Like what I did there? I think Im clever.

Recently I asked on facebook what you all struggle with and overwhelmingly the response was about finding the time to do anything for yourself. From exercise to packing a lunch there is just no time after you do everything else.

It is hard. Its hard to change your behaviors. Especially when those behaviors are centered around the idea that you must take care of everyone but you all the time. Man do I know about this.

But here is what I found. I kinda suck at beinga Mom when I dont take care of me. When I make the time to do the things that keep me happy and healthy Im better and more effective at everything I do. Im more calm, patient, energetic and generally enjoyable. I find that when I dont make time to take care of myself Im worn thin quicker and sometimes get a little resentful and cranky that I spend all my time on everyone else.

What all does taking care of me entail? Not much really.

I take the time to prepare nutritious food that will make both myself and my family happy.

I paint my nails every evening that they are chipped. It makes me feel pretty and it makes me sit still.

I work out. Almost every day. Sometimes with a friend, sometimes with a group and sometimes with my ipod playlist and no thoughts at all.

Some days I spend most of my workout stretching and listening to slow down music (my fav is Erykah Badu, personally).

I spend gratuitous amounts of time shaving and conditioning my hair.

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I give myself time outs when I need them.

I take nights off and go on dates with my husband or go dancing with my friends.

I get ready to do everything super early so Im never late and Im never in a hurry (completely unnecessary constant stressor).

I live in the silver lining and waste almost no time beating myself up, about anything, ever.

You dont have to do it how I do. But its SO true that you cant be good to anyone else until youve been good to you. And if you do the whole put everyone else first cause Im a Mom martyr thing they lose in the long run too because teaching your kids to be happy people requires you be an independently happy person to. Lead by example. Be a better everything. Schedule yourself. Every day. I give you permission. =)

Love, Mama