Finding time in the day to take care of yourself is the biggest challenge for people today, but I think it’s harder for Moms. All Moms work, whether we are paid or not, and taking time away from the family and kids feels like an indulgence.
When I worked in an office full time and kept the kids in daycare for an extra hour so I could go for a run I felt guilty. Guilty that they spent an extra hour in daycare and selfish because even though I felt guilty, I still kept them there and went to workout.
Now that I work part time from home and want to go for a run after I drop the kids off at school I feel guilty because that is 2 1/2 hours per day that I can get my work done and make money. If I keep Jack in preschool an extra hour so I can work after my run, guess what? I feel self-indulgent and kind of like a bad mom.
However, I learned early that in order for me to do any of this and stay sane, I needed to take care of myself. That hour I spend at the gym helps release stress,tension and anxiety. It helps me sort out any problems I am facing and take stock of situations. I get my sweat on and things are ok in the world at that moment. I come home clear headed and ready to tackle my day. Yeah I feel selfish and guilty sometimes but you know what, I also feel that I’m setting a good example. Nobody wants to raise kids that see their mom as this suffering martyr.
The next time you are debating whether you are selfish for taking that hour to go to the gym, spin class, pilates or yoga remember this. When you are on an airplane one of the first safety instructions you hear is “…and if you are traveling with small children, secure your oxygen mask first…” You can’t help anyone if you are passed out on the plane. The same holds true in life.
Now go run!