We spend a lot time taking care of our kids, trying to be better parents, trying to run our household, trying to be good partners and good sons and daughters. We are constantly on the hunt for the next trick in shopping, cleaning, beauty, parenting, relationships, anything to make life go along just a little bit easier. But there’s one thing we have a tendency to overlook that is probably the most important part of all of this:
Taking care of self.
You’d think there would be something built within us to tell us to stop, slow down, rest and rejuvenate. I suspect there is but somewhere along the line we have learned to ignore those signals. And so we barrel on. On to the next afterschool activity, the next store, the next bill. And we are dying inside.
I’m not immune to neglecting the care of self. I’m probably among the worst.
I’m writing this partly to remind myself how important it is to take care of my children’s mother. I’m the only one they have. When I run myself down, when I spread myself too thin, they only get part of me. They don’t get all that they deserve. So how am I doing them any favors?
My partner gets a cranky, irrational, irritable version of me that rarely has the capacity to act with love and reason. Because of what? Because I believe I must do it all? Be it all?
I have to accept that I can’t do or be it all.
Moms and dads, take time for yourself.
Do what makes you feel energized and happy. Be selfish. Because it’s not truly selfish to refuel. It’s what you must do to give all of yourself to your family. If you become too depleted you are not giving your full self and that, in and of itself, is unfair. They deserve better and so do you.
So get out there and do you. Your family needs you to take care of you. So you can take care of them. Do it the right way. What may seem selfish is the most selfless act of all.
Do you have trouble making time for yourself? What do you like to do to recharge?
- Taking care of Mommy (frompracticetoparenting.wordpress.com)
- 5 Ways Being Selfish Serves The World (monicaricci.typepad.com)
- Self Care isn’t Selfish (cauldronsandcupcakes.com)