If there’s one thing I keep hearing from moms, particularly moms of young kids, it’s that they’re somehow bad at self-care.
There is literally no truth to this.
No one is bad at self-care. You can’t be.
The problem is usually that you simply don’t know the best way to take care of yourself, which sounds a little crazy.
I mean, how could I not know how to take care of myself, right?
It’s me, we’re talking about here. Who knows how to take care of me better than me?
This is the trap that so many moms find themselves in.
We’re told that we need to take better care of ourselves and at the same time, we kind of forget what we love to do after we have kids.
Kids are the ultimate brainwashers.
They’re so adorable that they make us think that we love to make crafts out of popsicle sticks and necklaces out of macaroni.
They warp our minds with their sticky smiles and unconditional love, making us think that racing cars down a slide or playing dinosaur battle is our favorite way to spend an afternoon.
As our lives start to fill up with dirty diapers and laundry and noisy toys and Paw Patrol, we get so wrapped up in all of the new stuff that we don’t feel like we have room for the old stuff of our pre-kid lives.
So not only do we forget how to take care of ourselves, but we think that we don’t have the time or space in our new extra busy moms lives to take care of ourselves either.
And this leads moms to think they’re bad at self-care.
Let me say this again:
You can’t be bad at self-care.
You can have a huge misunderstanding about what self-care actually is and a little mom-nesia about what makes you feel good.
There are a few things I think all moms need to know about self-care so they stop thinking they’re bad at it.
First, Self-Care isn’t one size fits all.
Not all self-care is made equal for every person. And not all situations require the same type of care.
What most people need to realize is that self-care can do 1 of 2 things for you:
Self-care can nourish you and self-care can bring you more into balance.
And even further, depending on your own needs, desires, tendencies, and characteristics, what nourishes you will be different than what nourishes someone else.
Same thing goes for balance.
Think of it this way:
The actions that nourish you are those things that make you feel good. You automatically gravitate to them. You seek them out.
Bringing yourself into balance is the opposite. These are things you don’t necessarily gravitate to, but every once in awhile, you need deeply.
The other thing you need to remember about self-care is that it’s not always just about relaxation.
Sometimes self-care can be stimulating.
This goes back to the idea of nourishing yourself vs bringing your energy more into balance.
For some people, relaxation is what they gravitate to and it’s deeply nourishing. For others, relaxation is super necessary and also super difficult.
(Raises hand slowly)
I think it’s another lie we tell ourselves that all self-care, particularly for moms, is of the relaxation-brand when in fact, it depends on what each mom needs uniquely.
And here’s one more little reminder:
Self-care isn’t just about tending to your body. Your mind and your spirit need care and attention, too.
So many of the traditional norms of self-care tend to fall in the body and relaxation categories.
Massage, facials, mani/pedis, spa days, bubble baths — all of these are relaxation based and primarily physically.
They’re also limiting your capacity to take care of yourself.
When it comes to self-care, you need to think outside of the box. This doesn’t mean you should aim for massages or schedule a spa day if you love those things. It’s more a reminder that you’re not bad at self-care if you don’t do them. Or if you don’t love them.
So instead of assuming that you’re bad at self-care, why not shift your perspective and reconsider what taking care of yourself really looks like.
What lights you up?
What makes you feel good?
What do you sometimes resist, but when you actually do it is exactly what you needed?
Answer these questions and get started on being an expert on your own self-care!
Need more inspiration? Take my Self-Care Style quiz to learn a little more about your tendencies (aka DOSHAS) and discover a few simple ways that you can take care of yourself, even when you think you don’t have time.
You can also join my upcoming Self-Care Reset. It’s FREE 5 day program that will help you rebuild your self-care practices and recommit to yourself!