I love giving gifts. And although I don't have the budget of an Oprah or even an Ellen, I do have access to a great network of fantastic, caring experts in fields that matter to all of us -- health, fitness, diet and motivation.
That being said, please welcome new Diet-to-Go blogger Mia Redrick. Mia has made it her mission to help harried moms everywhere learn how to take care of themselves.
We first featured Mia a few weeks ago via her blog, 7 Strategies for Balancing Your Life.
Take it away Mia!
New Year's is always the time for resolutions, and it's not uncommon for them to have something to do with exercising or getting fit.
While it certainly is important to keep our body fit, how much thought do you give to your overall well-being? Self-care is an important part of staying fit in our minds because if we never take time to care for ourselves, then we just can't function at a healthy level.
As women, we tend to put our families and jobs first, and WE often get lost in the shuffle. This year, make a New Year's resolution to take better care of yourself.
As soon as you put these self-care resolutions into action, you will find that you are able to take even better care of your family, your job, and whatever else you have in your life.
1. Spend some time each day thinking about or accomplishing something you want to do.
All women should have hobbies that involve something they are interested in. Reading, exercising and other activities are very healthy ways to have your own life apart from your family... even if it is only a few minutes a day.
If you've been wanting to go back to school to get your degree, take the time out to do that and put a little bit of time toward that goal every day. Online classes are making it easier than ever before for moms to finish their education in their own time.
2. Write down your thoughts.
It is easy to feel that complaining to your friends is the only way you can feel better about all of the stress that you have, but that just wastes valuable time that you could be using to have fun.
Instead, write down what you're thinking in a daily journal entry. This should be part of your planned quiet time every single day.
The more you can put your feelings on paper, the less you'll be inclined to lash out at your husband or children for the stress they place on you.
3. Don't lose sight of the things you want to do for yourself.
Constantly reminding yourself of your goals is an important part of being able to accomplish them in spite of everything you have to do for other people in your life.
Use a vision board to place images of what you are aiming for, whether it's your degree or a picture of yourself 30 pounds smaller. Having these images in front of you every day will help push you in the right direction.
4. Take a break.
Every day you should have at least 15 minutes to sit back and relax. Our minds are constantly going, thinking about laundry, work projects, transporting the kids to their activities, and more.
Every woman needs to have some time to slow down and just unwind all of those thoughts from her head. Just drop everything from your thoughts for a few moments and let your brain take a break from it all.
If you have to wake up 15 minutes early or stay up 15 minutes later at night just to accomplish this, then do it. Your brain will definitely appreciate it.
5. Break everything down into smaller bits that are easy to accomplish.
Looking at the whole picture of your day is completely overwhelming. Every mom is familiar with the balancing act that is family life. It seems like a scheduling nightmare just to get it all done.
But the moment you look at things in small pieces, it doesn't seem so bad.
Each night, make yourself a list of the things that must be accomplished the next day. Then break that list down into pieces that just seem to go together. Perhaps the bank and the grocery store are right next to each other, so that can be one small part.
If you need to take your lunch hour to go the pharmacy that's right down the street from your office, then there's another task done. Remember that each item is a small piece of the big puzzle, and tackling lots of pieces is much simpler than trying to sit down and put together the whole thing in one sitting.
Putting yourself last in life works for a short time, but in the long term, it makes for a very cranky and resentful mom. Taking better care of yourself will help you and your family in the long run because you won't feel like everyone in your family gets a break except for you.
A relaxed mom who takes time for herself feels no regrets about her life because she not only takes care of her family well, but also takes time to do the things that are important to her.
Are you ready to resolve to take better care of yourself?
New Diet-to-Go blogger Mia Redrick is author of Time for mom-Me:5 Essential Strategies for A Mother's Self-care and the creator of the national Time for Mom-Me support group. When you start a support group, you have access to a free six-week turn-key program that empowers you to create and grow your own community of mothers who commit together to make self-care a priority. Our mothers agree that when mothers are happier they are better mothers. For more information, go to www.timeformom-me.com