We all have months, weeks, and days where your mental health takes a backseat. As a mom you are constantly prioritizing and accomplishing a giant to-do list that never ends. Attempting to be prepared for the months ahead, planning, cooking, cleaning, transporting, and more, all while trying to be present and engaged with your little ones.
As a mom, I too feel the weight of my to-do list and know the struggle to prioritize yourself amidst all the things that need to get done. Here are 3 ways to be intentional with your mental health amidst the chaos of motherhood. Each tip is simple, accessible, and time efficient in an attempt to not add one more “to-do” to your list.
#1 Transform negative self-talk with daily affirmations
I’m not sure if you’ve ever tried affirmations, but today’s the day! What do you have to lose? When we intentionally speak to ourselves- in our heads and out loud, in kind and affirming ways, it can shift the way we think and feel. The act of daily speaking true and kind things over yourself can be a simple and easy step in caring for your mental health. Affirmations can be done in the midst of any task, making them accessible for any busy mom.
Be intentional with your mental health by speaking regular affirmations.
For me personally, affirmations always feel a little awkward, maybe I take myself too seriously or just have a goofy vision of it in my head. Please see this SNL clip which is always what I picture… but I know I am worth pushing through the awkward and uncomfortable feelings if it means I feel better and am kinder towards myself, and you are worth it too. The act of saying something true about yourself out loud and regularly can impact your self confidence and self- talk. Check out these Momma Affirmation Cards to get you started, or create your own.
I would encourage you to start a weekly routine to ask yourself “What do I need to hear this week?” and make some affirmations based on that answer. You could also use these printouts as a starting point to create encouraging spaces by placing the affirmations where you see them regularly. Print them out and put them up around your house or in your car to remind yourself daily of your worth! Because you are worthy, full of value, and a truly great human and mom.
#2 Use guided imagery to create a safe and secure space on stressful days
If you’re here reading this blog I’m sure you have experienced the stress of motherhood and the challenge raising kind humans can be. There are days when it’s hard to stay grounded and rooted in kindness and patience as a parent. You can use guided imagery to help regain a safe and secure environment helping to reduce any high emotions and to be present and available for your children.
Check out this Favorite Place- Guided Imagery I created to ground you in the comfort and security of your favorite place by engaging your senses and some deep breathing. Guided imagery can be especially helpful if you have a chaotic toddler(hello, that’s me!) or a child that loves to test all the boundaries and you are having a hard time managing your emotions.
Guided imagery can help to create intentional safe spaces for your mental health to be supported.
As parents we know that being responsive means being able to respond to our children out of kindness and patience rather than stress or frustration. Guided imagery can be a quick and easy tool (I’m talking 5 minutes or less) to bring down any heightened emotions or make stressful days feel more in control. If you love guided meditations check out this playlist for a wider variety of guided meditations as well!
#3 Connect yourself with resources to support your mental health
Knowing when to ask or seek help can be an important and hard step. As moms, we are supposed to be the one with all the answers, and if you’re anything like me, you put huge amounts of pressure on yourself, but sometimes we need help.
In the midst of postpartum depression or anxiety or in the first weeks home with baby, it may be hard to even think through what type of support you need other than sleep. Often, carving out time for yourself and your mental health isn’t prioritized in today’s culture of the do-it-all pinterest mom, but is an important step to making the parenting process easier, more enjoyable, and it can benefit your entire family.
Your wellbeing is important and I hope you take some time to prioritize yourself this week. I know time can be limited and it can feel overwhelming to know which direction to start. Here you can find an amazing list of resources split up by self care type to get you started. There are experts in your city or online that are available to support you in a large variety of ways. These resources include both professionals local to you and virtual.
In general, resources to look into could include, but are not limited to:
- Licensed Counselors
- Massage Therapists
- Workout classes
- Local support groups
- Books to read
- Yoga Studios
- Guided meditations
This is just the beginning!
By starting with one or all of these simple steps today, you can make a HUGE impact on your mental health in the future. These 3 ways to be intentional with your mental health are helpful to pull from in those seasons you don’t feel like you have much effort to put in. I want you to know you are worth the effort, worth the time, and worthy of love and care. Your time is precious and so are you, so take time in small ways to take care of you. It makes a BIG difference.
Let me know if you try out any of these tips by commenting below and share any other self care resources or ideas you have to support maternal mental health.