Self-care! This seems to be the buzz word at the moment, but what does it really mean.
When it comes to having a child with ADHD, self-care commonly becomes a term where we are asking what it truly means and then asking when we have time to actually do it.
Self-care in a nutshell is just looking after you! However, when you are juggling what feels like a million appointments, advocating for your children with the school to ensure they are supported, juggling work, getting dinner sorted, getting the washing done, ensuring the house is cleaned or just making sure the fight between the children doesn’t end with one of them killing each other, it can become a bit of a chore.
Recently, my self-care has been lacking. My life has felt somewhat out of control and I haven’t been reaching the goals that I set myself so I know that needed to change, and drastically.
Now, I am not talking about running off and getting weekly facials or massages anytime soon, although that would be wonderful, I have no time for that. I am talking about changing the way you think.
Here are my tips to 7 ways you can improve your self-care with little time:
- Meditate – If you work with me or know anything about me and the business you will hear me talk about meditation a lot. Meditation can be any time you have available, even as much as 2 minutes can be used for meditating. Take the time to take a few deep breaths and calm yourself. This can even be done at the next red light that you stop at. Close your eyes for a second and take a few deep breaths. You have now meditated for a second. It makes all the difference.
- Go for a mindful walk – Go for a walk for 5 – 10 minutes if time is short and take note of everything around you. Take in the smells, sounds, how the air feels and how everything looks.
- Visualise – Keep in mind how you want your life to be and work towards that. Visualising things can be so powerful. All you need to do is have a picture in your mind of what you want or how things need to be and keep that focus. Work out a plan to get you to that point and then continue to work towards that. You may want a blissful household, what does that mean for you? How do you see what working? Once you have worked that out, what do you need to get there? Take the time to think about this.
- 5 minutes before sleep – the 5 minutes before you fall asleep is the most powerful 5 minutes of the day! Take this time to do your visualisation of what you want. Maybe you have an appointment the next day that you are worried about. Use this time to visualise how you would like this appointment to go and then pop off to sleep. You will feel much better about this appointment when you wake up.
- Focus on the good not the bad – when it comes to having a child with ADHD we can get caught up with what isn’t working. We receive a constant barrage of what our child is doing wrong and this can really start getting us down and feeling a sense of hopelessness. Take the time to focus on the good stuff and make the bad stuff less important. This will not only change the focus for you but you will actually start seeing a change in other people as well. It is truly amazing when you do this. Just try it.
- Take a bath – when the kids are in bed take 30 minutes to yourself, put some candles in the bathroom, diffuse some oils and have a good soak. You can also use this time to meditate.
- Mirror talk – look at yourself in the mirror when you are brushing your teeth in the morning and talk to yourself positively. My favourite thing to say is “I am worthy” After years of me believing that I am not worthy, it makes a massive difference to do this each morning. It is great for the self-confidence.
Even if you only manage one of these 7 things to do each day then you will make a huge difference in looking after yourself. As parents we get so busy doing everything for everyone else that it is imperative that you look after yourself. If you don’t look after you, who will? So, remember, that next red light you stop at, close your eyes and take 3 deep breaths. You will thank yourself for it later.
If you want to talk to Paula about how to become a more mindful and calmer parent, then contact us here to see how we can help.
Paula is an ADHD coach, parent advocate and author who is passionate about helping parents with children living with ADHD and changing society’s opinion on ADHD. Paula is available for speaking events also.
If you want more information on how to work with your ADHD child feel free to contact Paula at firstname.lastname@example.org