When was the last time you had “me-time” and how did you spend that time?
The last time I had me-time was three days ago when I was using my Headspace app – it was literally just for a few minutes but since I started using it, around six months ago, it has become an important part of my life. It’s basically an app for guided meditation and it really helps me to switch off and clear the noise from my brain. When juggling a busy family life and an even busier new business, there can be so many things in my mind struggling for my attention. When I meditate I feel like I have more control over what I need to focus on. At first it felt counter intuitive to me to spend time switching off when I had so much to do, but I can’t believe how much difference it makes to my wellbeing to give my brain some breathing space!
What are some of your favourite ways to practice self-care?
I try to integrate aspects of self-care into every day. Since suffering from post natal depression it’s something that’s really important to me. I want to make sure that I’m making myself a priority, even if it’s just for a few minutes a day as just checking in with my needs can make such a difference to how I feel.
Some of my favourite ways to look after myself are catching up with friends. It’s so, so hard to find time to do this as a busy mum and entrepreneur, but when I do get together with my girlfriends it always resets my mood and reminds me who I am outside of mum life and outside of my business. I always leave feeling recharged and with a lot of good memories (and usually a lot of bad selfies too)!
Other things that make me feel like I’m caring for myself, are a bit more habitual – like getting my hair done every few months or simply buying my favourite beauty products. I’m obsessed with Liz Earle and Clinique skincare. Their products do incredible things to my sleep weary skin – I’m currently loving Clinique’s New Fresh Pressed System my skin is transformed within just a few days.
What advice would you give to mamas struggling to create “me-time”? How do you make time in your schedule for yourself?
When it feels like it is all getting on top of me I try and take a couple of steps back. I’ve come to realise that what works best for me is to ask myself if I really need to do whatever is on my list, right now. Can it wait? And although it sounds like a cliché, I try and treat myself like I would treat a friend. I think we’re all guilty of being a bit mean to ourselves and pushing our frazzled selves just one inch further.
When I find myself doing that, I try and zoom out on whatever is causing me stress and try and put things in context. For example, the disgusting mess that’s always in the kitchen – can it wait until tomorrow while I have a bath or watch Netflix? I think little kindnesses are the most realistic way for most mums to give themselves me-time, whether that’s booking a babysitter, treating yourself to the occasional cleaner or ordering a take-away to make for an easier life.
I try and take it in turns with my husband at the weekend to have a lie in for an extra half an hour too – although with a toddler, things don’t always go to plan. My daughter Bella seems to have her own ideas about what time I should get up in the morning!