Parenting is hard. Parenting a highly sensitive child can be exhausting. Parenting when you are a highly sensitive person is draining. And it generally feels uncomfortable for many mothers to look after themselves, to even entertain the idea of self care. But if you don’t look out for yourself no one else will do it for you; when you are walking around with a full bucket no one benefits.
Here are 6 easy ways to take time for yourself that won’t break the bank or require a packed suitcase……
Grab your pencils, pens, crayons or paints (or your kid’s art supply) and colour, draw and create. Even ten minutes can be incredibly relaxing. Adult colouring books are hugely popular right now (UK link here) – and there’s a good reason for it. You can buy colouring books to accommodate every possible taste, from ones designed for mum (USA Link here) to animals or enchanted forest themes and from anti-stress and mindfulness to swearing colouring books……. yep, get it all out!
You can also go online and get colouring pages you love – like these ones I found by Leonie Dawson.
Grab a good book and read. Or your kindle, or tablet. It’s as simple as that. If you want to get creative then make a nook for yourself or borrow your child’s reading corner/tent/cushion. Get yourself comfy and lose yourself in a story.
In as little as ten minutes you can have a serious impact on the contents of your bucket if you meditate. There are lots of Apps out there (I use Calm and Headspace) to guide you and it really does make a difference. It brings your attention to the here and now and clears away the emotional and physical fog that can cloud your head.
Meditation is a miracle tool and I think it is something that everyone should try, even the kids.
Go for a Walk
Throw on your coat and get outside. With pram. With toddler. Wth child. Everyone will benefit from fresh air and a walk around the block. A change of scenery can really shake off the cobwebs and press the reset button.
Write in a Journal
I’ve written about journaling before but I’ll say it again – journaling is such a wonderful tool to create space in the mind. Just writing down one sentence in a journal can give clarity and help you feel calmer. Write down how you feel. Acknowledge your overwhelm, fatigue, confusion or happiness. Give it a place on a page. Give it a place in your mind. Get yourself a beautiful journal and get scribbling (UK link).
Give Yourself a Time Out
Sometimes you need to walk away from everyone and spend time on your own. Even for a few minutes. Enforce a time out on yourself and retreat to a quiet spot in the house. Do nothing but breathe.
Remember – looking after yourself means that you are in a better position to help your child(ren). There’s nothing selfish about it!