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I recently read a study that shared some interesting data about mothers and the time they get for themselves. Basically, it stated the average mom gets a total of 17 minutes of “me” time in a week. Between taking care of kids, working at home or away and getting housework done they get less than 30 minutes of uninterrupted time to enjoy for themselves in a week. I’m not shocked by this but to actually see a number like “17 minutes” was powerful.
So in the midst of the responsibilities we carry, every day, all day, we need to figure out how to take care of ourselves especially during that time of the month. I’m serious ladies many times we find ourselves much more vulnerable and emotional during PMS as our hormones are doing what they do best during that time of the month.
When we neglect this part of us we are ultimately neglecting our family. If this concept is foreign to you and it seems selfish to put yourself first think about it in terms of taking care of myself, is taking care of my family. You know that saying, “When mom is happy everyone is happy.” Well it’s true. You set the tone in your family. If you’re grumpy and mad all the time because you’re exhausted and overworked your kids pick up on this. Your family does and they either mimic you and/or walk around on egg shells.
I come from a long line of hard working Latina women and I feel honored to have had that modeled to me and now I share this value with my children. Though my mom didn’t work outside the home, I don’t recall a day when she wasn’t working. She was always busy with something. With this strength comes the realization that it can also act as our weakness. I’ve have seen that in my own life, with my doer personality. Many a time has it left be feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, frustrated and leaving little time for myself.
The decisions you make determine the schedule you keep. The schedule you keep determines the life you live. And how you live your life determines how you spend your soul” ~L. TerKeurest
Making Time for Mom
Mommas I encourage you to make time for yourself regularly but especially around that time of the month. Make some room for you to discover who you are outside of your responsibility of mom, wife, employee, business owner… The endless demands are constantly beckoning for us at our door in and outside of our home so here are ways I make time for me.
- Ask yourself–Are you doing too much? Are you running around frazzled and stressed? While everyone else is sitting around waiting on you to make them a snack. Waiting on you to get them clean laundry. Waiting on you to bring them a drink. Waiting on you to… I encourage you to ask for help. Delegate some of the responsibility. My husband does the dishes and I cook. Is this absolutely necessary in my routine? No, but some days it’s absolutely wonderful not to have to worry about the dishes. Ask your kids to help around the house. I have a 12 yr old and a 9 yr old. They help keep our house in order and I remind them that we are a team and in order to make this house run smoothly I need their help because I can’t do it all. They need to know that even though I act like I can do it all, I really can’t.
- Schedule it! I’ve decided that in order for me to actually make time for me I must schedule it in and I don’t feel guilty for doing so. Time for you may look different than your girlfriend so don’t feel guilty that your friends “me time” is redoing her living room and for you it’s taking a nap.
- Fight for it! Yes, some weeks you will have to say “no” to sending homemade cupcakes to your son’s class, you’ll have to say no to laundry and save it for another day, you’ll have to say no to the request for volunteering at your local shelter, the request for…, so you can say “yes” to yourself. You may feel guilty for saying no but at the end of the day you’ll be glad you didn’t add another thing to your already full plate. Use your judgement and wisdom as you learn to say no to request being made. Figure out the things you’re being ask to do only because they know you won’t say no and what are the things that only you can fulfill.
Sometimes me time will look different
“You take what you get and you don’t throw a fit.” This is a saying I first heard of when I met my husband. Apparently, his Uncle Teri was known for this and other types of similar types of sayings. Sometimes “me time” will look different! It may not look like 2 long hours of uninterrupted time and that’s okay, take what you can get. There are days when I get 15 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes in the afternoon and 20 minutes at night, I gladly take it.
What I have been doing recently is yoga in the morning. My ideal way of doing yoga is in the peace and quiet of my room without any interruptions but that rarely happens so it looks more like 20 minutes of constant interruptions. One day I got up early enough to make breakfast and I still had about 20 minutes to squeeze some yoga in before my kids came down. Before I knew it I had kids asking me to get them more milk, kids arguing with each other and one child crying. I just turned off my yoga video and decided to come back to it later but later never came. So I decided to schedule my yoga videos in my day.
I have recently found a way to squeeze in yoga through out my day, the breathing techniques are wonderful and so effective to help me “calm down”. It’s not a myth that women may find themselves more irritable and emotional during PMS. So don’t be surprised if during that time of the month you find me on my living room floor breathing in calm and breathing out frustration, all the while my kids are yelling and screaming in the background.
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Do you have any tips that have helped you? Share in the comments!