How I do “Me Time”
I have a 7 year old and a 1.5 year old. I also run my own business in which I am the business since I supply the services. As a work at home mom it’s hard to separate work time from home time. I have my own office space but when I go to the kitchen to get lunch, I can’t help but step into the laundry room to fold laundry. When I’m anywhere in the house other than my office, I have to keep myself on track to complete my work for the day and not get sidetracked with cleaning something or deciding what to make for dinner. I’m working on getting better at keeping work and home separate but it’s a challenge.
Like most working moms whether you’re in or out of the house, I find that my mind is constantly racing with my “to do” list. I shift gears between work and home all day and into the evening. My husband works late most evenings so I’m on homework, dinner and bedtime duty solo each night. Then it’s all too easy to step into my office after the girls are down for the night to see if I can finish an assignment for work. And because my 1.5 year old still wakes way too many times each evening, I don’t get many long stretches of downtime, not even to sleep. I’m constantly mommying, working, wifing 24/7. I’ve recently decided to make real efforts for me time.
Because If I don’t take the time for myself, it will never happen!
What does Me Time look like when you have no time?
I have to get creative when it comes to taking time for myself. There’s this whole list of what I really want to do, like yoga classes, spa days and reading before bed. I haven’t made time for any of that but I’ve recently made time for a few other plans in my schedule.
I rarely go to a salon and get a pedicure but I did the other day and it felt great! I do my on pedicures which come out pretty good but it’s nothing like having someone do it for you while you relax. Running your own business is non-stop and especially taxing when you’re a solo employee. But it comes in handy when you can take an hour off for a pedicure. It wasn’t easy getting me out the door but I found the trick was for me to not think about it. I just grabbed my keys and went before I talked myself out of it. Funny how something as simple as a pedicure can brighten your spirits.
Me Time with the Kiddos
I’ve found a way for “me time” even when I’m with one of my kids. Sometimes when my 1.5 year old is being particularly fussy or wants a nap and will not take one, we’ll go for a drive. This lulls her to sleep and gives me an hour of time for my own thoughts. I put rain sounds on in the car and drive for a while and then park in a scenic area while she sleeps and I take a mental break.
And just this weekend while my 7 year old was at a birthday party with my husband, I took my youngest for a walk around a quiet local mall. She had a blast taking laps around the place and it was down time for me. I didn’t have to entertain her at home (“let’s read this, paint this” etc.). She was right next to me enjoying the sights and sounds while I was in relaxed mommy mode.
Late Night Movie
This is one of my favorites. When the girls are in bed at night, I find a movie that I want to see. I’ll get out of the house and see a movie alone at around 8pm. The last one I saw was Book Club and next up is Oceans 8. I bring my snacks and sit in one of those reserved recliner seats and it’s “me time” heaven. No sharing of snacks. No bathroom visits with potty liners. No questions to answer. Aaaah…peace.
Walk In the Park
Walking in the park is an oldie but goodie for me. I’ve been doing this for years, way before meeting my husband and having children. I’m trying to get into the habit again. I’m considering going for short walks in the morning after dropping off my girls to camp and daycare before I start working. I went on one recently and it was mentally rejuvenating. The quiet and the stillness feel meditative and relaxing. It’s one of those things that always make me feel good, but I have to learn how to better incorporate it into my already jammed schedule.
I’m not where I want to be just yet with “me time” but it’s a start. I look forward to adding more plans to my list.