Feeling Phenomenal When You’re a Parent
In our culture it’s quite acceptable to wear yoga pants all day, have cheerios in your hair, have spit up on your shirt, and always look a little bit like a hot mess once you become a mom. And you know what? It’s OK if you do! Being a mom is exhausting and demanding. Compared to the single life, it’s a lot harder to look and feel phenomenal as you’re running around after toddlers all day, taking care of newborns all night, chauffeuring kids around all day, preparing lunches, making loads of meals, washing loads of dishes, cleaning all the time, and the list goes on. I get it. I really get it.
I’m not a lifestyle, fashion and makeup guru although here’s how I make a mom-friendly capsule wardrobe. And I do know this: when I feel put together, somewhat taken care of, and I like the way that I look then I operate better. I’m a much more patient, upbeat, and positive person. So I happen to think that it’s an incredibly powerful parenting tool to make yourself feel like the best version of yourself. When we feel good and feel confident going out into the world (not like we’ve lost ourselves) we have more energy to show up for our children with more love, patience, energy, space and joy! We just have more of ourselves to give.
I know you might be running on sleepless nights, and that it feels like there is zero time for self care, but I just want to get it in everyone’s head that when you’re a parent of little kids it’s your duty to feel good!There's no shame in taking every measure you can to feel phenomenal. Feeling good directly benefits your kids.via @ParentingJunkieTweet This
8 Ways to Make Yourself Feel Phenomenal
- Don’t snooze – Now you might be thinking “Avital, I don’t get to snooze. I have little people who wake me up in the morning.” And yes you do! To me, the difference between snoozing and not snoozing though is how groggily or unhappily you roll out of bed in the morning. If your begrudging that you have to get up, or dragging your feet – to me that’s snoozing. Now I know, this is also a question of if you’re a morning person, and how much sleep you got. However, there’s something about starting the day with mojo – like you mean it. Get up because you want to and greet the day. Open the blinds right away, have a stretch, or create a tiny little morning ritual. By the way, “don’t snooze” is doubly important if you’re sleep deprived. Your body needs that signal to say it’s time to start the day now. Nobody feels good when they start their day feeling moldy, sluggish, and grumpy whilst hiding under the blankets.
- Get Dressed in the Morning (to shoes)- Some of you may be thinking you don’t have time to get properly dressed, or your kids immediately demand things of you. Let’s drop the “don’t have time” excuse though, as we all have control over our time. With your kids, you can set limits! “Honey, I’d love to help you with that right after I get dressed.” What I mean by getting dressed is wearing clothes that you didn’t sleep in, and preferably ones that you feel good in, are clean, look nice, and fit you. I’m not sure where this idea came from that parents just wear raggy t-shirts, loungewear, or activewear all day. You know what makes you feel phenomenal though. Obviously it’s not idea to be wearing some dry-clean only silk dress while you’re taking care of your kids all day, but let’s start with clean and makes you feel good.
- Do Something for Yourself – Maybe it’s the shower, the hair, and the whole thing. Maybe it’s just washing your face and a little bit of makeup – or a full face of makeup, an accessory, If you were going to an office, or even to the supermarket, you would put yourself together more. There’s no reason you can’t do that at home if it makes you feel good. It signals to yourself that you’re showing up for the day! None of these comments come from judgement. I just thinking most of us feel and act better when we aren’t crusty. Again, doing something for yourself I think is doubly important when you have a newborn or a toddler and your whole day can feel like a blurry blob of bodily fluids.
- Add Fragrance – Most of us only put on perfume when we’re going out or for a special occasion, but it can add so much sensory pleasure to your day to smell something yummy the whole time. Maybe you want to diffuse oils, burn incense, or perhaps it’s your freshly brewed coffee. What scent will make you feel phenomenal? Most of respond very well to this little psychological trigger that life is inspiring, special, delicious, and exciting and you deserve to feel phenomenal. Even adding basil to your salad, or lemon to your water then taking a moment to smell it can completely invigorate you.
- Use Music – Calming mediation? Beyonce? Your 90’s playlist? Whatever is going to get you going and make you feel phenomenal. Use it. Music takes pretty immediate effect. Apply liberally! This is just a good parenting hack. It’s such an easy way to show up with more energy and joy, plus you’re modelling how to live a life that feels great to them.
- Eat Food You Love – This one could a whole separate post, but I want you to start treating yourself really well. That means you sit down, you eat your food, chew it properly, and eat your own food as opposed to your toddlers crust, take the time to actually prepare the food, and eat somewhat mindfully and in tune with your body. I’m not a nutritionist or a fitness coach but I know that treating yourself well and feeling phenomenal is something that starts from the inside out. If you want to feel good, you simply can’t start your day with something makes you feel sluggish and bloated – not going to work. It directly influences your kids if you have a tummy ache, so it’s so worth it to figure out the best food for your body.
- Take Time for the Little Things – Whether it’s drinking your coffee while it’s hot, or taking time for that phone call or that email – take the time for the things that are important to you. Don’t put yourself at the bottom of the to-do list. This might sound paradoxical but trust me on this one. By making time for the things that matter to you and saying things like “Sorry, I promised myself I would read a chapter of this book” it sets a tone in the home and in your mind. Plus your kids get used it and actually become more independent, doing the things for themselves that they can do! Projects or things that are important to you, are important for the whole family.
- Create a Night Time Ritual – What happens to a lot of us when our children finally go to sleep is that we just flop. We’re exhausted! So we binge out on Netflix, scroll Instagram, or just online shop. I want you to take back your evenings to be a time that you do things that make you feel good. Sometimes that’s Netflix I know, but also think about future you. For example, I feel a thousand times better if I wake up to a clean kitchen and have at least put the breakfast bowls on the table. It’s these little rituals that make you feel taken care of. What can you do the night before to make the next day easier for yourself? Lay out the everyone’s clothes? Prep some food? Pack a day bag?
My main point is take back your evenings to be truly productive to set your future self up to feel good, OR make them truly relaxing and do something that winds you down and feels restful. Take a bath, listen to a good podcast while you fold laundry, put on foot cream, do your nails. It is all about what feels good for YOU. And la crème de la crème of self care is going to bed early. I am in bed by 10:00pm every night, eyes closed. We all know sleep deprivation is a form of torture. Good quality sleep is good for your mood, mental health, digestion, skin – everything.
I want to leave you with the idea that family life is inherently challenging and full of stresses so we need to take every opportunity we can to feel good. It’s selfish in a great way. We show up better for everyone when we’re taken care of and in a good state mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually so we should do everything we can! This is how we’re going to enjoy family life and create family bliss.
Which technique here would make YOU feel phenomenal? Join me on Instagram @parentingjunkie.