Parenting is one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll ever have in your life. There’s nothing like watching your kids grow up and being able to guide them along the way. But, ask any parent and they’ll likely tell you — it’s also exhausting, demanding, and often overwhelming.
As a parent, regularly practicing self-care is essential. You can’t pour from an empty cup, and you have to take care of yourself if you want to properly care for your family.
But, self-care doesn’t always have to be a solo activity. Not only is it crucial to prioritize self-care for your own well-being, but teaching your children how to care for themselves can also be an important life lesson they’ll carry with them into adulthood. Engaging in self-care activities together can be fun, and it can also foster a deeper connection between you and your kids, all while teaching them self-love and the importance of mental and physical wellness.
Consider everyone’s interests
If you’re not sure how to get your children involved in self-care habits, consider some of the things they already enjoy and incorporate wellness practices into their routine. For example, most kids like spending time outside, and that can actually be a great way to boost your mental and physical health. Nature is the ultimate healer. Spending just a few minutes outside each day can help to:
- Reduce stress
- Improve mood
- Increase energy
- Promote better sleep
Plus, it encourages physical activity, which is another form of self-care. If you have an active child, consider going on a hike together or playing a game outside. You can share some of the benefits of staying active and spending time outdoors with your kids while having a lot of fun doing it.
Do you have a child who likes to write? Journaling is another great form of self-care that can improve mental health. It can help with anxiety and teach your kids to be more mindful. Do your kids like music? Playing an instrument reduces stress while promoting focus and concentration. Or, turn on their favorite movie and have a dance party together in the living room. You’ll get in some great exercise while boosting your mental health, too!
You don’t have to look far to incorporate your kids’ interests into self-care habits. In doing so, you might even pick up some new habits of your own!
Try something new
While incorporating self-care practices naturally is a good way to get started with your kids, don’t be afraid to include more intentional practices into their lives. Meditation is a powerful example. It teaches your kids to slow down and focus on how they’re feeling. It also teaches them to stay in the present, rather than letting anxious thoughts drag them into the past or future. Some of the additional benefits of meditation include reduced stress, better sleep, and improved focus — something kids and adults alike need!
Meditation has been stereotyped too often over the years. You don’t have to sit a certain way or make specific sounds while doing it. Rather, it’s about closing your eyes and focusing on your breath. If you and your kids want to try meditating together, consider using one of the many guided meditation apps available, or simply listening to calm music while you relax and shift your focus together.
Even a few minutes of meditation each day can provide your family with incredible benefits. You might notice that your kids are calmer and more focused, and that can lead to improved relationships and better performances in school.
Focus on a self-care routine that is doable
Self-care shouldn’t be an occasional thing. Your self-care practices should become a part of your daily routine. When you set an example of how to practice self-care each day, your kids are more likely to follow your lead. By filling your day with small moments of self-care, you’re more likely to stick with the healthy habits that make you feel good.
Establishing a daily skincare routine is a wonderful way to take care of your physical health, give yourself a bit of pampering, and have fun with your kids. You can pretend you’re going to the spa together every evening while enjoying the benefits of regular skincare like:
- Stress reduction
- Feeling more in touch with yourself
- Improving your skin health
- Boosting the elasticity of your skin
- Protecting your skin from the elements
Another way to make a small moment a part of your self-care routine is to have a cup of coffee (or tea or hot chocolate for your kids!) every morning. Taking a few minutes to start your day with a warm drink and mindful conversation can improve your connection with your kids and help to start everyone’s day on the right foot. It’s a quick and easy way to feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle anything.
As you can see, practicing self-care with your kids doesn’t have to be complicated. You know your children better than anyone, and you know what kind of routine you can create to benefit your family. Start incorporating some of these practices and you’ll teach your kids the power of self-love from a young age.