Am I the only one whose Google Calendar sometimes resembles a giant neon game of Jenga? The colorful blocks are stacked on top of one another and overlap with a complexity that tires me out before I’ve even followed through on the first commitment on the list.
Half the time, I haven’t even had a chance to take my coat off before my kids are off the bus and crashing through the door, declaring they are near starved to death and in need of immediate snacks. Once I’ve finally had a chance to get them satiated, my shoes off and backpacks hung up, I realize I still have no clue what I’m going to feed these people in about an hour.
There are mothers who are experts at self-care. These are women who rise hours before the rest of the house to light a candle, sip hot coffee and read a book. They use their time in the preschool pick-up line to touch up their nail polish. Work lunch breaks are used for haircuts and eyebrow waxes.
I’ve never been good at this. Meanwhile, my friend Jessica Turner wrote two whole books on this.
So how IS a mom who is so busy she barely has time to think supposed to take time for herself? We took this question to YOU, our community of readers to get your best tips. Our hope is that you discover a few fun new ideas to steal some valuable moments of self-care in the midst of your hectic day.
15 Ways Busy Moms Can Capture Moments of Self-Care
I have a stash of chocolate in my closet. I tell my daughter I’m going to fold laundry when, in fact, I’m hiding in my closet eating candy and reading my book. – Melania
I keep a tube of really good, yummy smelling hand cream by the sink. Just being able to put that on after washing my hands feels indulgent. – Adri
I run to the grocery store for a “must have” item, but I sit in the parking lot to check my social media and jam out to the radio. – Dolores
I start cleaning. As soon as the kids see me declutter or dust, they are gone. Then I sit and read a magazine. – Jackie
I head to the gym. Some days, I don’t even work out. I just drink a cup of coffee, do a crossword, and take an uninterrupted shower. – Kate
Another mom and I do a “run swap” when weather allows. We meet at one or the other’s house and one goes for a run around the neighborhood while the other watches the kids. Then, we switch. – Gina
I try to take a hot soak bath at least once a week, even if its quick. – Rachel
Going to Target by myself, getting a coffee, and browsing for as long as possible while trying not to spend any money. Also, keeping whatever book I’m working on by me at all times so that any time I have a few minutes, I open it up and read. – Abbey
In the mornings during the week I skip showering and getting dressed for work and focus on the kids. I then go to the gym at work and shower after my workout and head to my desk. On the weekends during naps I work out in the living room. On Thursday nights, I drink wine. – Mariana
My kids don’t have a sense of time yet, they just know that bedtime comes after dinner. Sometimes we have dinner at 4. – Meagan
A friend of mine and I swap babysitting nights once a month for date nights. She comes to our house on a Friday or Saturday when it’s our turn to go out and vice versa. I go to the gym from 6am-7am to start the day by myself a few times a week. I split up my cooking when possible-chop/prep in the morning, then most of the clean up is already done. Instead of cleaning up forever at night, I get down time. -Heidi
I found a Bible study that offers free childcare, coffee, and breakfast. Sometimes, the only thing that motivates me to go is the free childcare. – Heather
I like to take advantage of some quiet car time. If my 4-year-old happens to doze off on a car ride I sit and wait with her in the car if we have any extra time or lean my seat back and shut my eyes for a few! – Brigitte
For me it’s all about time with my friends, dinner, lunch, coffee, weekends away! – Renee
and the grand finale…..
I lock the door while pooping. – Melissa