Motherhood is hard work which is why I’m sharing 10 ways to find rest and rejuvenation for mothers. Spending a few minutes to care for yourself can impact the whole family.
And don’t let the title fool you either! You may not be a mom but I’m sure you could use a few pickups to recharge yourself as well with these practical & easy ways to care for yourself so you can be the best for your family!
I have been tired and worn out the last few weeks. Taking care of my family is hard work and sometimes requires more energy than I am able to give.
There is a constant pile of clothes to wash, fold and put away.
The dishes need to be washed and placed in the cabinets.
Dinner will not cook itself, nor will the pantry re-stock on its own.
The children won’t learn to treat each other kindly without my teaching.
The list could go on and on, replacing one chore or task for another, and if you don’t stop and spend some time taking care of yourself, how can you possibly keep caring for your family as well?
At some point or another, we as mothers will experience some sort of burnout.
We will reach the end of our ropes.
We will collapse in the chair and not be able to get up. We snap and speak to our kids disrespectfully or say something we may regret to our husbands.
I’ve been there and done that and the only thing that it makes me feel is worse, not better.
I don’t want to be a wife and mother who is constantly short-tempered and exhausted.
I want to be a blessing to my family, a peaceful and loving presence in my home. But if I don’t take the time to care for my needs, then my family will be the first to experience those negative words or actions.
Today let’s look at some super simple strategies we can employ on a regular basis to fill our cups.
10 Ways for Mothers to Recharge and Refresh
1. Read God’s Word
While this is the obvious choice, sometimes it’s not our first choice.
Sometimes our eyelids are so heavy that the minute we start to read a passage in Scripture, sleep takes over. This is why I have invested in a few resources that I keep stocked in my Bible book basket.
Some good, “get in the Word quick” resources are:
- current She Reads Truth reading plan (available for free online or on the app)
- Scripture Graces journal
- Journaling Bible
- Write the Word journals
- a short devotional (this massive list contains my favorite quiet time resources)
Now before you start to question me let me say that yes, I absolutely think it should be a priority to be in God’s Word every day, but sometimes you just need a quick pick me up or an encouraging passage.
That’s why devotional books fit the bill; Short, concise, to the point, encouraging and refreshing.
2. Phone Home
Sometimes nothing is more encouraging then calling your own mom (depending on your relationship) when things feel hard.
You can cry, share your frustrations and know that she has been through it too.
Now I realize not everyone has a relationship with their mothers to where they would be comfortable doing this, or perhaps your own mother is no longer living.
Consider a trusted aunt, family member or an older woman from your church.
Someone who is wise and has gone through the battle and came out on the other side.
Someone who you feel safe sharing with and who has the wisdom to offer you insight and encouragement.
Don’t think that prayer has to be limited to certain times during the day when you have your prayer journal in front of you.
God wants to be in fellowship with you throughout your entire day!
He is always with us, He always hears our prayers and in His own unique way, He answers them.
Several times during my day I am constantly taking a short mommy time out seeking Him with short prayers like, “Jesus I need help!” or “Lord please give me patience and soften my heart to love this child as you do.”
3. Do What You Love
Spend a few minutes every day doing something you love whether that be reading, writing, sewing, cooking or whatever it is that you enjoy doing.
Sometimes just spending 5 to 10 minutes doing an activity that we enjoy can completely refresh us and give us a new perspective on the day.
4. Get Outside
Sit in the sun, breathe in the fresh air, walk barefoot in the grass, play in the snow with the kids… it doesn’t matter just get outside.
Make it a priority to get outside every day despite the weather.
I have three children so depending on the weather it can be a real hassle to get outside on a daily basis (trying to get hats, gloves, and coats on toddlers is an Olympic event!) B U T I do try and make the effort.
It makes us all feel so much better, plus the kids sleep better too which is always an added bonus in my opinion!
5. Ask for Help
Sometimes you just need a little help and you shouldn’t be ashamed to admit it.
If it’s in your budget, hire a babysitter so you can get out of the house alone once in a while. Or swap childcare with another mom taking turns, one day you go out while she watches the kids or vice versa.
If you have family living nearby take advantage of fostering the relationship between grandparent and grandchild.
Or arrange a time with your husband where he can come home early, go in to work late, or take the kids for a few hours on the weekend so you can do something for yourself (or just run to the grocery store by yourself because even that can feel like a vacation!)
We were never meant to leave in isolation yet out current society is more alone and isolated than ever before.
6. Connect with a Friend
When is the last time you actually sat down and visited with a friend?
I’m not talking about a quick conversation with a girlfriend while passing each other in the hall on your way out of church or at after-school pickup.
I’m talking about some set-aside, intentional time to sit down (either in person or on the phone) and visit with one another.
Even if it takes weeks to plan a time where both of you are free, make it a priority, for both of you benefits.
Don’t take yourself so seriously.
Laugh with your kids and spouse.
Laugh when you do something so absent-minded (like I did this morning when I accidentally through the whole bowl of chopped onion in the trash can thinking it was my trash bowl… yeah it took me a few moments to be able to laugh but it made the whole situation a bit better!) 😂
I don’t know about you but when my kids chuckle and giggle it always improves my mood, especially when I laugh right along with them!
8. Reflect on the Past
Feeling a little down on yourself?
Take a few minutes and reflect on the past.
Look through some old photo albums. I don’t know about yours by my kids LOVE flipping through our yearly photo books.
Pull out the baby book or read through your child’s memory journal.
I always love doing these activities and remembering good times can really have a positive impact on your day.
9. Take a Nap
You know the old advice, “Sleep when the baby sleeps!” Ha!
I’ll be the first one to admit that I am not a nap person. If I fall asleep during the day I actually feel worse then I did before.
But sometimes our bodies just need a little rest.
Whether it be a cat nap, a full get-back-into-bed-and-get-under-the-covers nap, or just vegging out in front of the TV while your kids take a rest, can make all the world of difference for your energy levels.
My afternoon tea ritual is still going strong even after my youngest has dropped his nap!
Along these lines, it’s also OK to sleep in every once in a while too. Now if you have little ones, then you and your husband will need to create a plan so he can get up with the kids, and vice versa. In our family, I take Saturday mornings, while my husband gets Sunday mornings. It’s a win-win.
Do what works best for your family’s schedule and routine.
10. Indulge in a Treat
Treat yourself with your favorite sweet treat.
It could be a latte with extra whipped cream, a professional manicure or pedicure, a favorite magazine or a savory, crunchy bite if sweets aren’t your thing (I will always pick salt over sugar any day, weird I know!)
It doesn’t have to be much, and it certainly doesn’t have to be every day but an occasional indulgence just for “mom” can really go a long way to help re-motivate, refresh and re-energize yourself.
What is your favorite way to recharge and refresh yourself when you are feeling tired, weary or worn out?
*updated from the archives. Originally posted in May 2014