self-care part one

This is the second post that is part of a series I started on Balance.  You can read my last post here.

Self-care is not a term I had heard before last year.  It was mentioned in one of the wonderful workshops that Heather Bruggeman puts on a couple times each year.

Self-care refers to the actions and attitudes which contribute to the maintenance of well-being and personal health and promote human development. – Wikipedia

Well, that sounds important, doesn’t it?  Of course, me being me, I didn’t find it important until a little over a year ago.  I am not sure how it happened, but I decided to put myself on the back burner, and instead tried to take care of everyone else around me.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I still do that, but differently now.

Last month I took a new online workshop with Heather, called Hibernate.  It was a wonderful workshop.  Winter is a difficult time for me.  The lack of sun, and the incredibly cold temperatures, really take their toll on me.  Hibernate is exactly what I want to do.  Of course, that isn’t completely realistic considering I have two littles and a husband to care for, but the idea of it sounded wonderful.

It was worth it.  This workshop allowed me to think a little bit deeper about life.  It allowed me to question what the “important” things are to me.  How do I want to treat myself?  Do I want to stuff myself in a corner until I am completely depleted and no longer able to help anyone at all, or do I want to be positive, and feel as though I am making a difference, and still full of life?  Even if I still really just want to get into my warm bed, because it is just that – warm.

What are some things that I am doing to concentrate a bit more on self-care?  Well, first off I reinstated quiet time in our home.  So far it is working – although I definitely don’t think quiet should be in the title.  But, they are playing upstairs, in their bedroom, for a set amount of time each day, where I can be someplace else, and not be concerned with what they are doing (for the most part).  

Typically, if I have down time, I am trying to accomplish one.more.thing.  But, I decided that this mama could use a little quiet time as well, and I have been using the time to work on some knitting; something that gives me a lot of joy, and also calms me down.  I changed my bedtime routine a bit, so that I do a lot more of my daily Bible reading in the evening instead, as well as a few other things, it gives me a little more time to journal in the morning, and I don’t feel as flustered because I have fewer things to do. 

It is a learning process though, self-care.  I would say that it is easy for me to put myself on the back burner, or to go go go until I am completely burnt out.  I am finally realizing that is not an option, and I need to take better care of myself, so that I can take better care of my kids.  I don’t want my kids to see me frazzled all the time (some of the time is ok!), instead I want them to see someone who enjoys creativity, and is constantly striving to learn new things.  If I am burnt out, what they see is someone who is stressed, someone who doesn’t want to be bothered, and someone who hides in the bathroom pretending to do laundry.  Taking a step back and realizing that those things were happening in my life made me reevaluate what I was doing to get to that point, and how I could change it.

Do you practice self-care?  Are there mini-retreats built into your life for you to decompress and take time for yourself?  How did you accomplish it with littles?

1 comment:

  1. Great post! It is really important to give yourself time to reconnect with friends, journal and do the things you love to do most in order to have the energy and focus needed to be (for me) the type of Mom I want to be. It's a journey. Part of self care for me is taking time to sit down and eat healthy instead of picking or eating on the fly. I think a calm, warm environment is key, again it's a process…


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