20 Self-Care Tips for Overwhelmed Moms

Moms, we know you’re busy and overwhelmed.

When you’re a mom, it’s easy to forget that you are your own person! You’re not just a parent; you’re also a wife, sister, daughter, friend, and so much more! And when your plate is full of family obligations, work responsibilities, and everything in between, it can be hard to see how all the pieces fit together.

But the key to being a successful mom—and getting through this stage of life with your sanity intact—is taking care of yourself first or doing self-care routines.

self care for overwhelmed moms
Photo by Paige Cody

Self-care is so important because it helps us stay healthy and happy, but it also allows you to be better a mom and woman. When you take care of yourself, you’re more likely to feel good about yourself—and when you feel good about yourself, you’ll want to take care of others in a healthier way.

The good news is that you can do self-care even when you feel like you don’t have time or energy for anything else! Here are 20 ways to practice self-care:

self care for overwhelmed moms

1. Take small breaks during the day to breathe.

To calm your mind:

  1. Try taking a moment to breathe deeply and exhale.
  2. If you’re at home, take a walk outside.
  3. If you’re at work, find the quietest place possible—like an empty conference room or bathroom stall—and sit still for two minutes.

Or if it sounds like more fun to relax with other people around (and if there are no children present), try playing some music and dancing along for a few minutes! Taking small breaks during the day will help you stay sane throughout your busy schedule as a parent.

2. Drink your coffee/tea at peace.

Have a hot drink you enjoy, made the way you like it, without rushing or feeling guilty. One of the best ways of taking care of yourself is having your favorite hot drink (coffee or tea) and not feeling bad about doing it while everyone else is playing outside in the fresh air.

3. Treat yourself.

You deserve to be pampered and treated well. A self-care tip for overwhelmed mums is to treat yourself once in a while. Find something that makes you happy and do it! It can be going into your favorite nail salon, some hair treatment, or spa day!

4. Go for a walk.

Fresh air is good for your body and mind, and walking is one of the best ways to get it into your lungs. Take a walk whenever you feel overwhelmed by motherhood, especially if you’ve been stuck inside all day with the kids and don’t feel like going outside just yet. Walking helps clear your head and can give you some much-needed time alone without any distractions from other people or obligations (like taking care of kids).

5. Pamper yourself 

Book yourself in for some pampering sessions such as manicures or pedicures, or even facials if finances allow! This is especially good if you have children to look after themselves for an hour or two while you get pampered – they’ll love it! And so will you!

6. Get some exercise.

Even if it’s just going for a walk around the block or making some yoga moves (or both!), exercise is excellent for reducing stress and improving mood, incredibly when feeling overwhelmed.

7. Try Meditation.

Set aside 10 minutes each day to sit quietly and breathe deeply; this will help calm your mind and relax your body, bring the focus back into your life, & help reduce anxiety & stress, which can cause sleepless nights

8. Have an early night/early morning.

Another way to reduce stress levels is to get plenty of sleep each night – at least 7 hours per night if possible (this isn’t always possible depending on how old your children are or whether they have an early bedtime). If this isn’t possible, then try having an early morning instead.

9. Be creative.

Do something creative like writing, painting, baking, or learning to sew (or anything else that works for you). All those little creativity bursts add up! Creativity is a great way to express yourself and make sense of what’s going on in your life. It also helps you feel more creative and less stressed out!

10. Incorporate aromatherapy

Incorporate aromatherapy into your life by burning scented candles and using essential oils in your bath or as perfume. 

11. Write down goals.

Write down your goals and remind yourself of them daily or weekly – this will give you motivation and a sense of accomplishment when you achieve them.

12. Set an alarm.

Set the alarm on your phone to remind yourself to do something for yourself each day, such as: taking a bath, reading a book, going for a walk, or getting some fresh air.

13. Eat healthy foods.

Make sure there is always healthy food in the house so that when hunger strikes, there is no need to resort to junk food! If possible, make extra portions over the weekend, so there are leftovers during the week and lunches made up in containers ready for work or school lunches if needed too!

14. Take a break from social media.

Social media can be a great way to connect with others, but it can also make us feel like we need to be perfect at everything. If you feel like your social media presence isn’t up to scratch, take some time off or delete your accounts altogether.

15. Drink plenty of water

An easy self-care idea you can try is to drink a glass of lemon water right when you wake up in the morning. It’s excellent for digestion and gives you a head start on your daily water intake.

16. Journal

Journalling is fun! It helps you divert your stress into writing. Write down five things that made your day great – this can be something as simple as seeing a rainbow in the sky or getting an unexpected compliment from someone about how you look today! You can write in your journal about how you’re feeling or what’s happening in your life.

17. Enjoy quiet time

Enjoy some quiet time with your partner, whether watching TV together, having a meal at home, or reading side by side quietly on the couch after the children have gone to bed (and before you do!).

18. Afternoon Naps

Have an afternoon nap if your kids let you sleep for an hour or two (if they don’t mind). Mothers are naturally exhausted from getting up early and being active all day long, so we need sleep too!

19. Read a book

Grab a book on your bookshelf you haven’t read yet and curl up on the couch with it for 30 minutes while your kids play happily in their room nearby (or with each other).

20. Practice Mindfulness

Be kinder toward yourself by practicing Mindfulness. Mindfulness is the act of focusing on the present moment.  

When we don’t take care of ourselves, it’s often more challenging to take care of the things and people that need us most. Whether you’re a new mom or an experienced mom, there will likely be many days when you feel stressed, tired, worried… the list goes on. But one thing is for sure: those feelings are never permanent, so please don’t forget this fact. You are stronger and more resilient than you realize!

I hope these tips have helped you see that it is possible to care for yourself and your family simultaneously. It takes time, effort, and self-discipline but seeing the rewards will make it all worthwhile!

Taryn Raine