15 In Motherhood/ Personal Growth

Making Time for Yourself as a Mom

Mom friends, I have something special for you today! We talk all the time about how important self care is…especially as a busy mom. It can be so hard to take care of ourselves when so many others demand our attention. I really do understand that. However, you can’t pour from an empty cup. It is so important to take a few moments each day, and do something for you. Yes, you. You matter and you deserve it.

That is why I am so excited to welcome Sarah from My Natural Baby Birth here to share with us how she manages to make time for herself – with three toddlers! Yes, you read that right. She has some great insight and I think you’ll be blessed. Thank you so much, Sarah!

Make Time as a MOM _ Just A Simple Home

How I Make Time For Myself With Three Toddlers

Let me start off by saying that’s not perfectly accurate.  I have three boys, and they’re all 18 months apart.  And there’s a 22 day window every September when I can say, “My boys are 1, 2, and 3 years old.”

That was last September, for example.  Then after the crazy chagrined look on people’s faces when I tell them that, I say, “It’s crazy” with a big smile.

Technically a toddler is defined as a child who is learning how to walk.  But the the next stage is a preschooler, and my oldest didn’t start preschool until he was about four.  He often acts like a toddler anyway, so I say that there was a time not long ago when I had three toddlers.

The Crazy Family Life

Being a mom of three that works full-time while my husband watches the boys, I can say that life never seems to slow down.  I get up at the crack of dawn to trudge off to work.  Then the moment I’m in the door, the boys are up from their naps ready for dinner.

   My husband is an introverted artist and absolutely needs his studio time alone as soon as I am home for the day.  So we tag team it and if I’m home, I’m ‘on’ around the clock.  It’s a struggle to even put first things first as a mom.

I can’t go to the bathroom by myself because they follow me.  I can’t even spend two minutes in my car in the driveway to meditate because they will see me pull up and come outside to get in with me.

Our house is on the smaller side and I can hear their noisiness from anywhere.  I can’t go far without my youngest crying that I’ve left him alone, even to just set him down while I’m cooking.

Such is life.  One of my goals for this year is to focus more time on personal care and relaxing attention to myself.  But how in the world do I make time for myself?  A couple of different ways.

babies snuggling

How I Make Time For Myself

It’s impossible to even attempt personal time if the boys are awake.  On a few occasions where they’re all playing quietly in their rooms, I’ve noticed a five minute window where I can just sit in my cushy chair and breathe for a moment.  But it’s not dependable.

So I focus on the fringe hours of the day when they’re asleep.  Before they are up for the day, and after they’re in bed for the night.  Nap time isn’t always a go.  My oldest doesn’t nap anymore and I can’t get him to have quiet time for much longer than an hour.

Recently I made over my mornings so just so that I could extra time for me.  On a non-work morning, I’ll often get up a few hours before they do and just do some things for me.

Then in the evening after they’ve been tucked in for the night, I’ll try to spend at least an hour on myself.

  • reading fiction or personal development books
  • catching up with my husband
  • taking a hot bath
  • watching netflix

One advantage I do have is the time I have commuting each day.  So I will do more than just listen to the radio while driving.

  • listen to inspirational talks
  • learn from educational podcasts
  • send voice messages to my friends and sisters

It doesn’t always workout every day.  Many mornings I’m just too exhausted and sleep in.  Some nights at least one of the boys just can’t get to sleep, so I spend all that time consoling him.

 

Tiny Moments That Add Up

So the only absolutely guaranteed time I have is when I’m in the car to and from work.  But it’s not purely relaxing because I have to drive.  However, it’s time.  Time is often all that I need.

Sometimes I’ll stretch it out for a few minutes by just pulling off to the side of the road to write a little bit.  Or I’ll tilt my seat back and just listen to calming music before I start the engine.

   Learning how to capture those tiny moments across an entire day is what really adds up.  I constantly remind myself that I can do hard things and know that I’ll have my personal time soon enough.

Would I prefer a week long vacation away on a sunny beach?  Absolutely!  So I bring the beach to me as often as I can with white noise apps that play beach sounds while I meditate.

I bring the calming heat of a massage with the hot water in my bathtub and a lavender candle.  I have the decadence of an elaborate meal out on the town with a piece of dark chocolate in the recesses of my closet.

   It’s never picture perfect or situationally ideal.  But it works for me.  Some day the boys will be grown and I won’t have the blessing in disguise of being bothered.  So I try to value that and find joy even when it drives me crazy.

How do you take time for yourself?IMG_0141_shrunk

 

 

Sarah Prince is a mom of three little boys, wife to an artist, and runs MyNaturalBabyBirth.com.  She teaches mothers how to prepare for the natural baby births that they want and desire. You can follow her on Facebook and Pinterest or contact her by email sarah {at} mynaturalbabybirth.com.

Friends, if you are craving some organization – whether in your mind or in your home – you need to check out this Ultimate Bundle for all things organization. AMAZING. But it’s only available until Monday, so CLICK HERE. And thank me later. 

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15 Comments

  • Reply
    Jessi Joachim
    January 27, 2017 at 8:58 am

    I love this. It is super important to have me time as a mom. We need time to recharge our batteries and regroup after raising tiny people all day. No matter if we are working moms or stay at home moms, every mom deserves some time to just recharge alone.

  • Reply
    Sarah Jean Althouse
    January 27, 2017 at 9:15 am

    Once I have kids I think I am going to schedule a bubble bath at least once a month for my self care 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah Prince
    January 27, 2017 at 9:50 am

    I’ve recently made it a goal to commit to having a bath once a week. I’m SO glad I did because it’s absolutely needed after such long days. I hope my story has inspired other moms to find more time for yourself, no matter your circumstances. You deserve it!

  • Reply
    Abbey
    January 27, 2017 at 10:00 am

    As a soon-to-be first-time mom, this really speaks to me! I love her point that little moments add up. It’s not always the big things that count, but the few minutes you spend in prayer or the little bit of time you spend in the Word. Those all matter! 🙂

    • Reply
      Sarah Prince
      January 27, 2017 at 4:47 pm

      No matter if you need hours or just a couple of minutes to find that peace, whatever works for you will be found. 🙂 Thanks Abbey!

  • Reply
    Jessica Kromer
    January 27, 2017 at 10:30 am

    Wow Sarah, I don’t know how you do it! I’m glad your husband and you worked out a system that works for your family. It is so important to have “me time” I’ve discovered and I have just one toddler. Thanks for sharing!

    • Reply
      Sarah Prince
      January 27, 2017 at 4:47 pm

      Thanks Jessica. It’s sure isn’t perfect everyday. But having a plan is so much better than just winging it. You’re gonna be great with your little one. As moms we’re great at constantly adapting to change, even though it drives us crazy! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kristin
    January 27, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    Yes, yes yes! I made the mistake after my little man was born of NOT trying to find time for myself! My favorite way is to sneak a run in on the treadmill first thing in the morning before anyone else is up. It’s so nice and relaxing.

  • Reply
    Abby
    January 27, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    I need to find a way to get my daughter to sleep longer in the morning so I can have more of a “me” routine!

    • Reply
      Sarah Prince
      January 27, 2017 at 4:45 pm

      Hi Abby! One thing that we try to do with our oldest boy is let him know that he can come out and ‘bother’ us once we’ve let him know that breakfast is ready. He’ll often wake around 7:30am, but his little brothers can still be completely out, so breakfast is usually around 8am. We even gave him a clock and showed him what it looks like so he knows when breakfast time is. Depending on your schedule, maybe you could try that? How old is your daughter? Good luck!

  • Reply
    Naomi
    January 27, 2017 at 7:39 pm

    This was so good! I don’t work outside the home, but I can relate to the need to make time a priority! I’ve begun getting up early enough to have time with Jesus, exercise, and do some work before the kiddos are all up – and it’s working beautifully! 🙂

  • Reply
    Michelle Koch
    January 27, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    So true that you can’t pour from an empty cup, love that visual. I think it is important to place value even on the small segments of time if that is all you have.

  • Reply
    Jenny
    January 28, 2017 at 11:46 am

    I love your point about how tiny moments add up! It’s not realistic to have the “me” time I crave every day, but I can hold on knowing that maybe it’ll happen the next day.

  • Reply
    lesley sullivan
    January 29, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    The little moments are the most important! I had an uninterrupted 2 minutes of pee time where I could sit in silence and flip through a magazine. It made my flippin’ day!!!

  • Reply
    Laneic
    February 21, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    I really like how you made it a priority to get self-care in my scheduling it into your day. It really helps to set time aside specifically for those purpose because you’re completely right; opportunities for it are far and wide with toddlers lol. We have to make it happen or it just wont. Great advice about getting up in the morning as well.

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