I am thrilled to be part of the Empowered Self-Care Blog Tour http://selfcaretour.livenotorious.net; showing how important it is to take care of yourself! Be sure to check out the other amazing woman participating in this 8 day tour- there are a lot of gems to be found in each of their blogs. #selfcaretour15 #livenotorious
As a Wellness Coach, I talk to women (mothers of young children mostly) about their relationships. What many women don’t realize is that dissatisfaction in your marriage has very little to do with your partner (excluding the extreme situations where there is abuse or safety issues).
Most women can change their experience of their marriage by simply increasing care for themselves.
This is where I start with all my clients- by seeing what we can shift from their side of the relationship first. We often start by talking about creating a plan for increasing self-care.
Here are some important points to keep in mind when enacting a self-care plan for yourself.
#1: Notice when you need more self-care
Tune into the warning signs. For me a big warning sign is a feeling of dissatisfaction. This shows up often as thoughts directed toward my partner, (if he was different then I’d be happier) my home (if I only had the money to change this or that) the place I live--- it’s almost always something external. Other warning signs: snapping at others, reaching for sugar or other substances; escape through TV or Internet, or just a general low feeling. I read these warning signs as a direct message that I need to increase my self-care.
Be sure to check out Kendra Kantor’s blog earlier in the empowered self-care tour for more on the warning signs.
#2: Shift your mindset
You need to value yourself, your happiness, and your life. You are important! As a mother, your energy affects the whole household. Your children look to you; you set the whole tone of the house. Women are often the keepers of the heart and tenders of the marriage too. When you are resonating brightly, all others in your family will be affected.
So notice how you tend to put yourself on the back burner! Notice your thoughts. Make a choice to put yourself first. This is also about taking full responsibility for your happiness. Remember that you have the power to shift your experience by the choices you make every day!
#3. Know thy self
Build on what works and do what is authentic to you. Do what you like to do without getting caught up in comparison to what others are doing. Study yourself- what triggers you? Be curious about what works and what doesn’t. No more “shoulds.” Don’t take up yoga because you think you should- when what you really love is going for long walks.
#4. Make a Self-Care List or Chart
Get out some paper, and your favorite pens, markers, or colored pencils and list all the little things that you like to do for each area of your life: physical, mental, emotional, spiritual. Think of it as a love note to yourself that serves to remind you. The act of writing this out and creating it by hand is a powerful experience for your brain- so don’t skip this step! To help, you can imagine that your highest self is speaking or you can tune into that “motherly voice” within. (“Now Lauren, remember to eat your vegetables- remember you love to dance?”)
Look at your self-care chart often and ask yourself: am I doing what I said I wanted to do? This chart can be your go-to anytime you notice the warning signs and you can pick something to do to take care of yourself right away. It's also great to acknowledge all the things you are ALREADY doing to take care of yourself.
Here’s an example of a chart I made a few years ago in which I added some lovely affirmations.
#5: Pick ONE thing to start with
When implementing new habits and behaviors, I advise my clients to just pick one thing. Have the thing be easy so you can build your trust in yourself to follow through. By enacting a self-care plan we are not trying to hold ourselves to some ideal of perfection nor are we aiming to bully/shame ourselves more for not meeting goals.
Be sure to take time to celebrate when you’ve established new habits or completed what you said you were going to do!
Some other reminders:
If you desire (or need) more personal support as a mother in enacting a self-care plan for yourself or support in shifting tension in your marriage contact me for a complimentary session to see how coaching can support you in your goals.
Find this post interesting and helpful? Enter your name and email to join my community to receive more valuable information on boosting your relationship spark …and the spark in life