There never seems to be enough hours in the day for a busy mom. In fact, 56 percent of women find it difficult to balance work and home life. Though it’s easy to let self-care come second to family, work and household obligations, putting it off can do more harm than good. The likelihood of illness, chronic stress, exhaustion and burnout increases for those who regularly disregard their physical, mental and emotional well-being. Mothers and women, in general, should consider practicing some of these acts of self-care in everyday life.
- Accept and Ask for Help. As a mother, juggling several tasks at once can become second-nature. Still, the pressure of doing everything can be overwhelming. It’s important for moms to remember that asking for help—and accepting it—does not equal failure or bad parenting. Whether it’s carpooling, running errands or doing the laundry, don’t be afraid to lean on loved ones for support. For spouses and children, delegating can be as easy as creating a “honey-do” list at the start of each day, or a family calendar illustrating busy days when mom might need help getting things done.
- Be Kind to Yourself. Moms tend to deny themselves the credit they deserve. In fact, women in general are known to have lower self-esteem than men. Overcoming a negative mindset can mean practicing daily affirmations, journaling meaningful experiences or simply seeking out opportunities that bring joy and laughter. Acts of gratitude have been linked to greater happiness, improved health and strong relationships. Hobbies are also known to promote self-growth and fulfillment.
- Be Present. Though it can be hard to resist the temptation of screens, studies show there can be deep emotional consequences for children whose parents focus on devices too often. Taking the time to disconnect from technology, at meal time for example, allows for face-to-face interactions without distraction. Better yet, it gives everyone the chance to actively listen to one another and get in some quality family time, which all moms can appreciate.
- Let Go of Guilt. Find time throughout the week to step away from the responsibilities of being a mom, wife or employee to pursue individual interests and goals. That can mean getting an hour of alone time to read a book, hit the gym or visit with friends. According to Forbes, those who prioritize solitude are happier, less stressed and more satisfied with life in general. Chronic stress, on the other hand, can lead to serious health conditions and double the risk of a heart attack.
- Set Achievable Health Goals. It’s crucial for anyone, but especially busy moms, to establish health goals that are specific, measurable and realistic. If hitting the gym for an hour everyday isn’t likely, make time for a thirty-minute walk or family dance party. Small changes throughout the course of a normal day can lead to a happier, healthier mindset. Some other ideas include:
Grace is a wife and a mommy of two amazing children, Kahlea and Tommy. She is a registered dietitian, certified diabetes and certified health coach at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and a featured blogger at A Healthier Michigan. She is a lover of food, Detroit sports, dance, music and everything Justin Timberlake. She graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in dietetics and a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology. (Go Green!) Grace has also earned a Master of Business Administration from Wayne State University. Mrs. Derocha has a number of certifications to help her educate people regarding how to live a healthier lifestyle, including a weight loss management certification and experience as a group fitness instructor. Grace is very passionate about helping the world become a healthier and happier place.