Mom life is full of busyness, and if you’re not careful, you’ll end up dropping your own self care (we’ve all been there!).
It’s so important for you to take care of yourself. Otherwise, you’ll go through bursts of adrenaline (where you’re doing, doing, doing) and slumps of withdrawing (where you’re exhausted, needing an escape from your family).
As a human being you need to take care of yourself. You are not a robot, mama. This means you need to rest and recharge.
Not only will this benefit you (which alone is enough to do it in and of itself), but it will have the side effect of benefiting everyone around you, particularly your family.
Mindfulness is one of the best ways to take care of yourself, as it helps you regulate your nervous system out of survival mode and increases the awareness you have with yourself and in your life. The result is that you show up in a way you’re more proud.
9 Ways To Incorporate Mindfulness In Your Routine
There are 7 ways to incorporate mindfulness in your routine that I recommend exploring. Each has its own benefit. Whichever you feel drawn to is where you should start.
Don’t feel obligated to do every one of the seven. Instead, pick one that feels good to you and start with that.
Doing a little bit of mindfulness is better than doing none. So, do what you can with what you have. And that is enough.
1. Find mini-moments to connect with yourself.
Mom life can have you giving at your own expense. This means doing “everything for everyone, always.”
It can leave you managing everyone else’s lives to such an extent that you haven’t had the energy to check in with yourself to manage your life.
What I recommend is to find habits that you’re already doing that you can “tack on” to as a way to connect with yourself.
For example, you probably brush your teeth every morning, without fail. You’re in the habit of this. Tack on something to check in with yourself just after you brush your teeth.
One example is to ask yourself how you’re feeling now and how you want to feel for the rest of the day. This will give you awareness of your body, particularly so you see that you are not your feelings and that you can decide how you want to feel.
Other examples include 1) put your hand on your heart and take deep breaths, 2) go for a short walk, and 3) tell yourself a mantra when you’re driving (such as, “everything is happening in my favor”).
As you build more of mini-moments into your routine, you’ll start practicing self care in a positive way (which means you won’t need to escape your family to get self care, in a negative way).
2. Quiet your inner critic.
However you grew up being talked to, in part, is how you now subconsciously talk to yourself.
For most moms, our inner critic is mean, harsh, and judgmental. She’s not someone we’d want to spend time with.
Your inner critic might say things like:
- “You’re so dumb.”
- “Why would you do that?!”
- “That’s a terrible idea.”
- “You know better so you should be doing better.”
If you have an inner critic like this, know that it is NORMAL. But also know that it doesn’t have to stay this way. You can create what I call your “inner coach” and talk back to your inner critic.
You can reply to your inner critic and say things like:
- “You’re pretty dang smart.”
- “You made a mistake because you’re human, and that’s okay.”
- “Sometimes you have amazing ideas and other times they’re not great—either way, you’re creating ideas and that’s what matters. Way to go.”
- “It takes a long time to change patterns and habits. You’re doing a great job. Just because you know something doesn’t mean you never have to overcome it again. You got this mama.”
3. Practice 10 minutes of silence.
One of the best ways to train your body to feel safe in a calm state (where you don’t have the urge to go-go-go all the time), is to start meditating.
Meditation is often a loaded word for many, particularly if you haven’t done it before.
Meditation is simply the single pointed concentration on one thing. That’s it.
The way I teach it is very simple, with the intent to help you in your daily life as a mom.
Start by sitting in 10 minutes of silence every day, focusing on your breath or white noise. Do it every day around the same time and in the same place, to the extent possible.
You can find the exact steps here on Instagram: How To Practice 10 Minutes Of Silence.
Because meditation has momentum, the more you do this, the more the effects will compound in your life.
4. Plan “me time” in advance.
When you don’t plan any time for yourself, away from your family, what happens is you end up needing an escape from them.
Your need for space, for rejuvenation, for rest ends up coming from a negative place, where you’re running away from your family.
Instead of waiting until you “need it” and it’s a negative thing, plan your self care in advance.
This can be time with a girlfriend, going to the spa, attending your favorite exercise class, participating in a coaching call inside Grow You, or something else.
The most important part is that you plan it in advance, so it’s a positive experience for you and your family.
5. Say “I love you” to yourself every day.
While being a mom often leaves you catering to all your kids’ needs, and often, all at once, it’s easy to disconnect from yourself.
One simple way to connect with yourself (that I do every day) is to look yourself in the eyes in the mirror and say, “I love you.”
You’ll improve your relationship with yourself with this one, small act, as you quite literally see yourself in the moment and give yourself love.
6. Calm your nervous system with three deep breaths.
Whenever you find yourself activated or triggered in the moment, take three deep breaths, with your hand on your heart. This will help you start to regulate your nervous system and get out of survival mode.
This is particularly important if you find yourself yelling, snapping, or overreacting at your spouse or kids. We often think it’s our circumstances that trigger us, but really it has more to do with what’s going on inside our mind and body. (That’s why mindfulness is so important!)
For more on this, including an explanation of fight, flight, freeze, and fawn mode, listen to the podcast: The Nervous System And Feeling Triggered.
7. Take A Mindful Mom Class.
I created a free class that you can take to become a more mindful mom.
This class will help you stop feeling so overwhelmed with mom life, and start living more mindfully, from the inside out. It’s 15 minutes, and you can listen to it on the go.
8. Practices these mantras.
The word mantra means practices for the mind (“man—mind” and “tra—practice”). While in modern society we think of mantras more like affirmations, they can be a powerful way for you to elevate your feeling state (example: go from feeling stressed to calm or from irritated to peaceful).
Here are 7 mantras to help you become more mindful:
- I can cope with this.
- Nothing has gone wrong.
- I am at peace.
- I choose joy.
- I am worthy of my family.
- I am enough.
- This too shall pass.
9. Join a mindfulness community for moms.
To take your mindfulness practice to the next level, join a mindfulness community for moms.
Grow You is my mindfulness community for moms where we take all the work from this blog post to the next level.
A Final Note
Whichever mindfulness practice resonates most with you from the list above is where you should start. Any small step toward taking care of yourself is worth it. You got this, mama.