I know when most of us when we think of ways to practice self-care we think massages, facials and holidays away from the kids. Now, that all sounds very time consuming and costly doesn’t it so it’s just not realistic for the average mum. The thing is there self-care is something that is very important and that everyone should be practicing.

Self-care is the process of using various activities that help you to feel better within yourself. Self-care not only helps you feel better emotionally and mentally but it can also help you feel better physically. There are many different ways that you can practice self-care and there are plenty of ways that you can do it without having to spend a lot of money on different items, courses or coaches.

Time & Budget Friendly Ways To Practice Self-Care 

1. Daily walks: It is truly amazing how good a walk can be for your mental health. By incorporating a daily walk into your routine you can start to clear your mind whilst also getting a good amount of exercise. Plus it can be some time alone in peace to clear your thoughts. 

2. Yoga: Yoga and meditation is another great way to practice self-care. It can be done at home in private and during times that it suits you. It can be a fantastic way to start the day if you can get up 20-30 minutes before the kids (implying they are not already early risers) or a good way to unwind after the kids. have gone to bed. 

3. Drink water: This one sounds simple right? But, do you know most of us don’t drink enough water ina day. So, grab yourself a funky drink bottle that you will enjoy drinking out of and set yourself a water goal for the day. Check out the: Oasis Shimmer Stainless Steel Double Wall Insulated Water Bottles

4. Eat a good breakfast: Not finding time for breakfast is probably one of the most common things we hear about in our group (Motherhood Unplugged Community) Starting your day with a healthy and hearty breakfast will help you to feel better throughout the day and keep you full of energy so it really must be a priority. A cup of coffee does not count as breakfast! 

5. Write down 5 things that didn’t suck: This can also be called focusing on gratitude. When things get tough and we get caught up in the mundane of all the jobs we have to do day in day out we can lose focus on the things we are grateful for. At the end of the day, write down 5 things that didn’t go to bad during the day and you are grateful for. It shows you that there are good things that happen during the day even if you may have missed them. 

6. Meal plan: Honestly having to think about what you’re going to cook every single night can really become a chore. Not only is meal planning a great way to eat healthily but it also helps you to be more organised and reduce some stress for the week. Plus I am a huge fan of always cooking too much and freezing extra portions. That way you use all ingredients with no wastage and also some night you won’t have to cook and can use the freezer meals. 

7. Dance it out: Dancing is a great way to reduce stress and be more content in yourself. You can do it along with the kids or by yourself it doesn’t really matter. What’s important is to just have fun and shake out all those frustrations! So, turn the music up and dance around your lounge room. 

8. Focus on your breathing: Meditation and self hypnon=sis can be literally life-changing. It’s not until you actually stop and take the time to do this you realise how long it has been since you just turned off the noise in your mind. There are many apps you can download ( I use Harmony ) to assist you with this. Even if you just take 5 minutes at the end of each day to focus on your breathing. 

9. Turn off electronics: Have a hour or so during the day or night when you turn off all your technology and do something that is all about you. It could be just sitting in silence and relaxing or you could do something more upbeat. Without technology, you will be able to concentrate a lot better.

10. Start a book: Reading is a great way to reduce stress and focus your brain and thoughts. Choose a book that will interest you and that you will not want to put down. Society today has got into the awful habit of scrolling their phones before bed but how much better would it be to instead read a few chapters of a captivating book instead. 

  11. Have an early night: We all know how important sleep is, however, we sometimes struggle to get the right amount for our bodies. I know that we can just crave alone time so much that even when we are exhausted we can still sit up watching tv just because we finally have some peace and quiet. Make a habit of turning everything off and start having early nights so that you can get a good amount of sleep. 

12. Write it out: Journalling is a great way to practice self-care and help you to get all those negative thoughts out. Once they are on paper you will be able to tackle them a bit easier. Buy yourself a cute notebook or a guided journal if you are unsure where to begin. 

13. Enjoy your coffee (or tea): Instead of just simply drinking your morning tea or coffee, take the time to actually enjoy it. Focus on the smells, the flavours and enjoy every moment of it. Even better if your other half can take the kids to give you time to do this in peace. 

14.  Paint your nails: Adding a bit of colour to your nails can help you to feel a little more confident and help you to love yourself. Sometimes a simple act of loving yourself can make the world of difference. 

15. Invite your friends over: Spending time with others can be a big boost to your confidence and the love that you can feel for yourself. Invite your friends over, pump up the music and enjoy a bottle of wine or two. If you can’t get together even try a video chat. Video calls are much easier without kids around though. 

16. Get outside: Spending time outdoors in the fresh air can help with your mind and the thoughts that you have. It is also a great way to focus on your physical health as well. 

17. Sit up straight: A simple exercise such as making sure you sit up straight when you are sitting in a chair or on the lounge can actually help your mind and body a lot. It reduces the stress on your back muscles and can reduce pain in the neck and head.

18. Start a work out: Even if you do not have time for a full work out or can not afford a gym membership does not mean that you shouldn’t incorporate a daily workout into your routine. Even if it is 15 minutes a day – it will help. There are lots of online workouts you can do in the comfort of your own home and with minimal equipment. 

19. Write a list: By writing out the things that you need to do the next day, it can help you be organised, reduce stress and clear the mind of negative thoughts. It will also help you not to forget important tasks that need to be prioritised.

20. Say no: One of the most important things you can do to practice self-love is learning to say no. If you need to say no to plans with friends or no to working late – then do it. 

How you practice self-care is all about you so these are only guidelines and all of them are not for everyone. You do the things that make you happy and destress you. Going for a run is relaxing for some and most definitely not for others. The most important thing to practice self-care is to have self-love. Know your worth and make yourself a priority in your life. I totally understand how much pressure we are under as mothers but we cannot fill from an empty cup. Look after yourself mumma, you deserve it.

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