Self Care 101

When you're a mom, self care can get pushed to the back burner. There are always more "important" things to worry about than whether or not you feel taken care of. Kids are crying, the laundry needs to be folder, dinner needs to be cooked (and it can't be chicken nugs, again!) and there is always something pressing happening. Unfortunately, not taking care of yourself will negatively impact every other area of your life. I have learned this the hard way. I think the biggest "ah-hah" moment I've ever had was realizing that if I wasn't happy, I wouldn't do a great job at making anyone else happy. My marriage, my kid, my dogs- none of them would be happy or feel loved if I wasn't loving myself first.

I'm kind of a stickler for "self care" these days. I don't believe that self care is the same for everyone, but I believe there are some ground rules we need to set in order to get the same thing out of it.

  1. Self Care can not be for anyone else.

  2. Self Care should not create more issues than it solves.

  3. Self Care should be meaningful

  4. Self Care should be healthy

  5. Self Care should be safe

Okay- got a little weird at the end there, right? I think in order to practice real self care we need to be in a healthy state of mind. When I was super depressed a year and a half ago, my idea of self care was to eat a pint of Ben and Jerry's and half a sleeve of girl scout cookies in one sitting. NOT OKAY. Now that I am in a better state, self care or my favorite term "treat yo self" a la Parks and Rec, means things like cooking a healthy treat, (I love Keto Mug Cakes like this recipe, here) having a dance party with my husband and son or my favorite- listening to audible books.

I have always been a book nerd. I collect books and have read hundreds of them since I was old enough to read. When my husband introduced me to e-readers, I about lost my mind. I read book after book after book. THEN I blew my own mind with an audible membership and I haven't looked back. I listen to audible books almost every day!

Today I want to talk about one in particular. It was written by a lifestyle blogger turned media mogul named Rachel Hollis. She tells her story and goes over all the little ways she's lied to herself over the years, then breaks down how to undo those lies and move forward in a healthy way. You can find her book Girl Wash Your Face  on Amazon, Target, bookstores, everywhere. I bought mine on Audible, of course. She narrates the book which makes it EXTRA COOL. I love hearing the way authors actually intended for the book to sound.

Anyway, I listened to her book after watching one of her video ads on Facebook. I was hesitant because there was SO MUCH HYPE in my industry, and more often than not, hype is overrated. But I gave it a go. Oh. Em. Gee. Was I wrong or what. This book broke me down in ways I never even thought of. Our pal Rach tells us about lies that we don't even realize we're telling ourselves in the first place.

I truly believe that before you can practice self care in a healthy, meaningful way- you have to be healthy! You have to understand what actually nourishes and feeds your soul, how self care can help you grow and that it doesn't mean just getting a pedicure. I believe self care should push you and help you become a better, healthier, happier person. Yes, getting your nails done or taking a long bath can help you relax and put you in a good mood. I will never deny the power of a bubble bath and a glass of wine. BUT. Real Self Care, real personal development is so much more important than that. Learn from people who are doing it. Read books, watch videos, grow in whatever way you can. I promise that your spouse and your kids will love you for it. Haven't you ever heard the term "when mom is happy, the family is happy" ? It goes both ways. Take time for yourself. Love yourself. Figure out who you want to be and the path that you need to take to get there.