“You can’t pour from an empty cup. Take care of yourself first!”
If making your own self-care a priority makes you feel guilty (I find this is especially true for women with children), I want to share with you a phase that was shared with me, when I felt this way a few months after my daughter was born.
She said, “Courtney as mothers, we’ll do absolutely anything for our children. Except, it seems, take care of ourselves.
Please, if you’re a mom reading this, write that down and read it daily. Or pass it on to a mom in your life.
Taking care of yourself is just as important as making sure your children have clean clothes to wear and food to eat.
For me, I have to make self-care part of my to-do list—quite literally.
I intentionally schedule in one or more self-care practices EVERYDAY, right alongside “do the laundry” and “book a dentist appointment for the kids”. They are just as non-negotiable as getting the dishes done or cooking supper.
In today’s blog post I’m sharing with you my personal list of self-care ideas. Feel free to use my ideas to inspire you to create your own “go-to” list.
As a working mom with two small children it’s unrealistic of me to think that I can commit to an hour or two of self-care every day, so I’ve divided my list into three time categories.
Whether I have 5 minutes, 30 minutes or two hours, I do what I can with the time I DO have and I’m encouraging you to do the same.
5-10 Minutes Self-Care Ideas:
- Vent by free-writing in my journal.
- Preform the 4-7-8 breathing exercise.
- Unfollow “friends” in my social media feeds that are no longer a source of light in my life.
- Intentionally find five unexpected beautiful things on my drive home from dropping off the kids to school.
- Read an article in a magazine.
- Write encouraging affirmations or inspirational quotes on Post-its and place them where I will see them throughout the day.
- Light candles around the house.
- Lie down on the ground for a few minutes.
- Light a candle in a dark room and sit in silence.
- Put on a face mask. I LOVE the doTERRA Mud Mask.
- Exfoliate my skin. I use doTERRA SPA Exfoliating Body
- Sit in a coffee shop and people watch.
- Sit outside under the sun.
- Turn on my essential oil diffuser.
- Apply essential oils. I only use doTERRA essential oils.
- Light incense sticks.
- Watch funny Youtube videos.
- Wear an outfit that makes me feel good.
- Watch the sun rise or set and resist the urge to take a picture or post about it on social media.
- Call a trusted friend or family member and talk things out.
- Fix a small annoyance that’s been bothering me around the house.
- Buy myself flowers.
- Say “no” to someone.
- Cancel plans and stay at home.
- Declutter my wardrobe by picking three items from my closet that I don’t enjoy wearing anymore, and donate it.
- Breakout into a dance party to my favorite tunes.
- Sing at the top of my lungs, usually in the car.
- Go to bed early or sleep in late.
- Research something that I’ve been interested in but haven’t made the time to do.
- Make myself a batch ofinfused water.
30-60 Minutes Self-Care Ideas:
- Read inspiring stories of people who overcame adversity.
- Unplug from email and social media.
- Listen to a chapter or two from an audio book.
- Create a new playlist that aligns with my current mood.
- Give something unconditionally, with no strings attached.
- Practice yoga.
- Wrap myself up in a cozy sweater and pour myself a cup of hot tea.
- Enjoy a long, Epsom salts bath, infused with essential oil.
- Dry skin brush and take a long shower.
- Take the time to do my hair and put on make-up for no other reason than it make myself feel good.
- Revisit happier times by reading old emails or cards from friends and family.
- Declutter a spot in my house that’s been bugging me.
- Listen to the latest episode of my favorite podcast.
- Enjoy my morning ritual, which always includes tarot cards, incense and journaling.
- Go to a library or bookstore. Sit in a comfy chair and read.
- Visit a health store and treat myself to sometime.
60 Minutes or More Self-Care Ideas:
- Take a nap without an alarm clock.
- Take a mental health day and feel not an ounce of guilt about it.
- Write a list of “annoying tasks” that have been weighing on me, set an alarm and complete as many tasks as I can in 1-hour.
- Get a foot massage.
- Get a head massage.
- Get a back massage.
- Get a facial.
- Allow myself a “Netflix day”. I’m currently binge watching “Suits”.
- Attend a retreat.
- Take a detox from social media. Which is just did for 24-hours.
- Attend a spiritual gathering, such as a New Moon or Full Moon Ceremony, OR Monday night Dyads or Sunday night chant at the Lotus Center.
- Do some hardcore nesting and make my home or a room in my home extra cozy, beautiful, and calming.
- Take a leisurely walk outside without a goal
- Go for a drive—no destination required.
- Binge read on a new book. I’m currently readying a Tribe Called Bliss by Lori Harder.
Did you enjoy this self-care ideas post?
Did you discover a new self-care idea that you might not have thought about before?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. AND PLEASE share this blog and list of self-care ideas with your girlfriends and on your favorite social media platform.