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Happy Valentine’s Day: What will you do to love yourself today?

Happy Valentine’s Day to you all!

I hope you are all able to take some time out today to have to yourselves.
 
After a very eventful night last night with lots of musical beds, my day started with my eldest, Sia, waking me up by climbing on top of me for a cuddle and then fidgeting and wriggling around to try and get comfortable. I tried to cling on to being asleep for as long as possible but then Sia started talking and then Xanthe woke up and they started giggling at each other and it was game over – my day had begun!!!! But I felt sooooo so tired. I knew that today was going to be a write off unless I got some more sleep.
 
Here’s the thing: I am fully aware of the importance of prioritising my own needs and it is something that I talk about ALL THE TIME. It is something I tell my clients regularly!
 
I KNOW that I will make myself ill unless I look after myself and take regular breaks. But DESPITE knowing all of this I have been caught out recently because we have had some big life events happening in our family. Events which have demanded a lot more of my energy. Which means, of course, that I have become depleted. But what I didn’t do (and this is a lesson for me) is balance those events out with even MORE time out to rest and recharge.
 
Parenting requires a HUGE amount of mental and physical energy as it is. Add to that other life events such as moving house and a family bereavement (to name two of the many things that have been happening recently for us) and suddenly your energy reserves become dangerously low.
 
As a result of not taking into account that I needed to factor in even more rest time, not having enough sleep and doing too much, I now have labyrinthitis which is an inner ear infection – so every time I get up I feel dizzy. I have had it several times before and the only thing that gets rid of it is LOTS of rest and sleep. So now I am forced to listen to my body, forced to slow down because otherwise this does not go away and it’s horrible. Our bodies are amazing at telling us when we need to slow down or stop but we are very practiced at ignoring the messages until it is too late! For example:
  • How many times have you ignored the signs that you need more sleep, powered yourself with caffeine and cracked on with your day?
  • How many times have you ignored your bladder for far too long and carried on with whatever you are doing until you absolutely had to go for a wee?
  • How many times have you desperately needed a break but found it too difficult to ask those around you for support? 
If you answered yes to any of these questions then BRILLIANT because this means you now have the AWARENESS that you are practiced at ignoring the messages your body gives you – and you are not alone!
 
Many of us run around looking after everyone around us, unconsciously ignoring our own needs until we crash and burn. Once you become aware of this, THEN you can choose to do things differently! So going forward, I will make sure I factor in much more rest time in my day to day life, especially during the more challenging times.

WHAT WILL YOU DO DIFFERENTLY TODAY?

So today is Valentine’s Day – the day of love. If you can do just ONE thing today to love and care for yourself what will that be?
 
It can be as simple as going for a walk around the block, or it can be booking yourself in for a spa day!
 
So the one thing I am choosing to do today for myself is to go back to bed, while Sia is at nursery and Xanthe is with our nanny, and sleep for a few hours!
 
What are you going to choose to do for yourself today?
 
Zoë
xxxx

***For more information on self-care tips, tools and strategies come and join us in The Mother Side group – a growing global community and a safe space for all mums and mums-to-be to seek support from other mums and perinatal and parenting specialists: https://www.facebook.com/groups/themotherside/ ***

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