I was asked this question recently “Why do you talk so much about selfcare? Although it isn’t selfish, don’t you think you can be called selfish as a mother?” I smiled and responded “of course it would be selfish for someone who’s not in tune with self or not a mother & wife whose life revolves around catering to her family.” The Oxford dictionary defines selfcare as “the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health”. So if taking ownership for my own mental, spiritual, emotional and physical well being makes me come across as selfish then I am and here is why.
For the month of July I removed self time (my daily and weekly self activities) from my schedule and replaced it with my children or some work tasks. It was going well until I was feeling very tired, lazy and unmotivated to do anything. Things that I normally woke up and did easily felt like a burden. I was complaining about it but what I realized close to the end of the month was that it was because I wasn’t really catering to my well-being on a daily or weekly basis. So I wasn’t my best self for me or anyone around me. Noticing that, I immediately told my clients that I’ll be taking a 2 weeks break; any work-related emails, calls or messages during the 2 weeks would be greeted with an out-of-office response. I took the 2 weeks to relax and get back in tune with myself after overworking, both mentally and physically.
So if there is a Moms Club with the mantra “Put your mask on first before helping others”, please sign me up because after the month of July I truly believe in this statement. Not so that I can be my best self for others but because I am deserving of the same care and love I nurture others with. I am worthy of self-love. Taking care of myself is not only so I can take care of my family and work, it’s not only about setting good examples to my children but showing my family and others my worth! My selfcare is about me and yours should be as well.
My self care activities help to balance my life. It is that which keeps me sane and in tune with my individual self. Because these activities aren’t just pampering myself but they are my daily 30 – 60 mins to myself to do something I love or something that makes me feel good. For example: Devotion, a cup of uninterrupted coffee listening to the birds in the fruit trees, volunteering, journaling or working out. It is what reminds me that my identity and being span beyond motherhood.
So Mama, let go of any guilt, find support and make healthy choices for ‘self’ today.