Mommying is hard business. And it is really easy to get burned out along the way! It’s important to take time, in a very conscious way, for mommy self-care and rest. But beyond taking the time to recharge, it’s really important to make sure you are learning how to nourish a Mommy’s mind, body, AND soul! Without nurturing all three of these things, you may still find yourself stressed and off-balance.
As a mom, it is hard to take the time to take care of yourself. It can feel like you are being selfish. But, if you learn nothing else from me, learn this:
SELF-CARE IS NOT SELFISH.
Let’s say that one more time. Self-care is not selfish. In fact, it’s essential to your well-being!
Self-care is never selfish. Taking care of yourself means you are then available and able to take the best care of your family possible, and that’s your true goal, right?
How to Nourish a Mommy’s Mind, Body, and Soul
Making sure you are nurturing your mind, body, AND soul all at the same time can be tricky business. It’s important for our overall well-being that we take the time to truly take care of ourselves as mamas. That’s why it’s super important to make sure you are paying attention to all the little details and signals your body sends! I’ve compiled suggestions on how to work some self-care into your daily routines and I’ve added suggestions for each the mind, body, and soul self-care! I’ve even added a free set of journal prompts if you need a little help getting your feelings out!
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Your mind is a busy place, and it’s important to give it a rest every now and then. When we get super stressed our brains do too.
First and foremost, your mental health is as important as your physical health for your overall wellness as a mom. Being a mom is tough and it can really take its toll. If you aren’t taking care of your mental health as a part of your daily life, you are doing yourself a disservice. There is a sort of stigma that taking care of your mental health makes you look weak. I completely disagree, and wholeheartedly encourage everyone to speak to a counselor when they are feeling overwhelmed.
For more ideas on combating overwhelm, check out our post on Overcoming Overwhelm: A Mommy’s Guide.
I try to practice mindfulness as often as I can. This just means enjoying the moment you are in. And stop planning and preparing for the other moments that are coming. Just take some time to enjoy and appreciate the moment you are in. Often the little joyful things can be missed if we don’t stop and enjoy the present. And mindfulness practice isn’t something that will come to you immediately. It’s definitely a skill that you practice over and over again, and it will come more and more naturally to you the more you practice it. You can find additional tips for practicing mindfulness here.
The benefits of keeping a journal are enormous, in my opinion. Journaling can be a huge help in clearing your mind. Sometimes it’s just helpful to write and get all of your thoughts out on paper. A lot of times when you can simply give the worries and stresses a name and a place to live, that can take a huge load off your mind. Traditional journaling is great, or you can always do more of a “mind-map” kind of brain dump that lets you get your thoughts in even better order. Some people prefer keeping a bullet journal, which can unleash a little more creativity while you are journaling.
Try journal writing once per day on a regular basis as a way to quiet your mind and center yourself. I’ve included a free list of journaling prompts that include mindfulness writing prompts, gratitude journal prompts, and open-ended journal prompts if you need help getting started. Sometimes, I’m off to the races with a specific topic, that’s on my mind and it’s no problem, and other times I need a little help getting started with my journal. I find daily journaling habits to be profoundly helpful to my mindfulness routine and I find that mindfulness journal prompts can help me get started when I am stuck on what to write about. Expressive writing can help me get my thoughts in order to be able to better express myself.
Recommended Journaling Tools:
- Present, Not Perfect for Moms: A Journal for Slowing Down, Being Mindful, and Trusting in Yourself
- Ultimate All-in-One Journaling Kit
- Siixu Colorful Blank Notebook, Unruled Personal Diary Journals
- PAPERAGE Lined Journal Notebook
Beyond the benefits of journaling, a lot of people find that creative outlets can also be a very powerful tool to nourish your mind! Find some creative outlets that you like to do! Lots of people do some kind of crafting or creating to help soothe themselves and their stress. I love to paint when I’m stressed. I’m not fabulous at it, but that’s why the universe gave us Paint by Number kits! Do you like to do home improvement projects? Get some furniture to refurnish and sand! Is cooking your way to soothe yourself? Make some treats for your friends and family! Whatever your creative outlet is, use it to your advantage.
Fun Creative Outlet Recommendations:
- CRAFTBARN – 2 Framed DIY Paint by Numbers
- Opalberry Paint by Numbers for Adults
- 63 Piece Crochet Kit with Yarn
- 4 Pack 5D DIY Diamond Painting Kits
- ChaCha&Chicky Macrame Kit
It’s amazingly helpful to take planned technology breaks through your days as well. All the looking at screens is bad for your eyes and can be stressful. Have regular times when you plan on putting your computers and phones away each day. And try to give yourself an hour before bed with no computer or iPhone to help you go to sleep more easily.
Personal Growth and Learning
Make sure you set aside some time for personal development and learning. It’s important to keep constantly working and improving yourself. This can be as simple as learning a new hobby! I love to read self-help and self-development books! I find them helpful and always good reading. Is there a new skill you want to brush up on?
It’s important to be able to set boundaries. Both with work and your personal life. Regarding work, know when it’s your working time and stick to it. When you are done with work, and it’s time to be done and home with your family, then be done and spend that time with your family.
Also, if your plate is full, then know it’s ok to say no to anything extra. And “No.” is a complete sentence. No one needs an explanation further than that!
Taking care of your body is also a super important part of self-care! It’s important to listen to your body’s queues and take good care! There are a lot of very reliable ways that you can care for your body every single day.
Eating well is definitely a big part of self-care. And I don’t mean all healthy, all the time. But I do mean a good balance of healthy and nutritious meals along with some fun treats and decadence along the way. When you fuel yourself with better food, you feel a ton better, too. If you eat crap, you tend to feel like crap. And as an additional bonus, a diet that is rich in vitamins and protein will help boost your immune system, too!
Drinking plenty of water can help so many things! It makes your skin look amazing. Drinking all your water keeps you fuller for longer! It helps lubricate all your joints. It’s super important! It also makes your skin look amazing! And it keeps your body flushing out all the toxins and things that don’t need to be in there!
It’s important for your body to do some daily stretching. Find a video on YouTube and do it each day. There are tons of little 5 or 10-minute stretch routines. It helps you release a little stress and it’s really good for your body to stay flexible and loose.
I love this 5-minute Stretch Video. (You definitely don’t have to be over 50 to do it — it’s a great stretching video for everyone!)
Yoga is a fantastic way to stretch and relax and work your muscles all at the same time. I find it incredibly relaxing but also a pretty good workout all at the same time. There are tons of videos online if you don’t want to go to a Yoga studio to participate in a class! And they are fantastic! Try this one for beginners from Yoga with Adrienne!
Some people really love to add meditation into their daily routines. I think you can probably combine that with some excellent breathing exercises as well, and really up your game for your body and mind! Meditation practice can be a great addition to your days if you are really feeling stressed.
When it comes down to it, you have to get your heart rate up and move your body for some good cardiovascular exercise. It is recommended that you get at least 150 minutes of cardio exercise each week. It’s totally fine if you want to exercise every day, just don’t intensely exercise 7 days a week.
Cardio exercise helps you improve your heart and lung function, strengthen your muscles, improve blood flow, boost your mood, improve your sleep, and lower your risk of heart disease. And while I love all of the health benefits, and they are super important, I truly love the mood-boosting endorphins the most! That’s truly amazing!
Fresh Air & Sunshine
Never underestimate the value of getting some fresh air and sunshine in your day. Vitamin D comes from the sun and we all need it. And getting some fresh air is like hitting a reset button for a lot of people. It just gives you a break and lets your body and mind take a pause too.
Sugar is delicious. But it’s terrible for you. No judgment here – I’m the world’s biggest sugar addict. But, I do feel awful after I eat it and the sugar crash that ensues is just not worth it. So watch your sugar and try to limit adding additional sugars into your diet when and where possible.
Take good care of your skin while we are at it! It’s really nice to have a good skincare routine. It helps your skin stay younger-looking and as a bonus, you won’t have dry and uncomfortable skin either! Get in the habit of washing your face at night and in the morning. And for goodness sake use sunscreen every day! Especially on your face and hands!
Your body needs between 7-9 hours of sleep every night. I know, as moms, sometimes that is truly out of reach. But as often as you can, try to get a good night’s sleep for a good stretch of time. And if you have little ones that get up in the middle of the night, that won’t last forever. Just remind yourself of that when you are in the trenches of it! Because when you are there it feels like it might last forever!
Deep breathing (or sometimes called mindful breathing) is super important for your overall body health too. Deep breathing is as simple as just taking some deep breaths, in and out, and really calming and centering yourself. Mindful breathing calms your mind and lets you just focus on your breathing and nothing else. When I am really feeling stressed during the day, I like to set my timer on my phone for 3-5 minutes and sit and just breathe and just be in the present moment. Sometimes it’s the only way I can get my mind and thoughts to slow down and get back under control, especially if it’s a crazy wacky day. This little trick might seem silly and simple, but it works every time to help calm my mind and shed a little stress. Try it out!
We’ve nourished the mind and the body. Now it’s time to move on to nourishing your soul! Self-care truly has 3 parts, and if you aren’t covering the nourishing the soul part of self-care, then you are missing such an important piece.
The best way to describe this piece of the self-care puzzle is – this is where you find your joy. It’s all about how to bring joy into your days and how to spark joy for others as well.
Bringing joy to your days happens in all kinds of ways, and truly, it’s different for everyone. What brings you joy may not be joyful to me at all. And vice versa! So, it’s your job to figure out what brings you a lot of joy, and then work out how to have as much of that in your life as you can!
Is it reading a good book for 30 minutes? Watching your favorite show? A favorite treat or glass of wine? Going for a walk? My number one joy time that I go to again and again is watching a Hallmark movie!
For lots of people, having a dedicated morning routine can be an important part of their joy. They have their tea or coffee in the quiet and spend a little time doing things that bring them joy. For example, they might journal, read, craft, watch TV or just sit and enjoy the quiet. For more ideas on creating a morning routine, check out “How to Save Your Sanity With An Early Morning Routine.”
Reading can be such a fun and relaxing activity. Whether you are reading for fun or have a more serious book at hand, it’s still nice to sit down and read. And it’s a great thing to let your kids see you sit down and be engrossed in a book. It shows them reading is fun and interesting and a great way to entertain themselves.
Some people get a lot of joy from connecting with others. You can make plans to see people, chat on video chat or Facetime, or even just text back and forth with your best friend. Technology is a wonderful thing to connect people and there are so many ways you can stay connected with loved ones and friends now! I always feel uplifted and happy when I get to speak to a friend for a while on a video chat or in person!
It sounds like a lot of work, but trust me, it’s good for the mind and the soul. No one likes a cluttered space, and it makes it harder to relax in your space as well. Or be creative. Or enjoy your space. So if your place is a mess or there is clutter everywhere, it will reflect back on how your mind is working too. And in how you feel. So take some time and declutter and organize and see how much that can lift your spirits!
Work in time to relax. Sometimes you just need to be able to sit and do nothing and just relax. You might want to watch some TV. Or just enjoy the silence. Or read. This is you and your style of relaxing, so you do whatever you need to do!
I always like to add this part whenever I’m writing about mind, body, and soul. Always remember that comparison is the thief of joy. Don’t compare where you are to someone else. You have no idea what is going on in that person’s life. Sure, they put a great picture up on social media and it might make you feel jealous. But trust me, they are showing the world their highlight reel – not an actual glimpse into their everyday life. So, just remember, the grass is greener where you water it. So take care of yourself and your family and do not worry about how anyone else and their families are doing at all!
Make sure you take adequate time for self-reflection when you are taking care of yourself too. Is there something you don’t like about yourself or your life that you’d like to change? What’s the best part of you? What’s the worst part? What can you change and what are you willing to change? Are there new things and activities you want to try? Do you have new ideas you want to experiment with? What does your future self want to accomplish?
This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase something from those links, I may make a small commission. See our full Disclosure and Disclaimer Policy here.
Here’s some excellent reading to help you on your Mommy Self-Care Journey:
- The Extremely Busy Woman’s Guide to Self-Care: Do Less, Achieve More, and Live the Life You Want
- Breathe, Mama, Breathe: 5-Minute Mindfulness for Busy Moms
- Mom Brain: Proven Strategies to Fight the Anxiety, Guilt, and Overwhelming Emotions of Motherhood―and Relax into Your New Self
- More Than a Mom: How Prioritizing Your Wellness Helps You (and Your Family) Thrive
Wrap Up – How to Nourish a Mommy’s Mind, Body, and Soul
In conclusion, it’s super important to take care of yourself as a mom! Being busy and stressed is not a badge of honor, and it might be my biggest pet peeve when people act like it is the way it’s supposed to be. There are a lot of bases that you need to cover with your self-care, and one of the biggest challenges is that you make sure you are covering them all! Make sure when you are taking care of yourself that you are taking care of not only your body but your mind and soul as well. Truly, at the end of the day, it’s your responsibility to take good care of yourself. For yourself AND to be a good example for your family as well. It’s ok to do what best works for you and your schedule and your circumstances. But, make sure you actually DO IT. Take care of yourself so that you can be the best mommy you can be for your family! Let’s take care of ourselves, Mamas! And, as always, Just Keep Shuffling!
- How to Keep Your Monday Motivation All Week Long
- Save Your Sanity With An Early Morning Routine
- Daily Self-Care Routine Checklist
- Overcoming Overwhelm: A Mommy’s Guide