Build 'Em Up: Remembering You

This is our third week for the Build ‘Em Up series with Kelly’s Korner, Lil Light O’ Mine, and Life in the Green House.

Today we’re talking about how we make time for ourselves, what we do when we make time for ourselves, and how to remember ourselves in the hustle and bustle of life. This is for moms, non-moms, working women, and women who have given so much of themselves to something or someone else. 

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So rather than write a beautiful post on this topic, I thought I would put my thoughts into bullet-point form because that’s about the way they’re floating around in my head.

I’ve been a mom for almost four years now, and since becoming a mom, I’ve definitely let go of a lot of things about myself. I used to work out for almost two hours every day. I made time to hang out with friends and never forgot a birthday or forgot to return a friend’s phone call. If a new movie came out, I went to see it. My DVR wasn’t full of shows I didn’t have time to watch and I read every book I wanted to read.

I had actual hobbies! I had even gotten into yoga in the year prior to having Hudson. (I still can’t believe I did that.)

As you can probably see from my blog (in comparison to when it began in 2007), my life revolves around my kids. And that’s the way it should be in these years. I’m raising two little boys, and they constantly need me, and I need them, too.

But I know that I have to remember to nurture my mind, my spirit, and my body.

So what are the things I love to do that help me clear my mind and get that breath of fresh air that I need?

1. Reading- I find that if I am in the Word, and am doing my quiet time regularly, I am more balanced, and have better perspective. I also love to lose myself in books. I absolutely love to read, and if I make the time to do it, I’m always happier for it.

2. Movies and Television- I think I’ve said this before, but I love going to movies alone. It’s stress-free, I can “lose myself” in a movie and unwind for a couple of hours. I also love mindless television. And I absolutely love lying on the couch and watching movies that I’ve seen 100 times before. That doesn’t happen– ever– but it’s one of those things that brings back my energy.

3. Girls Nights- Back in January, my girlfriends all decided that we’d like to set up a “mandatory,” once-a-month, girls night on one Sunday night per month. I look forward to this so much! We go to dinner or go to movies, but just knowing that I will see them, have great conversation, and have a night out help me stay encouraged.

4. Blogging – Blogging has been great for me. It has given me such a great outlet and a fun sense of community. It helps me to write, but I also have set up some boundaries and filters in the last year. I love to read blogs for encouragement, too, but I also reach a point where I get overwhelmed by the encouragement and advice. Sometimes I just have to take a step back and find that my mind is clearer if I’m not reading.

5. Pure Barre and Walking– I’ve started going to Pure Barre classes recently, and truly, when I am in that class, I don’t think about anything else other than being in that class. It is fantastic. I also love to go for walks. Taking the boys or Boudreaux for a walk is always great, but it’s not very quiet. Walking alone gives me some good time to have a quiet environment or to just listen to music that I love.

6. A little pampering– Getting my hair highlighted or going for a pedicure can help me find myself again when I look in the mirror. Having someone take care of me for a little while so I can look a little more normal is always good for the soul. Or even taking the time to blow dry and curl my hair and put on some makeup. It makes me feel like a brand new woman.

There is nothing I love more in this life than being the mom to Hudson and Hayes. But I am also so very thankful for a husband who understands the need for and encourages girls nights.

I’m so thankful for in-laws who understand that Todd and I need time to ourselves and will keep our kids so we can do that. And I’m so thankful for babysitters for when my in-laws are unavailable.

I’m thankful for a hair dresser who doesn’t “shame” me when I visit him after not coming in for five months. (This is not recommended!)

And I’m thankful for sweet friends who are full of grace. They understand that family comes first and a good friend doesn’t necessarily mean a perfect friend with unlimited time.

Giving that grace to myself is another biggie. And not being a martyr is important, too. I take the time to myself when I can get it. And if I really need it, I ask for it. But if I miss a workout, don’t get my hair highlighted, don’t blog for a few days and can’t make it to a girls night, I just remember not to beat myself up over it.

And if I can’t get the time to myself, I stop and remember that this time with my rowdy, sweet boys is so special and it does feed my soul.

What about you? What are the ways that you nurture your spirit? I’d love your tips!
So link up with us or leave a comment.

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  1. says

    Thanks for hosting this wonderful series! I always enjoy my alone time after everyone in my house is asleep and it is quiet. This is truly something I have come to need and want each day. Making time for myself and taking care of myself is always a work in progress, that’s for sure.

  2. says

    This is such a great post! So many women tend to forget about their own identity after having kids. My husband, like yours, is a great support and encourages me to take care of me as well as our family. I enjoy shopping, my hair appointments, girls nights, and trying new things. I recently started beginner tap dance classes. It keeps me ME and therefore, makes me a much happier Mom and wife.

  3. Cathy C. says

    Thank you for this encouraging post. I feel so selfish taking time for myself. This is a great reminder of why it is so important.

  4. Maria says

    I can relate to all of the above and I only have 1 toddler boy but work full time out of the house. I turned 35 in Dec and made a commitment to myself. Since then I’ve found 3x a week lost weeks to workout, lost 19lbs, read more and just enjoyed mysel more. It needed to be done!

  5. K says

    I can also relate to your post. During my lunch break at work, I try to take an hour long walk. There is a nice walking path near my office, and it’s refreshing to be outdoors to clear my mind. I’m not sure how long it will last, though, since the weather is starting to heat up. I’m trying out new hobbies – I’m addicted to groupon and livingsocial which I think is great to try new activities. This past Saturday, I attended a photo workshop which I really enjoyed – and now I’d like to take more classes. Other than that, I love watching movies and reading books. Although reading these days has its challenges – I’m reading a really good book right now but by the time my son goes to bed, I’m so exhausted, I end up falling asleep after reading a few pages. But I wouldn’t change it for the world.

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