Why do you need to make you a priority? Well, let’s talk about this.
Priorities. We all have them, right? The children, our marital relationship, family time, our career – these are the things, most likely, at the top of your list. Then there’s the dogs, the laundry, the dreaded dishes, and the list goes on (probably for a mile, but who’s counting?). The amount of things and people we are responsible for can become overwhelming, to say the least. But we need them, and they need us.
Priorities help us plan our days and determine in what order things should be done based on what’s most important in our lives. However, as busy moms, we’ve somehow lost track of the importance of taking care of our own needs.
This is truth – sad, but so true.
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Every area of our lives that we’re expected to be present in requires us to be functioning at our best. But, we can’t do that when our health & happiness is pushed down to the bottom of the list.
Please know that you’re not alone in this struggle. It’s a battle I am still working on conquering myself. When I catch myself feeling worn out, overwhelmed, and stressed from the constant pulling and tugging in my life, I quickly realize it’s because I haven’t taken any time for myself lately. I give myself lots of excuses for why I just don’t have the time. Then, (all over again) I have to remind myself why taking care of me is so important.
Just in case you need reminding too, here is my list of reasons why taking care of me first is so important…
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3 Big Reasons You Need to Make YOU a Priority
1. Your relationships depend on it.
Do you ever find yourself closed off from and easily agitated by your spouse or significant other? This could be because you are feeling overwhelmed from having so many responsibilities and not taking the time to wind down from the stress. Maybe you think he should just know what you want or need from the relationship, and he’s not delivering.
You take care of the kids, the house, and work on top of that. The truth is, he doesn’t know what you want or need unless you tell him. If you want him to show you love and attention, show it to yourself first.
If you feel better about yourself, you will be happier, and he will be drawn to your confidence and cheerfulness. Catherine makes a good point in her post, If You’re Relationship is Struggling, Take Care of Yourself, about how we sometimes self-sacrifice in order to show we’re committed in our relationship. This often backfires causing us to become frustrated. Then we express our frustration through anger towards our spouse.
Likewise, in other relationships with friends, family members or coworkers, people rely on the vibes they receive from you when determining how to act or react when around you. If you seem depressed, frustrated, or sensitive, people are more likely to avoid you.
Think about it. Would you rather be around someone who’s usually smiling and energetic or someone who looks like they’re mad at the world? Take care of your relationships by taking care of you first.
2. Your children learn by example.
We know this. However, it’s usually not front and center in our minds while we’re beating ourselves up about not getting enough done today. Every time we skip a meal and opt for a bag of potato chips or talk down to ourselves in front of the mirror, those little eyes and ears are soaking it up like a sponge.
Have you ever heard your child say something or act in a way that completely shocked you, and then quickly realized they heard it from you? (gasp!) I have had this happen to me on more than one occasion, and it’s always a big reality check. This doesn’t make us bad parents. In fact, if you catch these instances, that’s awesome! I think this teaches us to be more mindful about our own behavior.
Being mindful is key here. By consciously taking care of our own physical, mental and emotional health (with a positive attitude) we are modeling good self-love and respect. These are definitely things I want my children to have for themselves; self-love and self-respect.
If you’d like to learn more about how to have a positive influence on your children, check out this post from WebMD, How to Teach Your Child by Example. It’s filled with lots of useful information.
3. Your health depends on it.
There are many reasons we should practice self-care, but your health is the most important. Without our good health, even the smallest aspects of daily living can seem strenuous and cause us to become wearisome. Our mental, physical and emotional health all play a role in our overall well-being. They all inter-connect, and can have a major impact on your quality of life.
Mental Health – According to MentalHealth.gov, our emotional, psychological and social well-being are all tied into one. It affects how we think, feel and behave. A positive mental health state can be liberating, while a negative mental health state can cause serious problems. Some warning signs of mental health problems include being easily agitated, sleeping more than usual, and having obsessive thoughts you can’t get rid of. By doing simple things, such as getting adequate sleep, participating socially, lending a helping hand to others or just getting our hair done, can promote a positive state of mental health.
Physical Health – For most women, outer appearance is usually front and center in our minds. Every time we walk by the mirror we stop to see how we look. However, physical health seems to take a back seat in our daily routines more often than we like to admit. Doing things like walking 30 minutes a day, choosing healthier alternatives, practicing proper hygiene and taking vitamins can prevent ailments and keep our body functioning properly.
All in all, we need to take care of ourselves so we can enjoy the life we live with the people we love. I hope I have reminded you why taking care of you should be a top priority. Here are some great ideas to incorporate a little “me time” into your crazy schedule. Start making you a priority today!
Remember this – “It is not selfish to take care of you, Mama. It’s a must. Prioritize your needs, feelings, and health, and the rest will fall into place a lot easier.” ~Jillian