By: LUMO Leaders
Hi all, Kristin here.
I spend a lot of time talking to moms about self-care. It’s one of the most important things we focus on in client sessions, because having a solid wellbeing foundation is what gives us access to power, in all areas of our lives.
We here at LUMO call it Trickle-down Mom-onomics, also known as the belief that when mom’s proverbial cup is full, it overflows onto everyone she touches. Her kids, her partner, her coworkers – everyone benefits when a mother’s wellbeing is solid.
While I know this – both intellectually and through my own personal experiences – it seems to be one of those super fun lessons I get to keep on learning, over and over again. (YAY!)
Like many of us, I’ve struggled with self-care over the course of this (ongoing) pandemic. I couldn’t do any of the things I was used to doing to meet my social and emotional needs. There was no going to yoga, going out to dinner with friends, no being in community spaces with others. It was highly frustrating.
On the flip side of things, suddenly I was parenting way more than I was used to. (See: all the time.) When virtual schooling began in the fall of 2020, the constant need for snacks/attention/Zoom help nearly broke me. It reminded me of my past life in corporate event management, where I was “on” for 18 hours a day and responsible for meeting the needs of the masses. The difference between pandemic parenting and corporate events was that the events had an end in sight.
What do you get when you take a working mom, subtract all her self-care structures, and add full time child-rearing plus a global pandemic?
In desperation, I started taking my dog on longer and longer walks; it was the only way I could safely escape the four walls of my house. I had so many thoughts all blocked up in my head that over time, I started musing out loud. Surprisingly, it really helped. Over time my walks became a prayer and a conversation and a journal entry, all in one. Hearing myself out loud helped me realize what I was thinking and helped to stop the most toxic thoughts in their tracks. But best of all, it gave me what I was missing – a feeling of being connected to myself. Of understanding myself. In the absence of quiet in my living space, I couldn’t hear myself think. And now all I was doing was hearing myself think!
I’m sharing this story because self-care is a VERY hot topic in the zeitgeist these days, with brands and influencers all promoting their most life-altering facial or yoga practice or float session in the dark in a self contained room (this continues to both fascinate me and freak me out, in equal measure). The global wellness industry is worth $4 trillion dollars. I have worked with moms who have tried journaling, tapping, acupuncture, therapy, meditation, toilet seat slamming, axe throwing – you name it, all in service of their wellbeing.
Please hear this: taking care of ourselves does NOT require excessive amounts of time or money. Self-care moments can be as simple as taking a deep breath, patting yourself on the back for a job well done, or being ok with not being ok.
If you haven’t figured out your own secret sauce yet, don’t lose hope. You will get it. It takes practice and curiosity to figure out what works best for you. The most important thing to remember is that self-care is about encountering ourselves. We are dynamic, energetic beings who are constantly shifting and changing. Our needs are constantly shifting and changing. The universal experience we’re after – of feeling good in our skin, of feeling enough – comes when we practice meeting ourselves where we are every single day.
Practicing what we preach,
Kristin and the LUMO team
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