You Matter, Mama: 10 Ways to Slip (Long Overdue!) Self-Care into Your Day

You've put yourself on the back burner long enough... it's YOUR turn

by Nancy Reynolds

This Post: You Matter, Mama: 10 Ways to Slip Self-Care into Your Day

Written by: Morgan Hill

I know how it goes, moms… you always put yourself last.

No matter how tired, worn-out, drained, or overwhelmed you are, you keep going. You get up every day and you do it all again.

You don’t take time for yourself. You constantly make sacrifices your family never sees. And, you don’t give yourself the same grace, attention, and love you give everyone else. I know… because that’s how I used to be. But you need to remember something…

You matter, mama.

You matter because your kids need you.

You matter because you are the game-changer.

You matter because you are the glue that holds your family together.

You matter because you are your children’s mother and you can never be replaced.

Let’s face it. You are the planner, the organizer, the thinker, the overthinker, the overreactor, the worrier, and the regretter. You are the fixer, the doubter, the encourager, the supporter, and the one who is in charge of remembering it ALL.

And, it’s all so exhausting, I know.

That’s why you deserve to be pampered and catered to. Because when you’re happy, healthy, rested, and feeling emotionally strong, you’re a better mom.

So, stop putting yourself last! Even if you take 15 minutes a day to focus on yourself, give yourself permission to say, “It’s my turn.”  Here are a few ideas to slip self-care into your day. 

You Matter, Mama: 10 Ways to Slip Self-Care Into Your Day

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1. Sneak Away for a 20-Minute (Luxurious) Power Nap 

I know, your unmade bed from a rushed morning or that pile of clothes on the chair that you’re too tired to put away keeps you from viewing your room as the sanctuary it should be. But with a few minor tweaks, your bedroom CAN become your go-to place to regroup and refresh your mind, heart, and soul.

Start by making your bed a comfy slice of heaven. Buy yourself a sinkably soft comforter, a satin pillowcase, or a luxuriously soft blanket to wrap yourself in when you need to get away and regroup. Then, when life gets hard and you need a break, head to your ultimate escape to nap, read a book, or catch up on your favorite Netflix series.

2. Slip Into Something Comfy

The next time you’re buying your teen a cozy (and expensive!) hoodie, why not spring for something comfy for yourself?

Buy the comfiest yoga pants and soft t-shirt you can find or a pair of fabulous fuzzy slippers (so you can kick your feet up AND feel comfy and pretty) or jammies that feel like you’re wrapped in a big hug. When you’re stressed or overwhelmed, it can do wonders to slip into something comfortable and soft.

3. A Little Sip of Something

It’s amazing what the perfect cup of coffee can do for you in the morning or how a cup of tea or iced coffee in the afternoon can somehow center you, or how a relaxing glass of wine can take the edge off after a long day. Those “mini-moments” of “me time” hold so much power to help keep life in perspective and de-stress us. 

So, go ahead. Buy yourself a pretty tea cup, a few specialty coffee syrups, or indulge in a bottle of your favorite wine. Just slow down long enough to sip on something you love.

4. Light a Scented Candle

Did you know that scents send signals to the part of our brain that controls memory and emotion? One study found that certain fragrances have been proven to lower stress levels and actually improve our overall mental outlook. 

So, break out the scented candle, mama. (Discount stores like TJ Maxx, Marshals, Ross, and other stores offer a great selection of candles that won’t break the bank.)

5. Pamper Yourself at Home “Spa Style”

Even though you might be prioritizing self-care and truly deserve a spa day, it may be financially out of reach or you just can’t squeeze in the time to get away. The good news is, you can recreate a spa day right at home.

Start with a long, hot shower (check out these cool shower steamers!) and apply this guacamole deep moisture mask to your hair, then cover up your hair with an adorable shower cap while it sinks in. Tend to your toes with a mango, four-step care pedicure kit to keep your tootsies ready for anything. Next, apply a face mask (check out this one with tons of positive reviews!) to keep those wrinkles at bay (ahem, we’re raising teenagers… we NEED that)… then, kick up those fabulous-looking feet, and take a little power snooze. 

6. Spring for a Relaxing Mani-Pedi or Massage

I know… they aren’t cheap. But boy… they sure can make you feel good! Even if you spring for a mani-pedi seasonally or you splurge and get a massage two or three times a year, you really do deserve it. You’ve put yourself on the back burner long enough. It’s your turn!

7. Break Away for Coffee or Lunch with a Friend

When was the last time you grabbed coffee with a friend or enjoyed a long two or three-hour lunch with girlfriends you haven’t seen in ages?

Nothing can make us feel more “human” and less like the “always-on-the-go Mom” we are than a chilled lunch with mom friends just sharing life. Pick up the phone, send a text, ring her doorbell… make it a point today to get a date on the calendar with a friend.

8. Stroll Through a Store

Grab yourself your favorite brew from Starbucks or your favorite iced tea from that little cafe’ you love and just stroll. Whether you stroll through Target, the mall, or an outdoor shopping venue with lots of little specialty shops (even if you can’t afford to buy anything), just give yourself time and space to drift away and think of something (anything) else other than being a mom. 

9. Buy Yourself Something

A little retail therapy goes a long way! Buy yourself a new top, a new pair of jeans or yoga pants, a new necklace, or a new pair of earrings. Or, join that hobby class you’ve been eyeing or sign up for that ladies’ luncheon you’ve thought about going to through your church.

Even if you stop by the florist and buy yourself a pretty bouquet of flowers… buy yourself something. It doesn’t have to be costly or extravagant, just a little something that brings you joy

10. Say “NO” to Some Things and “YES” to Other Things

Our kids ask for a ride, we say “Yes.” Our husband or friend or co-worker asks us for a favor and we say, “Yes.” And, we should say yes from time to time. But not ALL the time. Get in the habit of saying “No.” Protect your peace and downtime. THEN, start saying “YES” to eating healthily, going to the gym, and catching up on those doctor’s appointments you’ve been putting off. You have to make it a point to slip self-care into your day – if you don’t put it as a priority, I promise you this… no one else will. 

It’s your turn, Mom. Slip self-care into your day! Make a list of things that make you feel happy, re-energized, peaceful, and relaxed, and take time to do those things regularly. I know it’s not always easy OR convenient, but taking care of yourself is not only good for you, it’s good for your family.

About Morgan Hill

Morgan Hill is an essayist and humorist. She has written for many online and print publications including Insider, Your Teen Magazine, Revel, and MASK Magazine. She is the mother of freshman and senior sons in high school. When not writing, she can be found at flea markets, in her garden, photographing architecture, taking cooking classes, or eating the stinkiest cheese she can find. You can also find her on Twitter @MorganHWrites or Instagram @MorganHillWriter

If you enjoyed reading, “You Matter, Mama: 10 Ways to Slip (Much Needed!) Self-Care into Your Day,” here are a few other posts you might like to read:

The Mental Load of Motherhood: The Side Our Family Never Sees

Dear Struggling Parents, It’s Not Just You. Parenting Teens is Hard

To The Mom Whose Heart is Heavy for Her Child, You Are Not Alone

Tell us, mamas! How do YOU slip self-care into your day? Let’s share ideas! 

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