The Importance of “Me Time”:
****Disclaimer: This post is something that I am currently working on and by no means do I “have it all figured out”.
I used to really love this quote. If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. Well, sometimes yes, I guess. There may be some truth to that. HOWEVER, I don’t think it is my children’s job or my husband’s to make sure my feelings are in check! I am responsible for this. AND I don’t want to create an environment in my home where my family has to tip-toe around me. As a mom, I GET to help create an atmosphere of love, joy, praise, and peace in our home. I can set the tone for the day. Now that being said, I have had to learn how to make sure I don’t create the opposite of what I am wanting. One way I do that is by having “Me Time”.
For a long time, I would wait until everything hit the fan before I even thought about taking time for myself. Stephen, my husband, would say to me, “Maybe you should go for a run”. It would take him pushing me out the door and saying, “We will be fine, BYE!” to go and do anything. If I’m being honest, I used to think he was so selfish because he wanted to go and do something he enjoyed (I’m sorry babe). I don’t know if you have ever struggled with this but I was believing the lie that if I asked for a break or needed time to have a complete thought, that I wasn’t being a “good enough mom”. I knew in my head I needed to care for myself, but I couldn’t figure out how to do it.
At the beginning of this year, I had a moment when I finally saw the light and understood that I HAD to take care of me so I could be a better mom, wife, friend, and person. After that, I knew I had to make a change. I am an action plan type of person. Once I see a problem, I want to fix it! I don’t like to sit on the sidelines after I know what needs to be done. I started implementing “Mommy Mondays”. I decided I had to set aside time for me to just be. I had to schedule it like anything else or it wasn’t going to happen (Anyone else?) I picked Mondays well, because of the alliteration. BUT I don’t always do things on Mondays. Depending on our schedule that week, it may be on a different day but I make sure to pick something for me. Sometimes I sit and read in our bedroom, I write, go walk around target, run, or do nothing! That’s right, sometimes I just SIT and watch TV and I don’t worry about the full sink of dishes and the dirty clothes on the floor (WHAT?!?). I had to start choosing. What is most important? My well-being OR how clean the house is when NO ONE is going to see it anyway!
Where to start:
- First, stop believing the lie that you are being selfish or a bad mom. You have to take care of you before you can care for anyone else well. It might be possible to go through the motions, but that’s all that it would be and at some point, it will catch up to you.
- Decide to take the time to do you! And do it! Create an “Action Plan” that works for you. Tell a trusted friend and ask them to check up on you.
- Do something you love! It is A LOT easier to go do something I WANT to do. Here are some of the things I love: Running, reading, listening to music, go shopping, getting together with girlfriends and having FUN! Sometimes I leave the house and sometimes I don’t.
Just because it is “Me Time” that doesn’t always mean I am always Kid-Free. My husband is a coach (Football, Basketball, and Track). For those of you who don’t know, that means from the end of July to the end of April. There is A LOT of time where he is gone or home late and I can’t always wait to go and do what I wanting/needing. BUT that isn’t an excuse for me. Here are some ideas WITH kids:
- Dance Party! Almost daily we have a Jesus Dance Party! We worship together and getting that time with the Lord is first, A-Mazing, and second, I LOVE sharing that times with my kids.
- Let them play without you-I will set the timer (usually 10 minutes) and tell the boys, “For 10 minutes, Mommy is working.” I might be writing a blog post, listening to a podcast, praying, or checking up on my Instagram(Let’s be honest right!?) But sometimes, I just need to breathe.
- NAPTIME- if your kids still nap, Praise Jesus! Mine of both do still. Before, I would spend the ENTIRE naptime CLEANING! Now, I plan it out. Some days, I clean or work on a household task. Other days, I do what I want! Especially on nights that Stephen is coaching late.
- Workout-Yes, it is possible and most days my only option(I have a post coming on this!).
If this resonates with you at all, I want to encourage you to sit down, in a quiet place(And all the Moms Laughed…But really) and just evaluate things. Are you needing time to care for you? We get so busy in the world we live. I think as moms, we are always trying to give more of ourselves to our kids, families, community, and everything around us. This isn’t bad. It is amazing that we are wired to care for people and things the way we do…BUT when any one thing takes all of us, it can be draining. It can literally suck the life right out of you. To be able to give what we want to give, to the people we love, we have to take the time to refuel ourselves. Your car is going nowhere fast without any gas in it. Finally, please know if you are not a mom, you still need time for you and the time to recharge and regroup.
I hope this encourages you to care for you because YOU, lovely one, are worth it!