Prioritizing self care can be hard. Especially when raising a family. It is even harder when your partner doesn’t understand your needs. Sometimes, women feel like they shouldn’t have needs/wants - simply because they stay home. I’ve heard many women talk about the guilt attached with spending money when they don’t actually make money as a stay at home mom.
So today, I am breaking down how to achieve self care goals as a team.
Learn who you are and why you feel like your self care goals will be proactive and help you feel better, get healthier and sustain you in your current season. Self care can be totally misguided and used only as an excuse to consume (spend $$) or escape. Which isn’t really beneficial long term. So check your motives - are you being proactive or reactive in your choices? Will these decisions help you right now and in your future? An example of low level self care is drinking wine after a long day. It is temporary, it might make you feel good in the moment but it will not have a positive long term effect. Instead, proactively thinking and reviewing your day “why was I so stressed today? Was I extra grumpy because my blood sugar was low from not eating enough? How can I set myself up for success tomorrow/this week?”. Great, long lasting self care examples are increasing your water intake, getting yourself ready, planning your meals out, moving your body etc.
Make a plan in advance and clearly communicate- Scheduling in advance is key as well as proper communication. Using a joint calendar has been hugely beneficial to the function of our family. We are able to sit down, organize our needs and wants for the week or the month and then schedule it knowing that we have support and someone to uphold the household and family responsibilities while we are focusing on self care.
Support one another in their efforts - Part of marriage is accepting that your partner is different from you. This means that their needs might be different too as well as their desires. You don’t have to agree on everything. So while my husband really has no interest in my desire to get botox in my forehead, he still supports that it makes ME feel good, that I have created a budget for it and saved up for it. It is almost irrelevant if the other party agrees with your methods (as long as you aren’t self harming obviously), but what matters is that we are supporting one anothers choices in what makes THEM feel good, complete, happy, fit, healthy, beautiful etc.
Create a budget for one another - Everyone needs resources to dedicate to taking care of themselves. It is not selfish to create a budget for yourself. But, it makes it even more special when you communicate to your partner, and they help make it a priority! When you encourage your partner by supporting their self care goals financially - it also makes it feel super special like it is a treat as well!
Encourage + Notice - It is hard to affect change when you are exhausted and any little change can feel like a big deal. Working out while you have kids is hard - there is nothing worse than having a sore body and still having to pick kids up and care for them. Or waking up before the kids wake up in order to have some more time for yourself takes sacrificing some of your sleep. So when your partner makes healthy choices for themself - make sure you notice. When your husband is going to the gym regularly - give his bicep a little squeeze…When your wife gets up early and gets herself ready (even when she is only staying at home) - tell her she looks beautiful. Notice the efforts and encourage one another to keep doing what makes them feel good. It will create a snowball effect in their efforts and also create a joy and excitement in your marriage.