Self-Care For Single Moms (From A Single Mom)
Why self-care is important for single moms
Self-care for single moms is absolutely crucial for surviving and eventually thriving as a single parent. Being a single mom can have you feeling stressed, irritable, angry, and overwhelmed. If you are a single mom, you’re not alone in your journey. In America, 80% of single parent families are from single mothers. And in the UK, around 90% of single parents are women. Some of the things single moms struggle with are feeling stretched too thin, co-parenting, little personal time, loneliness, and taking care of themselves.
Although it is far from easy to make time for self-care for single moms, it is not impossible. And, some of it is about adapting to new ways of living. This will prevent parental burnout, or if you have already reached mom burnout then it will help you to recover from parental burnout. So whether you are a new mom, working mom, stay-at-home mom or work-from-home mom, then these self-care tips for single moms are for you.
Self-care tips for single moms
- Reframe Self care
Firstly, I want you to let go of any beliefs that self-care is selfish or some luxury. Self-care for anyone is part of being healthy and happy. When you are a parent, and especially a single one then self-care needs to be even more regular. You are giving out a lot of energy and you need to give back to yourself. Make self-care a part of your life and forget about societal expectations that have led people to burn out. By embracing self-care, you empower yourself to navigate the journey of single motherhood with strength, grace, and resilience.
- Do something for yourself regularly
Doing something for yourself is essential for your well-being. Make sure to dedicate some of your time to doing what you enjoy doing, no matter how small the hobby is. You don’t need to do it for any particular reason other than because you enjoy it. This could be something like going out to eat if you have a babysitter. Or it could be something you can do at home when your children are at school or napping.
- Growing vegetables
- Playing with your pet
- Coffee with a friend
- Shopping for something new for yourself
- Decorate your room
2. Find your people
I don’t mean make friends with just any other single moms. I mean make friends with people who are like you. People who share your passions, your values, and your parenting ways. People who get you and support your way of life. When we grow up in one area we tend to think the world thinks and behaves all the same. However, there are people out there who will make you feel like the way you are is normal. You just need to find them. Make the most of the internet and apps and find people you can make authentic connections with. This will help you to see that you are not alone in your journey and that there is so much to look forward to.
3. Journal your life
Being a single mom means that you can often feel lonely and isolated. It is hard not having someone to share special moments with, especially when your children do something new or cute! It can also be hard in the evenings when the children are in bed and there is no one to talk to, I know mamas I feel you. This is why journaling is your best friend. You can journal about your day, you can record special moments to always remember, and you can use it to write down what you are grateful for and what you are proud of yourself for. This can relieve any pent-up emotions, release all of your thoughts and shift your perspective to reduce stress and increase your happiness.
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4. Affirmations and quotes
Not having a significant other to be in your corner cheering for you can make everything harder. However, affirmations and quotes are going to help uplift and encourage you as a single mom. Find all of your favorite positive affirmations and quotes and write them down, print them out, heck even frame them if you want. SURROUND yourself with positive and beautiful words. Your words will start to become your inner voice and beliefs!
You may also like: 25 single-parent quotes and affirmations
5. Spend more time outside
Sometimes being outside with children is a lot easier than being cooped in indoors. Getting out into open spaces and into the fresh air can make everything feel less overwhelming. Taking care of your physical health with exercise is going to make you feel stronger and happier. Also getting vitamin D from the sun has many health benefits.
- Look for shells and crabs by the sea
- Pack a bag with essentials, food, and toys, and go find a big field
- Go for a walk and spot different birds or other wildlife
- Walk the dog and have a chat with other dog walkers
- Make a den in the forest
- Go on a butterfly hunt
- Improve the garden so you can spend more time out there as a family
- Visit family and friends with big gardens
- Fly a kite
- Pack a coffee flask and give your children obstacles to do while you enjoy your drink (for example, “run to the 1st tree, find a large rock, run to the 2nd tree and run back”)
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6. Nurture your body with nutrition
Taking care of your physical health directly impacts your mental and emotional well-being. However, I know that being a single mom you will not always be able to cook homemade meals. This is why I have some great suggestions for you to get nutritious food into your and your family’s bodies to help you feel great.
- Frozen or canned vegetables and fruit (or freeze fresh ones)
- Chop everything at once and store it in containers
- Have help-yourself evenings where you put food out on a table for everyone to serve themselves
- Let yourself and your children snack on fruits and veg when they are hungry, then have smaller main meals
- Smoothie maker
- Slow cooker
- buy precut veg/fruit and meat
- stock up on healthy zero-prep freezer meals
- Buy easy-to-snack food like raisins, nuts, dried cranberries
- Stock up on pantry essentials like couscous, rice, and quinoa
7. Give your children tasks
As a single mom, you may feel like you are expected to be a super mom! Delegating tasks to your children according to their age and abilities will benefit both you and them. This teaches them responsibility and teamwork and gives them a sense of contribution which will raise their self-esteem. They will thank you in the long run when they are able to take care of themselves as teens and adults! When your children are given more opportunities to be independent, you are going to be making your life a lot easier!
- Teach your toddler to help put the toys away
- Have a step in the bathroom so young children can wash their own hands
- Hang the coat hooks low enough for children to reach
- Older children can take out the recycling
- Have a tick sheet of tasks tailored to help your older child keep their room organized
- Have them help you prepare food (don’t worry about it not being perfect as they’ll get better every time)
- Praise their hard work and kindness every time they help and they’ll want to help more and more
You may also like: 60 Positive Parenting Phrases: Support your child’s mental health
8. Learn something new
Not everyone realizes that personal development is a part of self-care. It is in our nature to want to learn new things and develop further into our potential. You don’t need to stop learning just because you are a parent. You will feel good about yourself and the world around you if you learn more about something you love. You will also inspire your children and they will probably take an interest in whatever you are learning about too. This will raise your self-esteem and self-love.
- Learn a new language
- Exercise class (yoga, tennis, swimming)
- Take a free online course about something you’re interested in
9. Make your home environment organized and relaxing
Making the home space as relaxing and functional as possible is a must for single moms. Because you have less help around the house, needing a clear space to think and organize yourself will help you function and to feel calmer. Making it as child friendly as possible will mean you can let your children free play as much as suitable and you will be able to get on with other tasks, including self-care.
- Keep the tv at a lower volume
- Use these toddler hacks to keep them entertained while you are busy
- Declutter every room/ recycle anything you don’t use
- Play soothing music
- Use oil burners
10. Rest when you need to rest (and don’t feel parental guilt about it)
Listen to your body and don’t overdo it when you feel like you need to rest. There is nothing more important than caring for yourself. Remember you are caring for your children when you also care for yourself. You are doing the job that should be taking many people to do it. So give yourself compassion and validation and know that when you rest you are reenergizing yourself.
- Don’t feel pressured to do things because someone has asked
- Go to bed earlier whenever you can
- Ask for help if that is available to you
- Be honest about how you feel to others
- Take the pressure off of yourself to do everything
- Do things that reenergize you
- Take a lazy day
- Have the occasional takeout
- Forget about needing approval from anyone other than yourself
- Create your own expectations which are designed around your needs, your children’s needs, and your lives
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Now head over to the forum to share your thoughts, get support and connect with compassionate other single moms 🙂