. Ask yourself what need do you need to meet?
With your hand still over your heart, which is where the answer will come from, ask yourself this question. You will likely notice that you tune into one or several basic needs. Hunger - Thirst - Rest - Control - Connection - Creativity - Desire. If you ask yourself and don't get an answer, know that is okay. The answer will eventually become more clear as you build trust with yourself; stay with this practice of shifting your focus back to you and asking yourself this question over and over.
4. Ask yourself where you can apply your attention to get your need met.
This is where you come up with the act or event that would bring you closure to meeting your need. It could be having a mindful snack, getting a drink of water, taking a 5 minute time out to rest or meditate, send a text or call a friend, join in with painting or drawing with your kiddos, or tuning into what would bring you pleasure in that moment.
5. Remind yourself why caring for yourself is important.
If getting into the practice of self care is difficult, which it tends to be, go back to your commitment statement you came up with at the beginning of this practice. Know that you DESERVE to live your life fully and with joy. Know you are WORTH the practice of self-care. Know that small, yet necessary, acts of self care add up in a big way.
6. Get into a habit of asking yourself what you need and meeting the need.
Set reminders on your phone to tune in, write a post-it note to yourself, put a reminder on your computer desktop, anything where you can visually see your commitment. Sometimes we get overwhelmed with the different ways to meet the need. I say, go with the first thing that pops up in your mind. The more you do this, the easier and more integrated this practice becomes.
Start this practice now. You deserve it mamas! Comment below and let us know what you do to practice self-care.