This post is in collaboration with Champneys
As a busy mum of four, day to day life can be so hectic. Having two children at school, one at preschool and a 6 month old, between feedings, school runs, MOUNTAINS of washing and remembering everything that everyone needs on a daily basis, sometimes it seems there isn’t a moment to breathe.
Since having my first 9 years ago I’ve noticed a huge increase in the awareness of the importance of maternal mental health. I feel like once upon a time you were expected to just get on with it, and now it’s becoming much more recognised how important it is for new mums to take care of themselves and their well-being as well as their families.
I know when life is hectic, I start to feel overwhelmed, which in turn can lead me to feel anxious and panicky. I put a lot of pressure on myself to remember everything and make sure the kids don’t want for anything but where does that leave me? Exhausted and emotional. Especially when I forget something and end up feeling like a failure. FYI one forgotten show and tell does not a bad mum make.
Since having Ottilie in November I’ve made it my mission to make sure I give myself ‘downtime’ regularly. When the kids are in bed, it’s very easy to push yourself into tidying the house and doing all the things you didn’t get done in the day, but actually this is the perfect time to push it all aside and take some time for yourself.
Some of the ways that I’ve been doing this are:
Taking a bath – just taking yourself off for a long hot bath, with some nice smelling bubbles and no rubber ducks in sight can make the world of difference to you unwinding after a long day.
Organisation – during the day, being organised and having lists for what you need to do means you can be much more productive and are more likely to get things done, meaning you get some downtime in the evenings.
Get an early night – with a small baby, sleep can be a rarity so taking an early night can be so beneficial – even if you are likely to be woken several times throughout the night.
Read a book – one way that I can guarantee to switch off is by reading a good book. Once I’m engrossed in a book on my Kindle I can shut off for a few hours, which also helps me unwind before bed.
Treat Yourself – when you have children, it’s very easy to spend all your time and spare money on them. Sometimes try and treat yourself, even if it something small like a new lipstick, it can make you feel like a new person.
Take the day – Following on from my last til about treating yourself, if you are able to, grab your best friend and take the day off. Getting away for a spa day is the perfect way to do this. Champneys has gorgeous Spas in various locations in the South of England, and offer a wide range of treatments. It’s the perfect way to relax and unwind, whether you are looking for a massage, manicure or just some quiet time away for a few hours.
Photographs © Champneys
Remember you can’t always do it all – I spend most of my time running around like a headless chicken and feel that as a stay at home mum, a lot of responsibility is on my shoulders to get everything done. It isn’t. The trick is to delegate. Get everyone else in the house involved in helping with housework – kids love to help and even small jobs such as dusting or tidying their rooms give them a great sense of satisfaction.
Finally remember that a Happy Mum means Happy Children. Prioritising yourself and your well-being will benefit the whole family in the long run. You are doing an amazing job!
Disclaimer: This post was in Collaboration with Champneys but all words and opinions are my own. Permission for reproduction of their images was kindly given by Champneys. All other photographs are my own.