Why you should take a minute to take care of YOU.
Self-care isn’t selfish, y’all. When misrepresented, self-care can seem pretty self-indulgent. I get it. Over the past few years, the term self-care has been trending as a way to describe a myriad of activities and products from simple to extreme. From a manicure or a muffin to a ten day treat yo’ self spa tour there are a wide range of opportunities to ‘care’ for yourself by spending money or traveling. I want to help you to see that self care can be simple, self care isn’t selfish, and you actually are doing those around you a service by taking care of your self.
The entire year last year regarding my work was….. taxing. (That’s the most polite way to put it.) I was stressed out in 2019, ya’ll. I didn’t really realize how that stress was transferring over to my family until we went on a trip together over the Christmas holiday. We went on a road trip to Branson and spent a lot of time just the four of us in the car. Since Blake and I work together, a few times on the road or in our cabin our conversation would migrate over to business. Cue the dark clouds. The kids would got grouchy. I realized on the trip that my kids have started associating my job that I love so much and plan to continue building for years to come with stress and a bad mood. “When mom talks about work, she always ends up in a bad mood.”
I have to figure out a way to show them that I am, in fact, ok and not about to lose my mind over my job. The only way to do that? Take care of ME. I have to be sure that I am dealing with stress, exercising away anxiety, and allowing myself to unplug sometimes. It’s actually a good thing for everyone.
Momma, your kids want you to be happy and healthy. No, they need you to be happy and healthy. My kids are never more stressed out than when I am stressed out trying to pretend that I’m not. They are intuitive creatures, these kiddos, and even if you change the tone of your voice to overly enthusiastic, even if you are treating them to a movie or a fun activity or a favorite snack, if you’re freaking out, they know it. They feel it and carry it around with them like a little backpack of distress. So, it’s time to figure out how to lay down some of what is keeping you worn out, freaked out, or unhappy. How can you do that?
Be intentional with your self-care. Now, I know nothing brings out snarkiness in the martyr moms faster than the mention of self-care. I need you to understand this, naysayers. When I say self-care, I am not saying self-first. I am not saying take care of yourself only, or to put your own needs ahead of what your family needs from you. Don’t put yourself on a pedestal. You don’t have to miss a kid’s ballgame for a day at the spa in order to practice self-care (but if you need to, do it sister. I might.) I’m only saying that if you don’t take a moment every day to take care of yourself, you won’t be around long enough to care for everyone else. I don’t mean you’re going to kick the bucket- you just won’t be around because no one wants to hang out with a stress-ball.
You deserve a break. You work hard, for everyone else, all day every day. Take a minute to get your nails done or read a book or go to the gym. The world won’t fall apart if you do. In fact, it may be better because you do. Self-care doesn’t have to be about going somewhere or participating in some activity. It can just be sitting still and reflecting. It can take 5 minutes or 5 hours, there really are no rules here. It’s just important that you are paying attention to what serves your spirit so you can continue to serve others.
Self-care in 2020 must be intentional. There are so many things out there that are constantly vying for our attention, if we don’t schedule in little moments to refocus we just won’t do it. One thing I’m starting this year is getting up an hour earlier than usual. This is tough for me because I am not naturally a morning person, but I know that if I am going to make time for myself I’m going to have to literally find time for myself. I think that time may be in the hour before my alarm usually sounds off. My plan is to get up and use this extra hour to establish a new morning routine to include quiet time, reflection, reading, and a gratitude practice I’m working on that I will share with y’all once it’s well established.
Can you try that over the next few weeks with me? Maybe it’s not in the time before the day really kicks off, but can you try and carve out some time to just be yourself, with yourself so that you can present the very best version of yourself to all the people who depend on you? You deserve it just as much as they do.
Mindy Boyd is a wife, momma, and business owner in south Mississippi who is currently trying to find her zen early in the mornings. She also currently has a weekly podcast called The She Confident Podcast and a super fun Facebook community.