Life with kids is hectic, to say the least. If you’re lucky enough to get one down for a nap, the others will inevitably require your immediate undivided attention, the third snack for the day or your taxi skills to get to another activity. Moms are on the move! They typically don’t get the luxury of scheduled breaks or the end of their shift.
Which is exactly why mindfulness for busy moms is essential! When you think about it, being a mom is all about balance. Whether you work outside the home or are a stay-at-home mom, you’ve got a ton of things to accomplish on any given day with a mental checklist and any number of screaming kids in the background offering constant distraction.
Mindfulness for Self-help
Somehow, you pull it all together and make everything happen for everyone else, but what about you? To keep balance you’ve got to find a way to take care of yourself, because if mama falls apart, the whole operation falls apart!
Mindfulness has become such a popular method for lowering stress levels and helping with all sorts of medical and mental health issues. But mindfulness for busy moms might just be the real jackpot here. Sometimes finding a yoga class matching our skill level seems just as impossible as allotting the time to get away and show up for the class itself.
The same applies to running out to a spa for a massage, not to mention massages aren’t exactly budget friendly these days. And forget about a weekend getaway or even a girls’ night out; that’s entirely too much planning and don’t we already do enough planning for our own crew?
Mindfulness Can Fit to Your Schedule
The best part about mindfulness, other than the obvious and immediate release of tension, is you can do it first thing in the morning, smack dab in the middle of the day, the end of the day and at night. You can practice mindfulness once a day or find mindfulness moments for busy moms all throughout the day. Yes, mindfulness can be just that simple. It’s all about being in the present moment and being aware of what’s happening right now. You take a moment to embrace the moment and allow it to happen, without pondering how it should or could be different. Here are a few ways to incorporate mindfulness activities into everyday life any time of the day:
- Deep, cleansing breaths. Ok, this one seems pretty obvious and probably at the top of all the lists. It’s easy, quick and can be performed all throughout the day. But for busy moms, this one is particularly helpful first thing in the morning before you’ve even gotten out from under the covers.
- Here’s why: Your mind is already processing the days’ activities before you even get out of bed. Take three or four deep breaths, count the seconds of each inhale and slowly count out the exhale. Even if you hear the kids pitter pattering down the hall or fighting over the bathroom, take this couple of minutes no matter what. Allow yourself to exist, without worry or contemplation, fear or anticipation. Just breathe and be.
- Bring on the java! Maybe coffee isn’t your thing, but whatever is, take a moment to sit down and enjoy it. Here’s how to do it mindfully; find a quiet space and don’t dive right in. Maybe while everyone is busy getting ready for school or maybe during snack time when all the littles have their mouths full of all those healthful snacks.
- Get your cup of goodness, sit down and take a mindful approach. Smell the aroma, notice how you feel before you’ve taken the first sip, take care to appreciate the first sip in all its splendor and how it feels going down. How does it taste? Is the cup warming your hands? These simple measures to keep focused on this exact couple of minutes, without distraction, is exactly what mindfulness is all about.
- Hide. It sounds ridiculous but it might just save everyone’s sanity that day. If you’ve ever gotten to the point of breaking, before you scream and yell and later regret it, go hide. Run to your favorite closet (consider the pantry, there are probably cookies in there) and just be with yourself.
No little people begging for your attention or squealing on each other. Close your eyes and take deep breaths. Take in your surroundings. After a couple minutes of solitude you are more likely to respond rather than react to the situation.
The world isn’t going to fall apart if you appear to disappear for a few minutes during the day, but your state of mind surely could crumble if you don’t make time for yourself. These are just a few suggestions to help you get started and more comfortable with the concept of mindfulness.
You could also incorporate meditation, prayer, journaling, or a brisk walk (even if it’s just the perimeter of the backyard). Maybe coloring or spending a few minutes crocheting is more your style. The point is to find the mindfulness approach that’s most effective for you as a busy mom.