When I tell people that I am a middle school teacher, their usual response is “Aww, bless your heart.” Ha! I love what I do and enjoy/embrace the awkwardness that is middle school in all of its glory. (Don’t believe me? Go back and look at your middle school pictures and reminisce.)
I’m a mom who works outside of the home (all moms are workers, am I right?) and my son, Jack will be eight months before I know it. So finding time for myself isn’t always easy.
Self-Care was an emphasis of mine come the new year. I want to be a well-rounded healthy mom, wife, employee, human. I want to wake up in the morning, not with drudgery but feeling whole, ready to go.
So as I pursue self-care myself, here are four things I want to put into place to purse the figuratively rounder me (hopefully the less literal rounder me, haha).
Purposeful Planning and Priorities
This year I resolve to say less “no’s”. Which would mean a more authentic “yes’” to my family and to myself. I want to think about my day in manageable blocks of time. Plan with intention and purpose to allow for time for myself. To think about activities that bring me happiness and joy and pursue those things. So this may look like, waking up just a bit earlier to go for a walk or putting down my phone to set aside work for a bit. Maybe purchasing noise-canceling headphones, so that I can simply close the door and journal for a bit. So I encourage you all to schedule your self-care with intention and purpose.
Studies have shown that we should be reading more. I am not just saying that because I teach Language Arts. Reading does something for us to help us escape or learn/grow. So taking time to read is a great method to relax. Finding relaxing techniques is so important to our self-care, especially if we are bent towards anxiety or worry. Meditation, yoga, visualization, etc. This all allows us to take a moment to block out the noise and center ourselves. Mornings are a great time for this or right before we sleep (especially if you are like me and sleep is a struggle).
Like I said before, saying no is not always easy. However, it is important for us to take a reflective look at our life and set boundaries. We can think about it in terms of a sandbox. While in the sandbox, we have the freedom to play, interact, build, create, work, etc. That is our limit though. We do not stretch ourselves so thin that we are no longer in the sandbox. This may look like saying no to the next PTA meeting to get a manicure/pedicure (and that is okay).
There is a balance to everything. Eating right and working out. Sleeping well and having a morning routine. Quality time versus Effective time. Creating a “budget” of your time helps establish harmony. We need to have harmony in our social, emotional, physical, mental capacities. Looking at our time and taking time to find health in all areas will make for a more harmonious life.