Oh my goodness, ya’ll – this summer break has flown by! We’re heading back to school next week here, ready or not. How are ya’ll feeling? Your little people have been home for the summer, and you’ve been so busy trying to keep them fed AND entertained. . . that is a full-time job! Mix in playing referee, short-order cook, vacation planner, and back-to-school preparation CEO, and summer isn’t so easy breezy anymore. Making sure everyone is happy, healthy, and ready for what comes next is definitely stressful.
So – have you been able to really enjoy this summer? Have you invested in any self care? Going back to school will bring its own kind of stress, but it will also bring routines back into most of our lives. I’m a firm believer that we all function better on a schedule – littles AND grownups. Please make sure you utilize that to your advantage in scheduling some self care things!
You can go ahead and prepare for this! I’m sure you already know when your child’s school day begins and ends, and whether you will be taking and picking them up from school or a bus stop. Even if they will be involved in fall sports (before you know practice and games schedules), you can add yourself into the daily routine.
- Workouts: Really look at your daily schedule. I promise you will be able to carve out at least 30 minutes three or four days each week to get in a workout. If there’s no time or room in your budget for a gym membership, work out at home. You can get incredible results, I promise! The location doesn’t matter – your consistency does. Even if you wake up 30 minutes earlier each day, consistently, you will successfully achieve your goals.
- Nutrition: Will you be making lunches for your children to take to school? Why not go ahead and make yours?! Pick one day that is the least busy for you, or even a couple of days with a couple of “down time” hours. Plan a menu for the week, make a grocery list, then get your grocery shopping done. Remember, any time you spend waiting in a car rider pick-up line or sitting at a sports team practice is perfect for building an online grocery order. You can then just swing by the store and pick your groceries up from the parking lot! You’ll need one afternoon or evening to prepare meals ahead. Find a good cookbook or use Pinterest for inspiration and planning. Once your meals are done, portion them out into individual grab-and-go containers to store in your refrigerator.
- Show Yourself Some Love: Find what relaxes you and what helps you unwind. Plug in time for some yoga. Plan a massage. Read a book. Have a relaxing soak in your tub. Plan regular date nights with your spouse. Plan a game night and/or movie night with your entire family. Schedule those pesky medical appointments (dental cleanings, mammograms, physicals). While these things in particular induce stress, you’ll feel so much better when they’re checked off of your to-do list! And, if there’s something that has seemed off (fatigue, headaches, etc.) but you’ve just not taken time to deal with it – you’ll likely get answers and a plan. Investing in yourself will make you feel better.
- Sleep: Far too many people underestimate how important adequate rest is. Your overall health is directly impacted by the amount of quality sleep you get each night. Healthy, sustained weight loss and/or maintenance is much more successful with adequate rest; conversely, any weight loss and/or muscle building plan is sabotaged by inadequate sleep. Getting enough rest is crucial for balancing hormones, strengthening your immune system, recovery from illness and injury, and managing stress. Make sure you plug in a bedtime routine for yourself, just like you do or did for your kids.
Being a great wife and mom has to include taking care of yourself! If you’re not feeling well or stressed out, you cannot give your best to your family. Your loved ones are depending on you, so think of anything you do for your own health and emotional or mental well-being as an investment for them. And, honestly, you’ll enjoy your time with them so much more if you’re happy and healthy! You cannot pour from an empty cup!