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Self-Care: from a LPC Point of View

Self care is one of the most important things that we, as human beings, should do but often it seems we over look this item on our "to do list". Suniya Luthar, Ph.D. writes on an blog entry on Psychology Today (www.psychologytoday.com) "research on resilience shows that if a mother is to be an effective parent to her children, she must receive on going replenishment herself..." There is a lot of "putting-out" in motherhood and that leads to the question "who mothers mommy?". The answer is usually "no one".

Tara Cumby, owner of Towler Counseling LLC, is a GA state-licensed therapist. Her counseling center caters to all clients who are seeking psychotherapy and counseling services, to assist in overcoming life's challenges. Specialties include the treatment of trauma, addictions, behavioral counseling, and women issues (pregnancy and loss, postpartum, life changes) to men who are struggling in marriages and career choices.

We have asked Tara to write an entry for FIT4MOM Roswell Alpharetta Perimeter on the importance of self-care from her perspective as a mother with her knowledge as a licensed professional therapist.

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Being a mom is hard and challenging. I have to say it is the hardest but most rewarding jobs I have ever known.

When I became a mom a few years ago, I never really thought about how my life would change so quickly. I never realized that I would lose myself to this little person and that my whole body would change. Along with my body changing my mental thoughts changed as well.

As a therapist, I am educated and understand the mind; however, it was hard for even me to recognize all the new challenges I faced and the need for self-care. I had to learn through my journey, as a mom and a therapist. I had to take time for me.

I have worked with hundreds of moms and I hear a lot of “no way can I carve out another five minutes in my busy schedule for me.” But that is just it, you have to find the time. If not, you are working yourself too hard and headed towards a "crash". We all know, as moms, society expects us to persevere, not crash or give up.

Believe me, I understand it is hard to take time for yourself but it is a must. I get it. I've been there. I see the fear and I understand it: "if I take time for me I will look weak?" or "it is just another thing on my to do list that I can skip over for other activities". It is important we don’t look at it like that. We should look at self-care like breathing and eating.

If you can take less than five minutes a day, you are on track to becoming the best you.

Self-care can be as little as reading, mediation, prayers, taking a shower alone to sitting outside and just breathing. Self-care doesn’t have to be a massage every week or mediating hours a day. Self-care is one small thing you do for you each day.

I have a list of little self-care ideas that I put into practice each day or week for me. I start my day by getting up a few minutes before my son so I can have some quiet and reading time. Those five minutes are critical for gathering my thoughts and preparing for the day.

Here is a list of other self-care ideas:

  • taking 2-5 minute of breathing and reflecting
  • exercise (whether its a walk outside alone or a FIT4MOM class)
  • journaling
  • a shower
  • drinking coffee or hot tea alone
  • meeting a one or a group of friends
  • enjoying your favorite treat

There is no wrong way to "self-care".

Self-care can start with one small thing and it can change your life.

If you are seeking ways to "replenish yourself", but aren't sure where to start come to my Mommy Tribe Group. We're all mothers (working, stay-at-home, work-from-home). Each month we offer a new topic and discuss a way to internalize self-care. We can get "off topic" as well and discuss whatever you feel within the time frame.

We have two upcoming meetings:

Friday, May 3rd at 11:00am

Tuesday May 14th at 7:00 pm

Please give me a call to sign up at 404-580-7150.

Take charge of your wellness. Try one of the small tips listed above. If you feel a group setting is the best way for you to figure out what is going to work best for you, then come to The Mommy Tribe meeting. From one mother to another, "fill your cup".