Taking Care of You

How to Practice Self-Care Without Leaving Your Home

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Do you struggle to find the time and motivation to practice self-care without leaving your home? Learn how to keep your cup filled in the busyness of life.


If you’re like me, you struggle to find the time and motivation to practice self care at home. The idea of self-care is huge right now. You can’t go on any kind of social media without seeing multiple articles on how to take care of yourself. 

*Get more sleep. 

*Eat better foods. 
*Spend a relaxing weekend of pampering.
These are all great ideas.
But, I don’t remember the last time I slept all night without interruption. Or slept past 7am. 
And I try to eat healthy. I’d love to make myself a healthy breakfast smoothie but most days I’m lucky if I can choke down 1/2 a chocolate chip muffin left over from who knows when.
As for that relaxing weekend of pampering, I’d settle for using the bathroom without an audience.

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self care at home

Still, I have learned through experience that I’m a much better mom, happier caregiver, and satisfied wife if I find ways to fill my emotional cup with as little stress as possible on my family. Leaving the house isn’t always a possibility. Sitters have to be arranged. Schedules adjusted. Someone always seems to get sick. And I spend my time away stressing about things at home. So, just how does a wife/mom/caregiver practice self-care?

Blogging

One of the best things I did for myself was start a blog. It provides me a way to express myself while still being able to take care of my family and home. As an added bonus, my family provides me with an abundance of writing material.

Even if you don’t think “people” will read your blog, start one! Sometimes just writing out your experiences brings so much clarity and understanding. You will be able to share your joys and struggles with family and friends and you might help someone who’s going through something similar along the way.
If you are more of a speaker than a writer and the idea of spending hours just typing out your thoughts gives you anxiety, try podcasting or even vlogging. These are both very popular and successful avenues of expression. 

Reading

I don’t have a lot of time to just sit. I used to be able to start a book in the morning and close it in the evening without a single care in the world.   When I do find time to sit I start thinking of the abundance of things I should be doing and end up not enjoying my time or “filling my cup” at all. Enter audiobooks I know they’re not a new thing but I never fully appreciated them until now. I can listen to a book while doing my housekeeping, taking a shower (do you know they have waterproof speakers?!), driving down the road, and falling asleep at night. When I do take time to sit down to read, thanks to Amazon Whisper Sync, I pick up in my ebook where my audiobook left off.

Learn a new skill or hobby

Before becoming a parent and caregiver I had many hobbies. I enjoyed performing in and attending the theatre. Crochet was my go-to for relaxation.  Now, my hobbies have to be family friendly.

Fairy Gardens

One of our newest hobbies are our fairy gardens. They’re cute, almost maintenance free, fun for the kids, and fairly cheap (dollar stores!). We spend our spring and summer adding to them and creating our little villages.

Scrapbooking

I know this sounds like the opposite of family friendly but it has really become a great hobby for all of us. Print out some pictures and put them together on a page with your family’s input. Not only will you enjoy the memories from the pictures but you will also have the memories of creating this treasure.

Photography

What mom doesn’t want to document their child’s life? What family doesn’t want to have those beautiful photo sessions that show how you wish your life really was? Kill two birds with one stone and learn to take those pictures yourself.   Smart phones now have excellent cameras. You can find amazing photo editing online or through apps. And to take photos with you actually in them you can find a tripod for less than $20.

Learn a new skill

Right now, I’m focused on learning all I can about blogging and everything that entails. I’ve taken eCourses on writing, site design, and photography all in an effort to make my blog amazing. 
 
My SIL (mom of 3, teacher, and business owner) is teaching herself Russian! 
 
There are literally thousands of courses online now that are absolutely free. Not only will you find fulfillment but you will advance your skill set. 

Journaling

One of the best things I started doing for me was keeping a journal.
 
  • Journaling reminds me of the joy found in every day.
  • I won’t forget the small stuff like lost teeth and the funny “sayings”.
  • It reminds me of answered prayers.

I don’t like paper clutter, so I found a great app called Day One. I can type in my entry, add photos, and it even keeps the weather and location data for me.  

You might be thinking:
Those are all great ideas. But how am I supposed to do these things when my time is so limited?

Let Go of Your Guilt

For a long time, I started feeling guilty every time someone even mentioned the idea of self-care.
Self-care sounds, well, self-ish. But, what I’ve discovered is that when I don’t take time out for me and do things that I enjoy, I’m not my best for my other roles. 
 
When you’re constantly giving to others without stopping to refresh yourself, you eventually run out of you to give. Spending just a few minutes a day focused on me and what I enjoy gives me the motivation and energy to focus on those around me. 
 

Take Advantage of Your “Fringe” Moments

If you ask me what kind of free time I have to spend on myself, I would laugh in your face. I’m a wife, a mom a caregiver, and a homemaker (just to name a few of my roles). I don’t have time that is “free”. But, I’ve learned to take advantage of the time I do have to refill my cup and take care of me.

  • While doing my chores, I’ll listen to an audio book
  • I gave up most TV (there’s rarely anything good on anyway) to work on my blog after the kids go to bed
  • While supervising the kids’ outside time, I’m working on my gardens.
  • I stay up two hours after everyone goes to bed because I’m a night person. If you’re a morning person, try getting up a little earlier than your family.

Learn to Say “No”

I get that there are a lot of things out there that are worthy and noble things to be doing. Volunteering in your children’s schools, community, and church all sound like great causes. But guess what, your plate is already full and that’s ok!

I’d like to do it all. I’d love to be everything for everyone but I’m only one person. When you don’t have enough time even in the fringe moments to pour into yourself, you need to start asking yourself what you are going to give up. 

Yes, you can always give something up. It’s not going to be easy. You’re going to disappoint people but it must be done for self preservation.

I love to sing with our church choir. Rehearsing, making beautiful music, fellowship with other singers, it’s been a “cup-filler” for me for many years. But recently, it became more of a burden. 

My children need to learn to worship in “big church” and as their mother, I need to teach them. My MIL gets anxious sitting by herself. There’s no suitable childcare for my infant son. It was putting stress on my husband to come home from work once a week and having to fill my roles too while I went to rehearsals. 

So even though I LOVE choir, I had to give it up. I miss it but I know I will return when my situation changes again.

Here’s my biggest piece of advice for finding time for you – do what works for the season of life you are in right now. I still love doing all the things I did before I was a wife, mom, caregiver, and homemaker but some of those are not possible right now. It doesn’t mean I will never do them again, but I have had to find other ways to fill my cup in this season of life for however long it lasts. 

What are some ways you keep your emotional needs cup filled in this season of life? 

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