We’re all familiar with the expression, “If mom is happy, everyone is happy,” right? Seriously though, how many moms do you know who put their own happiness FIRST? Most moms I can think of (myself included) tend to live by the operating principle of “When everybody else is happy and taken care of, and if I have any time or an ounce of energy left, I’ll think about my own happiness.”
It’s time that we acknowledge a true reality here:
Taking care of others WITHOUT TAKING CARE OF OURSELVES does not actually make anybody happy!
When I put my energy and attention into everyone else – at the expense of myself – I can easily get caught in a mindset of scarcity: not enough time, didn’t get enough sleep, not getting enough exercise, didn’t get enough finished today…
As opposed to living from a mindset of sufficiency, a belief in ENOUGH. There is enough (sleep, time, completed tasks…). I am enough. God is always enough.
Setting the Tone with Intention
Every day, as Mom of the House, I have a powerful impact on the tone that is set in my home and in the hearts of my family members. Others will, consciously or unconsciously, take their cues about how to respond, how to be, & how to feel…from me.
I’ve learned that fostering a positive tone in my home is only possible – or at least, much easier – when I keep myself feeling content, healthy, and grounded in our Lord. I’ve also learned that when I am NOT feeling grounded or content or healthy, the tone in my home can quickly deteriorate to one that feels tense, stressful, argumentative, and blaming or judging.
Does this happen in your home too? It’s one reason why attending to our own self-care as mothers is imperative, and anything but selfish!
Below are 9 of my daily practices that help me stay calm and grounded in the Lord, so I can effectively lead-by-example in fostering the climate I want to create. In my home and in my heart.
- Start with Gratitude. Before I step out of bed, I thank God for the day, for my children, my husband, my busy life, and whatever specifics I am feeling grateful for in that moment.
- Consult the Master Planner. I ask the Lord for His guidance to spend my time wisely today and to place my energy and attention on what HE wants it on. We all live busy lives. Who better to arrange my priorities and guide my limited time than the Master Himself? He sees a far broader perspective of my life and priorities than I possibly can. This relieves any sense of overwhelm by taking my focus off of ME and placing it on HIM!
- Breathe in fresh air every morning. I have a habit of opening the back door, stepping onto the deck for a moment – even on the cold or the rainy days – and taking a deep breath of fresh air. Ahhhhh!
- Exercise. Moving my body several times a week gives me a sense of vitality and health. A short morning jog is my favorite. I also enjoy stretching, which, as I age, is a MUST for keeping me loose and limber!
- Eat healthy; from nature. I like to eat something at every meal that is still in the form in which God made it. An apple, a carrot, a salad, brown rice or barley, pineapple with shredded coconut, avocado slices, … Pinterest is a constant source of healthy food inspiration!
- Sunshine breaks. Whenever possible, I take a sunshine break during my workday. I put my face in the sunshine (from inside the window or outside), close my eyes and feel the warmth! Warmth from the sun and the Son! That’s it. Done in 10 seconds and refreshes me for at least an hour!
- Have a supportive internal dialogue. I partner with myself, rather than fighting with myself, in meeting the various demands each day brings. This is a BIG ONE.
- Hug my children and my husband frequently. I need that heart-to-heart connection that happens when we hug one another. And they need it too (even when they don’t think they want it, they still need it).
- Read at least 1 chapter in my Bible each day.
What are your daily self-care habits?
Copyright 2016 De Yarrison
Graphics copyright 2016 De Yarrison. All rights reserved.