29 May Practice Self-Care to Be a Better Parent
How do you take care of yourself?
We at The Nanny Line are worried about you stressed-out, overtired, over-committed parents and we want to help. Not just by offering you an army of experienced, fun-loving, and pre-screened babysitters at your fingertips, but by helping you to learn to take better care of yourself. So, we ask you to take a minute to think about the question, “How Do I Take Care of Myself?”
Self-care does not have to be something as major as an Ibiza holiday or a Madrid girls’ weekend. Here are some ideas:
- Schedule a phone date with an old friend
- Read a book for pleasure instead of answering emails
- Spend time in nature: forest bathing, collecting sea glass on the beach, or even packing a picnic to have in a park
- Join a yoga or meditation class (both are great at helping you turn off the thinking part of your brain that never rests)
- Meet a friend at a new restaurant you have been wanting to try
- See a movie in a theater, alone, in the middle of the day
- Try a new Zumba or other type of exercise class to help get your natural feel-good endorphins pumping and maybe even make you smile and laugh
- See your therapist (if you have one)
Self-care has become a buzzword in many parenting, health and wellness circles. As a result, some of us discount it as a synonym for pampering. This perpetuates the guilt many of us feel when we try to take some time for ourselves, to say “no,” or take care of ourselves. Re-framing self-care as a necessary part of being a good parent (working or stay-at-home) can help us to be better parents.
Why is self-care important?
Psychologists tell us that self-care improves our mood and reduces our anxiety. It helps us maintain positive, loving relationships with our children, our families, and our friends. Self care also builds parenting resilience i.e. our ability not start screaming when our four-year old drops their whole bowl of spaghetti in their lap.
Self-care needs to be planned.
Self-care needs to be something you are actively seeking out and something which you consciously enjoy. Try to be aware of how you feel before and after doing something for yourself. Schedule time for yourself. Put it on your calendar. Hiring a babysitter to give yourself a break is good for two reasons. First, it forces you to schedule and plan ahead for self-care. Second it is harder to back out at the last minute.
Practicing self-care may be a new habit. Remember with all new habits, set small goals, practice, practice, practice and don’t get discouraged if you cancel that babysitter or end up folding laundry during the time you had planned to take a bath your first few tries.
Go on, we give you permission to pull out your calendar and start practicing. Contact The Nanny Line to book your babysitter now. Remember, self-care can not be selfish or indulgent because it helps you be an even better mother, partner, friend or coworker than we already are. Invest in your own well-being to ultimately pays dividends to the rest of the people who matter in your life.