5 Ways to Prioritise Your Health: Balancing Self-Care and Motherhood
Between organising the school run, household responsibilities and demanding workplaces, constantly juggling the various responsibilities of parenthood and work can certainly be overwhelming. Many parents learn to live amongst the chaos rather than prioritise their self-care, as there only so many hours in a day! If neglecting your own needs and health in place of looking after others sounds like you, here are some ways you can calm the storm around you and get you back to feeling like you again…
Build self-care into your daily agenda
Although it’s not realistic to soak in champagne bubble baths every night, ensuring that some level of self-care practice is incorporated into your day-to-day life is essential for any parent. These don’t have to be big, extravagant things (though they certainly can be) but smaller gestures instead. For example, 10 minutes of stretching in the morning after you wake up, listening to your favourite podcast whilst on your daily commute or making sure you follow through with your nightly skincare routine can go a long way in maintaining your happiness. Also, don’t forget the odd treat here and there wouldn’t go amiss either! How about a slice of cake from your favourite café? Or even some new items to add to your summer wardrobe? Don’t think of these occasional acts as indulgences; think of them as necessities.
Adjust your sleeping habits
Bad sleeping habits come in many forms. Although sleep fuels us and readies our engine for the next day, it is common for many mothers and parents to neglect their own sleeping habits. Although this is sometimes impossible (especially with small children or disruptive work hours!), feeling refreshed and energised will, ultimately, allow you to be more productive during the day.
To help achieve this allusive rest, take heed of the bedtime rituals you put in place for your own children each night. Try to go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day, dim the lights, put away your phone and read before your own bedtime. If you are feeling the physical/mental effects of poor sleep, exhaustion, or stress, we recommend you consider a trip to the GP – they will be able to talk through these issues with you as well as look for any underlying causes of why you might be struggling to nod off.
Use your time efficiently
Whether you’re writing down nightly to-do lists for the following day or prefer to accomplish tasks and goals on the fly, managing time looks different for everybody. When it comes to your health, however, you can never be too prepared. If you suffer from a recurrent condition, such as a UTI, e-Surgery online prescription service and pharmacy allows you to quickly and safely order ‘just-in-case’ medicines, like Trimethoprim UTI treatment. Always having a backup available in your medicine cabinet means that you can prioritise your health without the time-consuming GP or pharmacy visits.
Organise a weekly meal plan or batch cook
Weekly meal planning and batch cooking mean you’re not only saving time in the long run but also ensuring that healthy, nutritious foods are long term staples in you and your family’s diet. Although a one-off takeaway isn’t going to hurt (as we have advocated, the occasional treat is necessary!), it’s always best to be prepared.
To start this process, try to utilise a few core recipes, or family favourites, in your first plan. As the weeks go by, you can add in new recipes one by one. Once you have a solid stash of 10 meals that you know (roughly) off by heart, your ‘weekly’ plan might be ready to become a two-weekly plan instead! Batch cooking, though perhaps a time-consuming task at the moment, can save you from the 6 pm ‘what-am-I-meant-to-cook?!’ meltdown (don’t worry, we’ve all been there!).
Cut yourself some slack
It is common knowledge that to be human is to be imperfect. Why stress about those unwashed dishes when you can make peace with them? Why get upset that your meal plan didn’t quite work out one night, and you had to get a pizza instead? At least you didn’t have to do the dishes. Don’t fret because you forgot to do your 10-minute nightly meditation; you had that glass of wine instead, remember? Parenting is tough, so be kind to yourself and recognise that you’re already doing your best if you’re reading this.