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As a parent, you might feel like it’s impossible to find the time for self-care. But sometimes, a few tweaks to your household routines can help you get your schedule under control. These tips will help you with everything from getting the outside help you need to manage your time more efficiently.
Improve Your Sleep Routine
A healthy sleep routine is an essential form of self-care. But what if you struggle to get your kids to bed on time and they tend to wake up early? Begin making changes by establishing a relaxing bedtime routine for your kids. Then, please take steps to help them sleep in, giving you more time to rest. Today’s Parent recommends shortening their nap times or shifting from two naps per day to one.
To wind down before bed, try putting away your phone and doing yoga or meditating. Make sure you avoid stimulants beforehand, too, like products with nicotine or caffeine. With the right preparation, you’ll drift off easily and feel refreshed and energized when you wake up!
What if your to-do list is too long, and you can’t free up even a half hour for self-care? It’s time to ask for help. For instance, talk to your partner to make sure that you’re splitting up parenting duties fairly. You could also reach out to your loved ones who live nearby about babysitting. You might consider trading childcare with a friend, too — you watch their kids on Tuesday afternoons, they watch your kids on Thursday afternoons. This gives you time for yourself, your work, or whatever else you need to accomplish.
There are also outside resources available for those who are ready to look outside of friends and family. If there is room in your budget, you could consider hiring a nanny. And if you need assistance with your professional responsibilities rather than childcare, hiring a virtual assistant could be a great idea! Virtual assistant rates range from $10 to $20 per hour. To choose the right assistant Boldly recommends determining which specific tasks you need help with and looking for contractors with those qualifications.
Weekend Meal Prep
Do you find yourself feeling overwhelmed as you rush to cook dinner every weeknight? Meal prepping on the weekends can eliminate your stress and grant you more time to yourself throughout the week! Yummy Toddler Food recommends planning out your meals, heading to the grocery store, and then preparing grains, veggies, and fruit in batches. Eating healthy while saving time will benefit everyone in your household.
Try Quiet Activities
If you can set your kids up with quiet activities and encourage them to use their inside voices while playing, you can also enjoy some downtime. For instance, if your kids enjoy playing with stuffed animals or doing puzzles, you can relax and read a book — they’ll be safe and content with minimal supervision.
Spending more time outside is a great form of self-care! Getting some fresh air, stretching your legs, and enjoying the sunshine can boost your mood. If you want to have some time to socialize, you could pair up with another parent to set up outdoor playdates.
Alternatively, you could utilize some of your free time to get outdoors on your own. For example, if you know that your partner will be spending time with your kids on a given afternoon, you could head out for a run, attend a yoga class in a local park, or grab a coffee and go for a stroll with a friend! These are all good ways to clear your mind and feel your best.
For many parents, making time for self-care is challenging. But self-care does not have to be out of your reach. By adjusting your schedule and finding low-maintenance, relaxing activities you enjoy, you can make self-care a regular part of your weekly routine.
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