These self-care ideas for moms are must-know if you are one of those people who craves alone time and doesn’t know what to do with it when you get it!
Ironically, it’s a dad who is going to share some of these essential self-care strategies with us today. Taking care of kids is the most demanding job, whether you are a mom or a teacher, Dan Tricarico is a dad, and has been a teacher for 27 years in the same school, and the same classroom. (and the first dad to be a guest on the MomUp Show!)
He loves what he does and can’t imagine doing anything else, but at some point, the stress reached a boiling point. Class sizes grew, there was less funding, the pay wasn’t awesome, and Dan needed to figure out how to deal with the pressure so he could do his job and not lose his mind.
As he figured it out, he started sharing how to keep your cool and stay mindful as a teacher through the Zen Teacher.
The response was awesome, and Dan realized it wasn’t just him! Teachers all over were dealing with the same issues he was, and now he’s sharing his favorite self-care strategies with us so moms can benefit from these self-care ideas too.
(FYI. Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning that at no additional cost to you, I make a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.)
These self-care strategies might have been curated for teachers, but are applicable to anyone in any field, especially moms and stay-at-home-moms.
Give yourself permission
The first thing you have to do to even begin a self-care practice and using self-care strategies is to actually give yourself permission to take care of yourself.
It is not selfish to take care of yourself. Perhaps you can do anything huge like take a fancy vacation away, but give yourself permission to take a little time for yourself to ensure that you are refilling your tank on a regular basis.
This is one of those places that mom guilt (or dad guilt) tends to creep in because we are so used to taking care of everyone else but ourselves.
Use the 5, 10, 15 formula
This formula is such a simple self-care strategy that takes such little effort, anyone can do it, even overworked and stressed mamas.
You just focus on spend 5 minutes, 10 minutes and 15 minutes doing something for yourself.
One of the reasons we don’t have self-care practices is because we turn it into more than it needs to be in our minds. It’s not always about big nights out or weekends away or some grand vacation. Many times, just making sure we take these small slivers of time for ourselves on a regular basis can be incredibly helpful in our overall wellbeing.
Most kids and households run on some sort of schedule or routine. You know your children and when there might be some time to take for yourself. For example, when are your kids most happy and content to play alone for 5-10 minutes? Can you just take those few minutes to do a quick meditation?
Get your parter to buy into self-care too
So many times moms turn themselves into martyrs instead of taking responsibility and ownership of their self-care, and this extends to getting our partners to buy in. So many moms complain that their partners aren’t doing enough to help them and that they don’t have time because they need their partner to pick up the slack, but perhaps this is partly due to our failure to communicate our needs.
While there are definitely deadbeat dads out there who don’t help mamas out when they are overwhelmed, there are probably plenty who just don’t really understand what our needs are.
Next time you want to complain, instead try to simply tell your partner exactly what you need. Dan describes a great idea that he calls “my hour, your hour.” It’s as basic as it sounds. When his kids were little he would watch the kids for an hour while his wife had a chance to take care of herself and her needs, and then they would switch and he had an hour to himself.
Studies have shown a pretty big swing towards dads taking on more responsibility when it comes to parenting, spending more time than ever with their children. So just as much as we need to ensure we are getting adequate self-care in, our partners need it too.
Not to mention that they will probably be more amenable to our needs if theirs are a priority as well.
Reconnect with yourself
How often do you finally get some time alone, and you just end up scrolling through Facebook all day instead of actually doing something restorative?
Dan tells a story in our chat about how when they first started playing the your hour my hours game, his wife didn’t even know what to do with her hour because she had been so conditioned to not think about herself and her own needs.
Take the time you do have to reconnect with yourself and figure out what you want to do. It may feel weird at first, but with some practice you’ll remember what it’s like to just do things because you want to.
Dan and I chat about all of this and much more! Listen in and subscribe on iTunes to get more self-care ideas for moms.
Dan Tricarico has been a high school English teacher for over twenty-five years.
He is also the author of The Zen Teacher: Creating Focus, Simplicity, and Tranquility in the Classroom (DBC, Inc. 2015) and Sanctuaries: Self-Care Secrets for Stressed Out Teachers (DBC, Inc. 2018). In his spare time, he enjoys writing fiction, listening to music, reading mystery novels, staring out of windows, and watching movies. One of his first loves is writing poetry, and he has published many poems both in print and on-line.
GET “THE 7 SELF-CARE SECRETS FOR STRESSED-OUT TEACHERS” FREE at www.thezenteacher.com/start-here
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