Motherhood can be tough on our minds, bodies, and spirits, so how do you find time to relax when you have rambunctious and clingy little ones clamoring for your attention? The short answer is you’ll never find time, but you can make time for it, and it’s easier and less time-consuming than you think.
We’ve combined five quick and easy steps moms can take to enjoy a relaxation ritual with their child that they’ll be begging to do every day!
Self-care is a really big buzzword at the moment and oftentimes articles will instruct you to spend a ton of money on beauty products that promise to make you feel amazing and rejuvenated in no time. While I’m all for milk baths and cucumber eye masks, REST and peace of mind is what I genuinely crave after a long day of work and momming. Many times I’ve attempted to sneak off to my bedroom for a quick power nap or nod on the sofa while my kid watches a tv show and every time my slumber is interrupted about five minutes in. My child either needs something or wants to be with me when all I wanted was a moment alone (yes, I admitted it). The truth is a lot of primary caretakers aren’t afforded solitary opportunities often, so we perform a lot of tasks with our kids on our hips and make it work. A relaxation ritual that I swear by makes bedtime transitions for my six-year-old much easier and we’ve gotten to the point that we enjoy them so much we’ll repeat it twice a day if we’re lucky. Here’s how it works…
How to relax with an active and clingy child:
- Fill an aromatherapy diffuser with water and an essential oil fragrance that soothes and calms the senses. Lavender, Lemongrass, and neroli are my most favorite scents for relaxation.
- Fill a bottle or glass with water that you’ll need for consumption later on. Set a timer on your phone for 15-20mins in a cool, dim, room and pick a cozy spot for you and your little one to lie down.
- Stream a meditation or spa radio station while laying down. Streaming services like Pandora and Spotify offer a large variety of channels or you can opt for YouTube videos, some of which offer playtimes up to ten hours.
- Chill an eye or facial gel mask beforehand and wear it for the duration of your downtime. This will help to relieve a headache or tension you may feel.
- Deepen the bonding experience by holding your child’s hand or caressing their hair as you lie together. Not only will you connect physically, but this will also help keep your child focused and relaxed as time passes and keeps them within reach while your vision is obstructed by the gel mask.
If you’ve managed to stave off sleep despite the relaxing ritual above, it’s time to get your body moving once more, but do it with intention:
- Once the timer goes off, I recommend that you take a few sips of water to hydrate and reactivate the brain. Do this while sitting in an upright position and before standing, so your body and vision can acclimate.
- Stand up slowly and gently stretch your limbs to aid with flexibility. If possible, have your child mimic the same basic movements to keep them engaged and the atmosphere relatively calm as you prepare to continue the day.
End each mommy and child meditation session with positive affirmations for yourself and your child. This will acknowledge their efforts for participating and serves as self-acknowledgement for setting aside time to care for your own needs.
Here are a few examples of what to say:
- “Thank you for meditating with me __(child’s name). I’m so glad we got to spend quiet time together!”
- “I really enjoyed that __(child’s name). The music really helped me feel relaxed. Which was your favorite part?”
- “Would you like to do that again tomorrow __(child’s name)? We could enjoy that every day as our own special time together!”
Will this attempt to grab a moment of peace work seamlessly every time? No, definitely not (sorry momma!), but if you can commit to making this a regular habit that you share with your child, they will begin to crave it as well.