Having just recently had my second baby, I found myself falling into the same traps I did the first time around.  I’ve been putting my self care on the back burner. Putting off eating, not drinking enough water, feeling guilty for moments to myself… can you relate?
note to self, mama, self care is not selfish
I think that somewhere along the line, we mamas stop taking care of ourselves.  Maybe we still get our hair done or have a standing nail appointment, but our minds are a hot mess.  Some of us seem to have everything together on the outside, but we are surviving on a carefully balanced diet of caffeine and the leftover PB+J on our kid’s plates.  I mean really… when was the last time you went on a date?  Had girls night?  Did something you used to love?  Moved your body? Had positive self-talk? Got dressed?  Liked what you saw in the mirror?
No matter what our journey to motherhood looks like, I think we all need the reminder that self care is not selfish!
Here are seven quick tips that I’ve been working on lately that I hope you find helpful!  Remember, mama, the more filled up you are the better you’ll be able to love your people!
  1. Schedule 5-10 minutes of quiet, alone time in your day and stick with it!  Scrolling Instagram doesn’t count, though.  Sit in silence, meditate, read 2 pages of a book, do a short devotion or read a Bible verse.  (and yes, this can be done while hiding in the bathroom.  No, I don’t know that from experience…)
  1. Take time to find out what brings you life and DO it.  Maybe your interests have changed.  Maybe you’ve forgotten what you even like to do.  Take a hot minute to jot down some ideas about what brings you life.  Then, pick one and do it!
  1. Make health a priority – both physical and mental.  Move your body – whatever that looks like in your day!  Go for a walk, get outside, do a workout, join a gym, take a class – whatever works for you.  Eat well – figure out what works best for your body and make time to prep some food that fuels you. For me – Keto or at least low carb and cutting out dairy is truly self care.  Be mindful of your mental health and don’t discount the power of counseling, or at least a good night out or in with the girls!  
  1.  Determine what your real priorities are and say no to everything else for a season.  No matter how hard we try, we just can’t do it all – at least not well.  Self care is spending some time figuring out what really matters in this season.  Say yes to those things and be okay with saying no to the rest.
  1. Take back alone time/girl time/date night!  Don’t feel guilty about getting out of the house.  And don’t let finances stop you either-we all know babysitting can be expensive, and excellence and  reliability can be hard to find! Swap date nights with another couple – watch their kids this week and they take yours the following.  Ask family to pitch in.  Offer a service or product in exchange for babysitting. I offer jewelry discounts to mine sometimes! Have a standing play date and keep it.  Schedule a day of the week (mine’s every other Thursday) that is kid free for a few hours if you can and be alone, be productive, or be around adults!
  1.  Get dressed.   This self care tip is simple and yet I’m writing this in yoga pants. This is a judgement free zone. BUT, when I take the time to get dressed I feel so much better about myself.  Plus, it’s easier to get out of the house. 
  1.  Have an easy go-to look (hair/makeup/outfit) that makes you feel great.  This goes along with the previous one!  We moms don’t have time to go strolling into our closet – it’s usually a grab and go situation!  Take a little time on the front end to put together some easy go-to outfits and even hairstyles and five minute make up that you feel good in.  That way, even when you’re pressed for time you can look good and feel good!  If you want more tips on this, come join my VIP group where I give lots of tips and tools for simplifying your style.
What are you going to start with, mama?  You’re doing an amazing job caring for everyone around you.  Don’t forget to take care of you, too!
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Anna Seeley is wife to Josh and mom to Logan and Loralei.  She created Graceful Journey with the mission of encouraging women to live into the hope and purpose they were made for through storytelling and tangible tools. She believes every woman has a purpose and a story as unique as they are and that we are all beautifully and wonderfully made. No one is too old or too young or too busy to live life on purpose.  If you were getting coffee together she would remind you that there is hope in every season, something to be learned in every heartbreak, and that there is always - always - grace to be found in the journey.  Join Anna on IG @annajseeley for more encouragement and a peek at her everyday life (aka - coffee, kids and chaos)!


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