I think I can consider myself more of a veteran homeschool mom, now that I have graduated my first child. We have homeschooled for 13 years now, and have been through numerous “seasons” as a homeschool family. I have learned a strategies about how to best cultivate wellness and take care of myself so that I can pour into my children in the ways God has put before me. I have been in seasons where self care is the last thing on my mind, others where I have no choice but to take some time for myself, and many in between.
I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
If you are a homeschool mom, you know how much is on your plate on a daily basis. I have learned it is crucial for us to prioritize our physical and mental wellness, so that we are more equipped to to effectively carry out our roles as busy homeschool moms.
5 WAYS TO FOCUS ON WELLNESS:
1. Create Consistent Routines in all Areas:
The way you start and end your days matter more than you think. It is crucial that we learn how to create consistent routines as homeschool moms because we tend to juggle more than most. We can easily get lost in the hustle and bustle of homeschool life, and find ourselves weary and burned out.
I highly encourage you to create morning and evening routines, and write them down in a place you will see repeatedly. I wake before my children so I have that time to myself each morning. I have my routines written down in my homeschool planner and in my daily planner, and I look at these multiple times a day. I have been doing the same routines for years now, so I don’t need to reference my lists often, but it is nice to have them written down regardless. I also wake before my children so I have that time to myself each morning.
When creating your routines, be sure to some self care items as well as something you enjoy.
For example, my morning and evening routines each have skincare as part of those routines. My evening routine includes reading and my morning routine includes Bible study. I work on my business for a short time in the mornings, after my self care tasks are complete. These things are anchors for my days and set me up for a successful start and a decompressing type of end to my days.
2. Focus on Self Care and Hobbies
Before you start to click out of this article, hear me out. We just briefly talked about creating routines and implementing a few self care items into those routines. Now, I want to reiterate just how important this is for homeschool moms.
I have been homeschooling for 14 years now. I just graduated my oldest and second oldest (early) this year and I likely have another 16 years of homeschooling to go. I have given birth to 8 babies, I have lost babies, we have moved multiples times, we had a daughter diagnosed with leukemia, we have had a severe epilepsy diagnosis, financial messes etc. I understand seasons and I have likely been through them all. I have been in seasons where my only form of self care was getting a shower once a week. I would laugh at the older moms who told me I needed to get out and take breaks. It just wasn’t possible!
I now get it. I am a more seasoned mother, a more seasoned homeschooler. I have been through the fire and then some. I have had years where I let myself go, mentally and physically, and I have paid the price for it. Not only have I, but my family has suffered because I didn’t take care of myself. I am changing that now and putting a big focus on my mental health, my gut health and my priorities. It is essential and I implore you to take some baby steps to do the same.
This doesn’t have to be anything drastic, especially if this is all new to you. If you enjoy reading, carve out 10 minutes a day and read a good book. If you enjoy skincare or makeup, take the 5 minutes in the morning to put some on. Get dressed in something besides yoga pants every once in a while. If you haven’t started switching over your household products to safer, cleaner options, I would encourage you to do so! It is amazing how many things change when you get rid of the daily toxin load. Start writing that book you’ve been thinking about, sit outside with a coffee and listen to the birds, garden, watch a tutorial on youtube, listen to a podcast while cooking, etc. Just add one thing into your routines for your own well being and let go of the guilt. Your family will be blessed by it, trust me.
3. Maintain a Balanced Diet
By now, we all know that we should avoid processed food as much as possible, much like avoiding toxins in our products. Nutrition plays a huge role in our overall wellness. Almost every illness and ache can be traced back to your nutrition, including your mental health. Try working on your gut health and watch watch happens to your mental health!
I encourage you to start tracking your food and beverage intake for awhile and see if you notice any similarities between what you consume and how you feel. You can balance your energy levels, your weight, your hormones and so much more by focusing on your diet. I have followed a keto diet with great success for years. Now that I am older, I have noticed the need to change my diet to reflect my changing hormones. I have been reading The Galveston Diet book with a small group of ladies and trying to incorporate some of that information into my diet.
Try to meal plan and prepare nutritious meals in advance, focusing on whole foods, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Avoid excessive consumption of processed foods, sugary snacks, and drinks. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day.
4. Move Your Body
Incorporate some sort of physical activity into your day to improve your overall well being. Find small opportunities to be active, even if it means small chunks of time throughout the day. Take walk, work in your garden, do some squats, climb the stairs, play a game of tag with your kids. There are many free videos on youtube now, so you can easily find a workout that is doable for your season of life. This channel is one of my current favorites since it is geared towards busy moms in all seasons. Involve your children and make it a game. I just heard a statistic that children, especially young children, are only as active as their mothers. That made me want to get up and moving that much more!
As hard as it is, exercise ultimately boosts your energy and endurance, stamina and mood. It might seem the opposite at first, but push through and build that consistency and it will pay off.
5. Get In The Word
If there was only one thing you could incorporate into your days as a consistent practice, let it be time spent in your Bible. This is where it all starts. This is where your consistency will produce the most fruit in your lives. This is the place from which all else flows, I promise you.
Spend just a few minutes a day in your Bible or join a local or virtual Bible study and dig deep. We have Bible resources for you here on this website here and you can easily find others.
Many are the plans in a person’s heart,
but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.
Remember, you do not have to do it all! We can not do it all. God did not design us to do it all. Write down your most important tasks each day, keeping in mind your own well being, and focus on those tasks. Delegate when you are able and cross things off when you need to. God will guide you in the rest.
Remember, self-care is not selfish but necessary to maintain your physical and mental health. Prioritizing your well-being will enable you to be the best version of yourself for your family and homeschooling responsibilities.