Parents need self-care as much as anyone else. That said, parents lead busy lives, which can make it tough to implement self-care practices. So, why does self-care matter, and how can you work self-care into your life as a parent?
As tough as it can be to find the time for self-care as a parent, it matters. Here are some reasons why self-care is crucial for parents:
Self-care is something we all deserve. If you’re struggling to make time, feel as though you don’t know how to apply self-care, or find yourself overwhelmed at the thought of adding more self-care habits into your life, there are answers.
Here are some ways to use self-care as a parent:
Some people think of the more lavish things in life when they hear the word self-care, but a lot of it boils down to the fundamental pieces of taking care of yourself. Prioritize having a solid sleep hygiene routine, eating regular meals, and checking in with your mind and body regularly.
Nature is proven to support mental and physical health in a number of ways. It can lower blood pressure, decrease stress, improve concentration, and decrease symptoms of depression and anxiety, to name a few. A nature walk, a hike, gardening, and other outdoor activities are all excellent ways to care for yourself.
Social relationships are vital for physical and mental health. Spend time with friends, family, and others in your life. If you feel lonely, isolated, or are struggling to connect socially, there are solutions. Meetups, support groups, general groups, classes, clubs, and activities are all great ways to get involved in your community and meet new people. You may be able to find groups and activities made specifically for parents, too!
Work “me-time” in when you can. We all need it, and you don’t need to feel guilty about it. Whether this means getting a babysitter, having a spouse, partner, or friend take over for the night, or something else, you deserve it.
If you’re having trouble making time for self-care due to parenting and other obligations, involve your kids. Take them on a nature walk, show them breathing exercises, have a craft day together for mental health purposes, and teach them to identify emotions using a feelings wheel.
“Parenting fails,” stress, nervousness, and so on, all have the potential to impact your mental health as a parent. Whether you’re struggling with family life, trouble finding coping skills and self-care practices that work for you, self-esteem, interpersonal relationships, symptoms of a mental health condition, or something else, seeing a therapist or counselor can help.
Therapy is a safe space for you to talk about what’s on your mind. There are a number of different ways to find a therapist. You can search the web, ask your doctor for a referral to a therapist, contact your insurance provider, or sign up for a reputable online therapy platform like BetterHelp. All of the providers on the BetterHelp platform are licensed with at least three years and 1,000 hours of hands-on experience. Online therapy is real therapy, and it’s an affordable, convenient way to get quality care from the privacy of your own home or anywhere else with a reliable internet connection. Regardless of how you find a provider, you deserve to get the support you need, so don’t hesitate to start the process today.