Optimizing Your Self-Care Routine

Shannon M. Clark, MD
June 21, 2020
Optimizing Your Self-Care Routine

How is your self-care routine going? It may seem like a small question, but the answer could be having a big impact on your overall well-being.

Good self-care can help give you a sense of normalcy during uncertain times. It can help you relax and lower anxiety and stress levels. It can help you feel more like yourself when you’re experiencing life changes. No matter the situation, self-care is important at all times of life.

When you hear the words “self-care” it might make you think of things such as getting a massage, going to a yoga class, or getting a pedicure. While all of these are nice, they are just a small sample of the many ways that exist to practice self-care. There are several other ways to practice self-care that can all be done from the comfort of your own home!

Today I want to share with you 5 ways to support different aspects of your overall well-being, including your physical comfort, sanity, and mental health.

1. Implement ‘quiet time’.
If your toddler is transitioning out of their afternoon nap, it’s a good idea to switch that nap for quiet time. This might mean that your child learns to play quietly by themselves while you read, catch up on email, or listen to music or a podcast. This not only gives them a break from the often-frenetic pace of toddler life, it also means you might finally get to read a few pages of that book you borrowed, what, like four years ago?

Quiet time can also look like the two of your snuggling on the couch while you read your own book out loud (editing for age-appropriate content, of course).

2. Have a home spa day.
Toddlers love a good face mask, so put them to work on supplies for your home spa day. Mash up some avocado, oats, and banana and give yourself a refreshing facial right at home. Naturally, this will be a messy endeavor and some amount of the mask will probably be consumed, but just roll with it and congratulate yourself on finding a novel way to help your kid eat more fruit.

3. Write it out.
Use a blank journal or a journal that prompts you to write down your thoughts, feelings, ideas, and memories. Some people love putting pen to paper and just letting their thoughts flow. If you find journaling a bit intimidating, a guided journal can give you direction on what to write. This Thrive Guide: Self-Love Journal for Postpartum Moms is great for moms who have just had a baby!

4. Take a bath.
Delivering a baby is no small task. Taking a “sitz bath” is a great idea for postpartum moms to help ease discomfort and swelling that occurs after vaginal delivery. Baths continue to be great long after recovery from delivery, though! A bath can alleviate tired, achy muscles and can also give you a moment away from the hustle and bustle of the day. Try adding some epsom salt like this one that also has Frankincense, lavender, geranium, and other essential oils. This is a great option for postpartum baths!

5. Make yourself comfortable.
Who says that being comfortable at home can’t also look stylish? Wearing lounge clothes that make you look and feel good can do wonders for your self confidence. Try changing up your loungewear look with a fun (and extremely comfortable) printed palazzo pants. These stretchy Elsofer Women’s Lounge Pants are one of my personal favorites.

If leggings are more of your style, try these soft, high waisted leggings with tummy control. This style is great to help support the tummy after having a baby, but they are also great for running, cycling, yoga, and other workouts. Plus, they come in nearly every color you could imagine!

These are just 5 ways to practice self-care. Which one will you try this week?

For more ideas and tips on ways to practice self-care, especially if you have a small child, head to the blog. This is a great list of ways to practice self-care and incorporate your child into the process!

Shannon M. Clark, MD

Shannon M. Clark, MD

Shannon M. Clark, MD, MMS is a double board certified ObGyn and Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist, and founder of Babies After 35. In her roles as a clinician, educator and researcher at UTMB-Galveston, she focuses on the care of people with maternal and/or fetal complications of pregnancy. Dr. Clark has taken a special interest in pregnancy after the age of 35, which according to age alone, is considered a high-risk pregnancy.

Follow Shannon on TikTok @tiktokbabydoc, Facebook @babiesafter35, and Instagram @babiesafter35.

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