Today’s wives and moms are constantly on the go, and we never seem to have enough hours in our day. Even if you are a woman who works outside the home, you probably also have to take care of the kids and basic household needs, such as buying groceries, cleaning, organzing your home, running errands, etc.
Our role as wives and mothers is vital. In fact, I believe there is no higher calling than this. However, as busy moms, we have to learn to also value and take care of ourselves. Moms take care of everyone, but who takes care of her? It’s important that we schedule time to relax during our busy days.
Your car is filled with gas to make it run. Eventually your car will run out of gas, and your car won’t move unless the car is replenished with fuel. Dear friend, the same goes for you! “Mom time” refuels your emotional, physical and spiritual tanks so that you can give to your family as well as yourself. We can’t pour out to others if we are running on empty ourselves!
Tonight I sat down on the couch after first writing an article, recording a podcast, sending my weekly ezine, loading the dishwasher, putting in a load of laundry, cooking dinner, picking up a few groceries, sweeping the kitchen, emptying the trash, and ironing my husband’s uniform. Now normally, I don’t do ALL of those things in one day, but today was just one of those busy, hectic days!
It’s okay to sit for fifteen minutes doing nothing! In the spring sitting on your back deck, watching the birds, or relaxing in a hammock under a tree is the perfect getaway from the pressures of the day. Reading a book for 30 minutes can also seem heavenly to moms.
Here are a few tips to help you fit in much needed “mom” relaxation time:
1. Get up a little early if you have to or stay up later at night. When you have kids, the day usually begins at such a hurried pace. Once you hit the ground running, there’s no stopping you. Before you know it, another day has gone by, with things still left on your to-do list!
Waking 15 minutes to an hour ahead of time means quiet solitude to drink your coffee (with LOTS of chocolate caramel creamer, of course!), read your Bible and pray, plan your day, or go on your morning walk. Staying up a little later at night will give you that quiet bliss that you so desperately need to refill and have quiet time with God.
2. Turn the ordinary into a self-pampering experience. When you take a bath, add candles, lavender or myrrh oil, bubble bath, and quiet music. Your regular bath has now become a spa level experience! Watch a chic flic, with your honey or enjoy it alone! Turn out the lights, pop a bag of microwave popcorn or enjoy some chocolate, and curl up on the couch with a soft blanket and fluffy pillows. Or get in the car, go to Sonic and order a large coke (or bring your water bottle!), turn up the radio or your cd’s, and just drive around! You will come home a different woman, totally relaxed!
3. Ask your husband on a date. Your children need daily nurturing, but time spent with your man is important, too. Let the kids hang out with dad while you go shopping for a new outfit, get an hour-long massage, get your hair highlighted, or go for a pedicure. Since the time is yours to treat yourself, do whatever you like.
4. Use the Boy Scout motto: Always be prepared. That way, you’ll be able to relax more because you have a plan. Double recipes when you cook to have a ready-made freezer meal on hand, when you’ve had a long day and don’t feel like cooking. Iron your husband’s work uniform or make his lunch the night before. Stock up on staples like milk, bread, eggs, butter, chicken stock, flour, sugar, salt, pepper, toilet paper, napkins, paper towels, shampoo and conditioner, soap, toothpaste. That way you won’t quickly run out of what you need, and have to go to town again. The fewer things you have to do throughout the day, the calmer you will be with your family and not experience burnout.
5. Exercise. Let’s face it. When you get a few minutes to yourself, the last thing you want to do is exercise, but it really will make you feel better and ultimately will give you more energy! Exercise helps you to think clearly and stretches the muscles. Your stress will melt away as powerful endorphins are released into your system. Walk 3-4 times a week, do jumping jacks, stretch out your spine on an exercise mat, do leg lifts and stomach crunches, take the stairs instead of the elevator, use dumbbells to strengthen your arms. Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy soul and spirit! You need this body to accomplish God’s work in the earth!
6. Laugh a lot. You will feel happier, and so will your family! Rent funny movies, keep a funny calendar on your desk, or subscribe to a daily joke site. Laughing releases stress. It’s also like inner jogging and keeps your abs tight.
Moms, take care of yourself. Your family would miss you if you were not around to love and care for them. You owe it to yourself to get away to destress and relax. You deserve that break from the daily stress, and God wants you at peace and happy. Jesus died for you because He views you as very precious in His sight. You’re so worth it!