Having been a yoga teacher for almost seven years now, I’m a huge proponent of learning yourself. Listening to your body. Breathing deeply. Drinking life in. Nurturing the one body and mind and soul you’ve been given.

But I’ll be the first to admit that all too often I get sucked into the vortex of a busy life. Before I know it, I’m flying from thing to thing 100 miles per hour and causing myself anxiety.

When I find a rare quiet moment to reflect, it doesn’t take me long to remember that I need to step back and make time to take care of myself. Any burnt out mommies in the house?!

For your sake (and mine), I’ve compiled a list for you!

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{And by dime…I mean for the cost of a beloved babysitter, which unfortunately isn’t a dime in 2016. But if hiring a sitter isn’t an option? Pawn those sweet little love bugs off on your neighbor, grandma, or those dear sweet girlfriends who you know will let you return the favor. } Lots of these are COMPLETELY FREE and can be done from home.

11. Take a nap. Long? Short? However you prefer. Just do it.

10. Have fun with PinterestDesign your dream home. Dream birthday party. Dream bedroom. Dream wardrobe. Vacation bucket list. Make a Pinterest board around your favorite novel! Don’t even for one second worry your pretty little head about the fact that your board isn’t realistic. That’s part of the fun of dreaming.


9. Read a fiction book. Fiction books have a way of pulling you into a story and illuminating your imagination. Netflix and Hollywood have tried to hijack our imaginations but we won’t stop reading! I’ve heard it said that reading fiction is like like a massage for your brain. Okay I just made that up, but doesn’t it sound about right? Give yourself a brain massage. For some good reads, check out www.goodreads.com.

8. Take a hot bubble bath. Combine with #9 for a wonderful combination. Candles. Scented bath salts. Music. BONUS: Lotion the heck out of your skin after your bath for some winter TLC.

7. Paint your nails. Pull out that polish sitting in the back of your closet! Paint those piggies. Paint those fingernails. Venture out and try a color you haven’t used in awhile! Give yourself a little mani at home. (I love this post from Glamour.com about 10 steps to the perfect at-home manicure.)

6. Go on a coffee date with yourself. Fly the coop and go sit in your favorite coffee shop. My favorite local spot to sit and spoil myself is Milltown Coffee. Journal, think, read, or simply sip in peace. Bonus: put on your most hipster outfit (think skinny jeans, big bun on top of your head, chunky jewelry, and sandals). Extra credit: Throw on some specs to look philosophical, smart, and like you’re totally in your element.

5. Go on a long walk. Introverts: go alone. Extroverts: invite your BFF.

4. Go to a yoga class. Of course I would say this. But seriously, let go of all of your previous excuses why “yoga isn’t for you” and try it. You might like it! Even if you hate it, at least you had an hour to yourself. I’ve had people in my classes say that yoga is like a full body massage for a fraction of the cost. There are free yoga vids on youtube, too. Here are a couple of my best recommendations for beginners:

20 minute Morning Holy Yoga: Transforming restlessness into productive energy 

5 Minute Yoga for Beginners by Rodney Yee

3. Sit and enjoy some magazines or books at the local library or Barnes ‘n’ Noble.  You guys we have some AMAZING libraries here in the QCA! Go explore them.

2. Mail notes of gratefulness to your closest friends. This can be so so good for your heart and soul.

1. Watch your favorite chick flick on the couch in your comfy clothes while you eat pizza and drink pop. (Feel free to exchange for your favorite guilty food/drink. As someone who tries to be healthy, I normally try to stay away from pizza and pop. But it’s a special occasion. You’re pampering yourself!)

Mama bears, how amazing does it feel to take care of yourself? What else would you add to the list?

Olivia is a girl who loves Jesus, is head over heels about her hubby and is beyond thankful for her three miracle babies. Olivia also has lots of children in heaven as a result of recurrent miscarriages. She is passionate about bearing and sharing hope with those walking through the darkness of infertility and miscarriage, and is working on a book entitled "Bearing Hope: Navigating the Darkness of Waiting for a Child." She still can't believe how awesomely God brought Coleton into her family through adoption, and how He blessed them with Annabelle thirteen months later. Baby Calvin was born a couple years later. She teaches yoga, writes, and runs to keep her stress levels under control. On any given day, you might find her singing worship songs in the kitchen, sniffing essential oils, or curled up in the corner crying because mommying is hard. She relies on good friends, holy yoga and yummy food to keep her sane. Read more of her stuff at Liv Ryan.


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