Tips for Self-Care
The Whys and Hows of Self-Care
“If you are to be a light for those you love, you must find ways to
nourish yourself, to feed your fire & keep it burning.”
First things first: What parent has time to take care of themselves while also taking care of their family, especially when there is a new baby in the picture? Answer – we all do, but we have to prioritize it, which means fully appreciating how essential it is. Self-care should not be a luxury, but instead, one of our daily chores. Self-care is not selfish - it is an important part of caring for others.
WHAT IS SELF CARE?:
Self-care is tricky to define, because it is different for all of us. Essentially, self-care is exactly what it sounds like: taking care of ourselves by fulfilling our own needs. Our needs include (but are not limited to):
Which of these needs stick out to you that you need to meet for yourself?
HOW TO SELF CARE:
adapted from article on motherly.com
I will take a hot shower or bath
I will eat at least one nourishing meal while sitting down at a table
I will keep myself well hydrated throughout the day
I will make sure I laugh today
Try calling a friend who can find humor in anything or watching a funny show or YouTube video
I will ground myself for a few moments (especially during a chaotic time)
Try out meditation, prayer, yoga, deep breathing, writing, reading, journaling, or practicing gratitude.
I will move my body
Try taking a short walk around the block or up and down the stairs, doing 10 minutes of stretching or dancing!
I will connect with my partner about something other than the baby
Try out a thoughtful text, a hug or kiss, or a glass of wine or tea after bedtime.
I will do something for myself that makes me feel special and ignites inner joy
Try getting a manicure, buying a new fun lipstick, meeting a friend for lunch, etc.
This one really depends on YOU! What makes you feel special and/or joyful?!
I will honor my body’s need for sleep
This might mean forgoing cleaning, laundry or cooking, and that’s okay.
I will say “no” to tasks or people when I cannot do more than I am doing
Author: Abby Underwood, LCSW at MU Psychological Services Clinic.
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