GUEST POST: As parents, we all go through so much throughout the year, and we tend to forget about ourselves as we put our loved ones first — but this year, we want to encourage and inspire you to take care of yourself, as well. We all need our “me time” to regroup and focus on our health. Self-care is so important so here are some healthy tips to take care of your mind, body, and spirit in 2023:
Refreshing Your Mind
- Create a breathwork ritual; it’s quick and a breathing exercise will help to improve your well-being. There are many breathwork apps and guided sessions that are available for free online; click here for an example.
- Per WebMD, journaling your thoughts can also assist your mental health. It can be creating a to-do list so your mind isn’t racing or writing your feelings down to understand them better. Reading also helps the mind grow while learning new things.
- Bring some greenery inside. This is especially helpful during this winter season as plants and nature are known for their mental well-being in lowering stress and anxiety.
- Water is also known to have a relaxation effect on the mind. If you live by a water mass like an ocean or lake, take a visit. You can even take the kids. If not, spa Zen sounds are just as calming and are available for free here or you can purchase a sound machine.
- Listen to your favorite song as you prepare in the kitchen or are getting ready. Music can boost your mood and help you tackle the parenting duties of the day.
- Do a digital detox from social media and devices. This is not only a healthy habit for you, but a healthy habit for your children to see as well.
Keeping a healthy mind, practicing mindfulness, and being in the present is also important . Do not worry about what happened yesterday or what will happen tomorrow. Being in the present moment will help you enjoy it!
Refreshing Your Body
- Take care to have good, clean nutrition and add more plant-based foods to your menu. Foods affect moods and eating healthy choices will help your body and well-being. Some great food ideas to lift your mood are here.
- Drink water! There are so many benefits of drinking water. Per Medical News Today, water aids digestion, flushes toxins, carries nutrients and oxygen to your cells, helps blood pressure and kidney functions, and improves mood. Water even boosts skin health! A hack is to add lemon or other fruits to make water more flavorful to get in your hydration. Another water tip is to use frozen fruits to help keep your water nice and chilly. Here are more tips to get in more water here.
- Detoxify your beauty routine. Using clean, natural products can also help your body. You can even opt for natural remedies which have fewer side effects. There are so many great products out there that are safe, clean, and budget friendly.
- Get moving and grooving. It doesn’t matter if it is an intense workout or dancing in your kitchen; doing just 15 minutes of fast paced or moderate exercise daily is good for your heart and mood per Harvard University. Check out some ideas here. Yoga is also great for your overall health and helps you build flexibility, strength, and coordination according to the American Osteopathic Association. Yoga is also perfect in connecting and calming your mind, body, and spirit. There are several free online yoga options here.
- Another tip for your body is to spend time in nature. Going for a quick walk, hike, or tending to a garden could help you feel rested and relaxed. Exercise by yourself or even pushing the stroller can help you feel energized. Avoid sitting for extended periods. Try to stand or move as much as you can.
- Sleep is also so important for your body. Get in rest as much as you can and remember the rule to nap when the children nap. Slowing down can help replenish your body.
We know easier said than done but take a deep breath. We can do this together!
Refreshing Your Spirit
- If you are so inclined, say a prayer each morning or night. Attend a religious service. Regular prayer and meditation improve your attention, mood, immune system functions, and sleep. It just takes a few minutes a day!
- Visit a sacred space or create a special place for prayer and reflection.
- Another tip for your spiritual wellness is to seek support to keep the spirit balanced. It’s ok if you need help. A lot happens as a parent which can be overwhelming, but we need to allow ourselves grace and space. Even allow yourself time to cry because sometimes we just need to let our emotions out.
Spiritual wellness is so important. When one is spiritually healthy, you are connected to a higher power and those around you. Being spiritually healthy gives clarity and is consistent with your belief and values.
This year, just remember: It is perfectly fine to spend time on yourself and to treat your well-being. Taking care of ourselves is the best gift for ourselves and our family. We are raising and guiding our children with love and care; let us give ourselves that back and set the example for them.
Here is to 2023 and ME!