Self kindness for mums: 8 ways mums can be kind to themselves

self kindness

It’s National Random Acts of Kindness Day next week, and it got me thinking…as mums, I feel we spend a lot of time being kind to others….meeting the needs of others first. And so while I’m all for random acts of kindness towards others, I’m going to say something controversial and say that first we need to start with ourselves, with self kindness for mums. We women and mums have been conditioned to serve others and be selfless. That has just been the way of the world, and evolution. However one thing I have learnt in these four years of mum life against the backdrop of today’s crazy modern world is that before we can fill up the cups of others, we need to fill up our own cup! So let’s talk self kindness for mums and some ways mums can be kind to themselves.

Know that you are enough and have done enough

As mums, we can really give ourselves a hard time, and the truth is that most of the time we are far from kind to ourselves. We let mum guilt beat us over our heads, we belittle ourselves and reprimand ourselves for the things we have or haven’t done. Let’s give ourselves a break and be kind to ourselves by silencing the inner critic which would take up all of our mental bandwith if gave it our chance. We are mum enough and we have done enough. Stat.

Make peace with your body

If we’re not busy berating our actions, we’re putting a downer on our bodies. But the thing is, without our bodies….what would be able to do? Not much. So yes, our bodies may not live up to the ridiculous expectations put on us by the magazines and marketers, but they have been with us every day since our birth, they has grown with us, they achieved so much with us, and they have birthed our babies. Let’s be kind to ourselves by acknowledging and loving our bodies for all they have done for us.

Focus on what you’re proud of

As I mentioned above, it’s so easy to focus on what we get wrong, and what a drag than can be! So instead of beating ourselves over the head with a big old neg club, let’s be kind to ourselves by thinking of all the things we ARE proud of. If you’re sitting there reading this thinking you can’t think of any then walk away, go and make yourself a cup of coffee and start thinking and writing them down. Everyone has moments they are proud of….sometimes it just takes a little remembering that’s all.  In this daily hustle of mum life, we’re usually so busy being our children’s cheerleaders, that we forget to be our own cheerleader too.

Schedule in some me time

As mums we are so focussed on pleasing our nearest and dearest than we forget about pleasing one of the most important people in our lives – ourselves. I know a lot of people think that “me time” is selfish but well I’m sorry, how can it be selfish if it makes you a better human being and a better parent? Me time is so important to help us mums to re-focus and regenerate and if it’s for the greater good then not only it is being kind to ourselves but also everyone around us too.

Forgive yourself

How forgiving are you of those around you when they make mistakes? I bet a whole lot more than when you make a mistake! If you find it hard to forgive yourself when you have effed up then take a leaf out of your children’s book – they literally forgive and move on, and you should allow yourself that courtesy too. Hint – our children do not define us by and will not remember us for the mistakes we have made…only the good things we have done for them.

Picture yourself as your best friend

If you’re struggling with being kind to yourself then here’s something that might help. When you’ve effed up or you’re feeling bad about something, rather than looking at it from your point of view, imagine what you would say or do if your friend was sharing how they felt about what had happened. Well, I’m banking on the fact you wouldn’t start berating them for hours on end or tell them what a silly muppet they had been! No, you would treat them with kindness, and help them see that for the most part – it doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. Oh hello! That applies to you too 🙂 Funny how we can be so much kinder to others than we can ourselves isn’t it?

Get together with your friends….

I’ve written before about how friendships change after you become a mum but friendships are still so important however they have evolved or whoever they have evolved with. Sometimes getting together with friends to decompress and feel like a person again – not just a mum, or a work drone – is one of the kindest things you can do for yourself…especially when you make sure there are lots of laughs involved. Humans and in particular women deeply crave interaction that if we don’t have it, it can be damaging for our wellbeing so go ahead and have that girls night out without feeling guilty about it!

And finally….be kind to others

OK I know I said that this was not about other people but you see….in a funny way it is. Here’s the crux of the matter – the way you treat others is a reflection of how you treat yourself. So for example, if you go around judging others then the liklihood is that you are probably quite harsh on yourself too. I definitely remember in my early days of motherhood that there was a very strong correlation between the two! Without sounding too hippy dippy being accepting of others and being accepting of yourself are intrinsically linked. Geddit?

10 ways mums can be kind to themselves

There are so many other ways mums can be kind to themselves that this is really just the tip of the iceberg. How do you try to be kind to yourself as a mum? I’d love to hear your tips and strategies for self kindness for mums – do share in a comment below.

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32 comments

  1. This is such an important post! Mum are constantly on the go – they are on a shift 24/7 and sometimes they need to give back to themselves! I’ve watched my mum go insane running after all four of us all the way until her hair cracked grey! I wish she loved herself a little bit more.

    http://www.nmdiaries.com

  2. I always absolutely LOVE your posts. This one is my new favourite. I need to be kinder to myself. I’ve started scheduling in me time, but I need to work on not feeling guilty about it. I love some of your ways you can be kinder to yourself. I definitely need to forgive myself a lot more and make peace with my body. xx

  3. This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately after coming close to the brink not long ago! I took myself on a date to the cinema – it was bliss not having to think about anyone else and eating all the popcorn myself! #coolmumclub

  4. Amazing tips. I definitely find some of these easier than others. Like being kind now comes naturally because I have had some experience but before I was all judgey! I struggle with me-time – as in using it wisely! I end just wasting it or faffing that I don’t feel so I need to try and make better use of the rare “alone” opportunities.

  5. Thanks for a great post, found via #coolmumclub. I pinky promise to try to be my own cheerleader and give myself a break from all the self-criticism. (And a break from being a teeny bit critical of others)

  6. Yep we could all definitely do with being kinder to ourselves. I often think we should treat ourselves like we would a good friend, think about how much we would do to help them, and that way we may actually give ourselves a break every now and then! #coolmumclub

  7. With pretty much every problem under the sun in this pregnancy, I’m learning to care for myself more and more. Due to my SPD I cant go into town for lunch without being crippled with pain at night and its not worth it.
    A daily soak for an hour or two with Netflix on and bubbles in the bath seems to help relax me enough to wash the pain away for a moment. Sometimes selfishness is required! #coolmumclub

  8. So true, we all need to be kinder to ourselves and by being kinder to others we feel better too! My blog this week is about how I took a Mum break and despite initial feelings of guilt and anxiety, it felt soooo good to have some time to focus on me and only me! Thanks for hosting #CoolMumClub xxx

  9. When I look at the early days at motherhood it’s painfully obvious I was lacking in some self care. Guess hindsight is a wonderful thing, and I’m so grateful that now I get a daily dose of me time which I get to spend as I choose.

    Sending a huge dose of #coolmumclub love x MWAH

  10. Having some me time is so important its just so hard to bloody schedule in! I find once the kids go to bed I want to do something for myself, whether it be have a bath or do some blog writing or reading. Some great tips! #coolmumclub

  11. As women generally and mums in particular we are so often our own worst enemies with each other but particularly with ourselves. I wrote a love letter to myself on the blog this week just to give myself self-care in a different way and found it quite a powerful exercise. I was doing well but then saw some photos of myself and starting body-bashing myself again. It’s a work in progress this self-care bit. Good tips though #CoolMumClub

  12. Yes to all of these! It’s so easy to put ourselves last when there’s kids to look after, work to do, a house to clean, and so on. But the more you look after yourself, the easier it actually becomes to look after everything else. Saying all that, I still struggle with taking “me time” and feeling that I’m being selfish doing it. Stupid huh! I usually have to rely on my husband to remind me and he knows what signs to look out for now (usually it’s me losing my shit!). Thanks for the post x #coolmumclub

  13. Some really good advice here Talya. It is so easy to put ourselves at the bottom of the priority pile and like all bad habits it is difficult to break, but well worth it once you do. Me time is so important and I always make an effort to grab a slot in my day when I just switch off and do something for me – actually at the moment my family might say I am doing quite a lot of that but hey ho, you have to seize the moment while you can. The other point that you make that is really resonating with me at the moment is the body bashing – my post surgery bod is causing me a lot of angst and actually I need to put it in perspective and remember that it’s not all bad. #coolmumclub

  14. Ahh this is a lovely post. You are so right: friends do change when you are a Mum. A close friend of mine (before I had kids) who had a baby changed the way she was with me. We were no longer close. She gained new friends, a new circle. I found it hard to come to terms with until I had kids haha.

    Great post. #Coolmumclub

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