Starting a family is a significant milestone in people's lives. We want to cherish every moment we have with our kids, do things for them, raise them well, and shower them with unconditional love. But let's face it, being a parent may be rewarding but requires you to be on call 24/7, not to mention the day-to-day challenges you will be facing; parenting is a full-time job.
Raising kids needs your time and dedication. Although we love doing things for them, sometimes it can be tiring and exhausting. It's okay to take a break once in a while and reward yourself by fulfilling your needs. It can be a whole day of quiet time, a peaceful bath, shopping for your needs, or a day of pampering. You can ask your partner or assign a trusted caregiver to look after your child. Do not feel guilty for these simple pleasures. It is important to have a healthy body and mind to function well and be more effective as a parent. Doing something nice for ourselves is not being self-centered, selfish, or self-indulged. It is about having a balanced life. After a tiring day, parents deserve themselves a treat, they can either have a warm bath to relax, eat their favorite snack, read a book, binge-watch a series or just have a good night sleep.
The concept of self-care is that, in order to be effective and be our best selves, we must first take care of our needs. Make sure you are fulfilling the basics such as, eating healthy, resting well, proper hygiene, exercise, etc. then to your other needs or wants like getting a haircut, going to a spa, or eating the food you crave.
As for keeping a healthy mind, learn how to be optimistic, be adaptable to change, avoid stressors, distance from things or people that will disturb our peace and maintain healthy relationships.
Prolonged stress and exhaustion can lead to anxiety and depression and might affect our responsibilities and our kids. It is important that we look after ourselves and be healthy in both physical and mental aspect so we can take care of the people we love. If you think you are experiencing anxiety or depression, it is best to seek professional help.
As for your kids, teaching them self-care is also essential for their well-being. The best way to teach them is to be the role model. You can teach them to eat healthy foods, take a nap after school, sleep early, practice good hygiene, and many more. If those practices helps you maintain your physical and mental health then it will have the same effects on your child.
5 Self-Care Tips for Parents
Sleep. When you are well-rested, it feels like you are ready to take on the world. Find a way for you to have a good night sleep, whether, asking your partner, family member or a caregiver for help looking out for your child.
Exercise. I know most of the parents have no time to do this however, doing a simple exercise can make you feel great after. With regular exercises, it feels like you can do anything. Walking, or doing light exercises at home are still considered movement and can help regulate your blood, burn fat, alleviate anxiety, depression and more. 5 minutes of your time doing simple movements can make a difference.
Reflect or write a journal. Keeping a journal can be a good idea especially if you are stressed, having anxiety and depression. It is good to let your feelings out without the judgement of others. It is good to write your thoughts so you can understand them more clearly. It is also a form of reflection, you can write down your fears, problems, what you want to do in life, the goals you want to achieve. Journaling can help you manage anxiety, control your emotions and improve your mental health.
Do things that can improve your mental health. Talk to family members, give them a call. Spend time with the people who loves you. Do things or hobbies you love. Listen to music. Take a walk in the park, enjoy a good scenery. Do the things that makes you happy and uplifts your spirit.
Learn about mindful parenting. Mindful parenting has a lot of benefits. It can help you gain more control over your behavior, help you to be kinder, more focus, reduce stress, tension and many more. Mindfulness is paying attention at the present moment without controlling, judging, or changing it. You can learn how to manage overwhelming thoughts or emotions by focusing at the present time and accepting what is happening here and now.