As a modern mum, you are likely to look after multiple children, a home, a job, and a hundred and one other responsibilities. It all adds up to an increasingly busy life, with little time to relax.
The trouble is, if you can’t take time out, it can have a severe impact on your life. Stress will, inevitably, follow. And, it also means you will struggle to give your young kids the quality of care you always wanted for them.
If this sounds familiar, read on. I’ve put together a guide for all you busy mums out there who need a little more relaxation in your life. Let’s get started right away!
Put aside time
The first step to getting enough relaxation is to actively make time for it! It’s that simple. I know that making time for yourself isn’t easy on a daily basis. And, that you might even feel a little guilty about taking time out. However, even if you just allow for half an hour a day, it can help you reduce your stress levels, freshen up, and make you feel – almost – human again. Your best bet is to find a particular time of day, and add it to your routine. It might be when the kids go to bed in the evening, or maybe when they have their lunchtime nap. Also, make sure you do something for you during these free periods. No working, tidying up or preparing any meals. It’s not a long time – so make full use of it by doing something that only benefits you.
I know accepting help from anyone can be tough for mums. For some reason, we all feel like a bit of a failure if we hand over our children to someone else’s care – even if it’s only for an hour or so. But, if you get an offer of help, grab hold of it with both hands. It’s ideal for your child’s socialisation skills and gets them used to being with other adults. So, there’s no need to feel guilty in any way, shape, or form. Plus, people have been helping mothers for tens of thousands of years – there is evidence this practice went on in the stone age. Of course, I’m not saying you should use all the time it frees on yourself. There will be plenty of jobs that need doing, too. But, even if it’s only half an hour to sit down and have a nap, it will do you a lot of good – and it won’t harm your child in the slightest.
Learn to breathe properly
OK, so what happens if you can’t get a moment spare during the day? You can still relax and reduce your stress levels, even while you are doing your chores or looking after your kids. Try using some breathing techniques to make sure you get enough oxygen in your brain and stimulate your nervous system. It will help you feel much more chilled out, and it can also take the edge of any rising stress levels. When things start to get on top of you, and it feels like there is no way out, it can be asphyxiating. It is nothing that a few long, controlled, and deep breaths won’t improve.
Create a sanctuary
As soon as you have children, you pretty much hand over the keys to your house, too. Nothing is sacred, and nowhere is truly yours – for many more years to come. It doesn’t have to be this way, however. Find a place to call your own and make sure you keep it in a nice condition at all times. The bedroom is an ideal spot, of course. It often becomes a dumping ground when you have kids, but keep it clean and it can be your own personal retreat. If you want to relax, it’s vital to have somewhere you can go to shut out the rest of the world. A little decor here and there can help, as can plenty of flowers and indoor plants.
Upgrade your bed
All busy mums are short on time, of course. So, if you get a chance to relax, it’s important to get as much out of it as possible. So, have a think about upgrading your bed and mattress. The quality of the latter is of particular importance, according to this Tempur mattress guide. If you can’t get enough quality sleep, it’s going to impact your ability to look after your kids, work in your job, and manage your life. And if you get the opportunity to have an hour’s nap during the day, it’s important that you can get off to sleep quickly. The more comfortable and supportive your mattress, the easier it will be.
Of course, relaxation doesn’t just involve catching some shut eye. And in many cases, a good workout can be just as relaxing and stress-reducing. You don’t need long to work up a sweat, either. There are plenty of DVDs out there that only involve 25-30 minute routines. Even a nice stroll in the park or local forest can do the job for you. As long as you schedule some time to put aside for yourself, it’s a lot easier than you think. Once you get started with more exercise, you will start enjoying it and begin to feel the benefits. Plus, it’s great for shifting some of that post-baby weight if you need to lose it.
Use a daily planner
OK, so this isn’t all that fun. But, if you find that you are only just getting by each day, maybe it’s time to start planning things properly. One of the biggest stresses of being a parent is that you feel like you have no order in your life. The simple answer is to have an idea of what you are doing before each day starts. You should also think about planning your meals in advance, too. An hour on a Sunday night can help you save so much time – and money – on your meal prep throughout the week. And, it will guarantee that you get nutritious meals on the table for your kids, every time.
Hope this has helped – let me know your thoughts!