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Self-care means asking what I need right now.

Leanne Page | Nov 3, 2022

When we hear about self-care for moms, we think about bubble baths and weekends at a spa. Those sound lovely but so far out of reach for most of us. So what does self-care even mean? 


The dictionary definition of self care is this: the practice of taking an active role in protecting one's own well-being and happiness, in particular during periods of stress.


So how do we take an active role in protecting our own well-being as busy moms who can’t head off on a kid-free weekend all the time? 


We check in with ourselves. We figure out what we need RIGHT NOW and we find a way to get what we need.


Say to yourself, “Hey self (or insert your first name), what do you need right now?” And don’t give yourself a snarky response like a margarita in the middle of the day or a million dollars.


What do you REALLY need RIGHT now?


Here are some ideas of how to practically answer that question:

  • A pause.
  • A deep breath
  • To say to yourself “This is hard”
  • Physical touch- a hug from a loved one or even give yourself a hug (try a 20 second hug from a loved one. That number is backed by some compassion research that shows the contact/ connection for 20 seconds can actually help calm your nervous system)
  • To ask for help- from your partner, your community
  • Food or water
  • Exercise or movement
  • Stillness or calm
  • To vent
  • A word of encouragement from a friend
  • To sit and be still for a moment
  • To be a lone for just one second


None of these are earth shattering. None of them cost money or a lot of time. They are a few ideas of ways you can meet your own needs in the moment. What can you do for YOU, RIGHT NOW? 


What do you need right now? 


That is self-care. It doesn’t have to be face masks and massages or margaritas on the beach (although I would happily take all of those things, thankyouverymuch). But checking in with yourself- that’s self-care. Recognizing that you may need something right now to help you regain your own balance- that’s self-care. Identifying your own needs- that’s self-care. Finding a simple and quick way to meet those needs- that’s self-care. 


There are lots more ways to help you be present with your kids, connect with your family, and take care of YOU without breaking the bank or asking you to find nonexistent extra minutes in your day. 


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