So I’m doing it again! I’m on a plane, on my own, heading off to do something just for me, for the 4th time this year! Sound extreme? Perhaps, if you have a young family, it might do and certainly. in the early years of parenthood and especially when I was breastfeeding, this is not something l could have easily done. But in truth, just 18 months ago I wouldn’t have done it either. Why? Because it would have felt extravagant, selfish, not the sort of thing a “good” Mother would do, too expensive, not a priority for our family, unfair on my parents….
The list of excuses for putting myself at the bottom of the pile was endless. But having a serious health scare 3 years ago and then turning 40 at the end of 2017, meant that I was finally ready to start putting myself first – for the first time in errm…..forever. Honestly, even as a kid I put others needs before my own. Crazy right?
So often, when we become Mothers all of out time, energy, brain space and love gets showered on our little ones. They need us and of course, we’re there for them. For many of us we also are expected to keep the household, and everything is ticking along nicely too. In my husband eye, I was “Off” work during Maternity leave and had all the time in the world to do everything. The problem was, that things didn’t really change when I went back to work either.
But what happens as we try and be all the things to all our people ( all the other Mums manage it don’t they?), is that we forget ourselves. We’re trying to do everything, juggle everything and be everything in just 24 hours a day! We become stressed, anxious, sad, anygry at everyone, It can affect the quility of our life and our self-esteem.
It took me 10 years of doing that as a Mother to finally realise that if I put myself first for at least a part of each day, everything else becomes easier. I felt more relaxed, happier and way less resentful. Here are the steps I took to Carving out time for myself that counts.
I dropped what wasn’t important (chores, expectations of others, trying to please people)
I asked for help -I’m not ACTUALLY Superwoman
I worked out what would fill my cup and really make me feel good. (Clue: it wasn’t watching TV or scrolling on my phone)
I told others that I was doing this.
I scheduled it in and got help with the Kids
I damn well did it.
So here I am on my own, on my way to Barcelona for 2 days. Yes, I’m nervous about leaving the kids, but they’re in great hands. Yes, my 5 year old will be super clingy when I return. But I’m teaching her right now, that she needs to put herself first, at least sometimes. That relaxation is important. That she can do the things that she loves, not those that are expected of her and that it will lead to a happier, more balanced life.
If you’re thinking “Are you crazy? I’m a new Mum. Having a weekend away is so far from my reality right now!”. Have a look at my checklist to help you find your own moment of Self-Love and put it into practice.
Download it here.