Your guaranteed first lesson the second you become a mum is that everyone else comes first, especially this beautiful, innocent and fragile child who is now forever your responsibility. From the moment, you are pregnant, to holding them in your arms, to their first steps, first day at school, first love interest and first full time job, a Mum’s role is never-ending. And we wouldn’t have it any other way, right? Family is always number one priority.
But at what cost?
Now that your kids are less dependent on you, no more nappy’s, bottles and sleepless nights (well maybe if your hormones are still out), it’s time to take care of you, and put your overall needs first. Self-sacrificing for years, takes its toll on your adrenal glands, your pancreas, your sex hormones, your thyroid, your liver having a cascade affect not just on your weight but your hormones, health and quality of life. We’re guessing it’s been a while since you’ve put yourself first, so here are 5 steps on how to embrace this new lifestyle which will allow you to be your best so you can best care for those you love in your life.
Start saying yes – to yourself
It feels good helping your loved ones and saying ‘yes’ when they need you, doesn’t it? Now imagine how good it feels when you start saying ‘yes’ to yourself! It’s liberating! Get into the habit of realising it’s okay to say ‘no’ to things unimportant to you or that you don’t like doing.
It’s not selfish; think of it as making yourself happy and enjoying what you want to do. It doesn’t mean you don’t consider others by any means!
Make time for yourself
Schedule ‘me’ time for yourself in your diary to do something that energises your soul and puts a smile on your face. Exercise, nutritious foods and sleep are the obvious building blocks for good health, but ‘me’ time is another essential. Many of us forget about it when we’re busy with family.
The purpose of ‘me’ time is to replenish energy. It can be as simple as booking in for a massage, a walk on the beach or having a cappuccino at a quaint café with your favourite book. Anything that brings you a sense of happiness counts as ‘me’ time, and it shouldn’t be at the bottom of your to-do list.
Catch up with the girls
Here’s an interesting fact we discovered – having good friends increases longevity even more than having close relationships with adult children*. Social support and good health are connected when it comes to friends, so they’re not only fun to be around, but they help keep your mind and body sharp.
Just as your children came back from parties or activities with smiles on their faces after seeing their friends, you will come back just the same after seeing yours!
Make your health a priority
Starting preventative measures, planning and making healthy choices consistently are key steps to good well-being. In years gone by, life just got in the way, didn’t it? Family obligations always found their way to you, and your own well-being was placed at the bottom of the pile.
Now is the time to walk the dog again (or the cat) , try new activities, (dancing is amazing for your health, nervous system and balancing feminine energy!), and eat right for YOUR body. Go to bed early, have a sick day when you are sick and give your brain some R&R daily. Go and get started!
Remember you are THE most important person in your life!
Your happiness is the most important. You are the most important. If you break, who is going to look after everyone else? Give yourself a break – before you break, you don’t need anyone else telling you it’s okay to put yourself first…it just is. This is more important than anything else now, you need to start living not existing, you need start living, for yourself – no one else.
*The Australian Longitudinal Study of Aging studied almost 1,500 seniors for a full decade, research released in early 2016.