There's no doubt about it: Moms work hard. We pack school lunches, schedule appointments, kiss boo-boos, and treat fevers at 3 a.m. Our work is never finished, and it can be difficult (or downright impossible) to find the time to take care of ourselves.
Fortunately, relaxing and rejuvenating doesn't always have to be time consuming. Consider the following simple ways to take time for yourself and recharge your batteries so you can continue taking care of everybody else.
1. Have an afternoon cup of tea or coffee
Keep your favorite tea or coffee in the pantry and brew yourself a cup any time you start to feel tense. There are many types of tea that are considered calming, or if you're like me, you'll love the caffeine jolt from an afternoon cup of coffee. The key here? Don't make your drink to go. Force yourself to sit down for at least 10 minutes and enjoy it!
2. Take a hot bath or shower
Hot water is one of the fastest ways to relax tense muscles. If you're feeling overwhelmed, a hot bath or shower can be a great way to unwind, and even a short one will leave you feeling re-energized. If you have the time, consider splurging on your favorite bubbles. What was that old commercial? Calgon take me away...
Parenting can be an exercise in patience. Sometimes, when your toddler is in the middle of a tantrum or your teen is in the midst of a "crisis," it can be difficult (or downright impossible) to remember to relax and breathe. That's where meditation comes in. If you take just 10 minutes a day to be still and quiet your mind, you'll reap many benefits. Don't know how to meditate? Check out these beginner meditation techniques.
It can seem overwhelming to fit in the recommended 30 minutes of daily exercise, but if we break it up into 10-minute segments, it's a little easier. And exercise raises our endorphins, which makes us feel better and can make it easier to face the rest of our day with a smile. Plus, a mom in better shape is a mom who can better keep up with her energetic kids!
5. Get outdoors
Even 10 minutes of fresh air and sunshine can work wonders for your mood and energy levels. Take a walk, work in your garden, or even take your kids to the playground.
6. Paint your nails
It takes less than 10 minutes to put a coat of polish on your finger or toe nails. Sure, it may not be as relaxing as a spa pedicure, but bright red or sassy pink nails can boost your self-confidence and make you feel just a little bit better about yourself, which in turn just might help you conquer a hectic day.
7. Write a thank you note
Take the time to think about someone else in your life and tell them why you appreciate them. An unexpected note will brighten their day, and bringing joy to others is one of the simplest ways to bring joy to your own day.
8. Read a magazine
Don't choose anything related to work or parenting. What are your hobbies? Take 10 minutes to read an article about home décor, or literature, or politics, whatever it is that really gets you fired up.
9. Dance to your favorite song
Music can be soothing, and dancing can be uplifting. Plus, it's hard not to laugh at yourself when you're a grown woman dancing around your living room. And laughter definitely lightens your mood and brightens your day.
10. Phone a friend
In these days of social media, it's easy to do all of our communication through emails, texting, or even Facebook. But there's nothing like the sound of a real human voice, particularly the voice of a true friend, to help us through a rough day.
How do you relax and rejuvenate when you don't have time for a day at the spa? What 10-minute tips would you add to this list?