How to Take Care of Yourself and Put Yourself First

How to Help Yourself

I have recently been thinking of the Audrey Hepburn quote, “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.”

I had never felt the truth of this statement as much as I have now before I became a mom. I didn’t fully understand selfless, unconditional love, or the fierce devotion I’d have to wanting to help and protect my daughter as much as possible.

At the same time, I also never understood how vital it is to take care of myself, or that the ONLY way to take care of others is by taking care of myself first.

Becoming a mother has taught me what a great helper I am, and it’s also forced me to learn to help myself by taking simple, doable, and consistent actions that make a big difference in my quality of life.

By learning to help myself, and take great care of myself, I am better able to show up in the world as the wife, woman, and mother that I most want to be.

I am currently facing some new stressors in my life. My grandmother, who I am extremely close with had to have emergency surgery and has been in the hospital for almost two weeks. My 90 year old grandfather has been alone in their home, and needs help going back and forth to visit my grandma. I’ve been spending most days at the hospital with them, while also trying to juggle motherhood and all of my other responsibilities, and I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t stressful.

The only thing that’s keeping me sane through this ordeal is my commitment to self care; my dedication to helping myself first.

This is what helping myself first looks like these days:

  • Practicing yoga every morning
  • Spending a little time outdoors each day
  • Eating a healthy breakfast
  • Bringing my own lunch to the hospital
  • Using essential oils to ground me throughout the day whenever I need it
  • Taking a daily break to go for a walk
  • Listening to good music and inspiring podcasts on my drives to and from the hospital
  • Putting away my phone and being fully present with my husband and daughter each night
  • Crying to my husband or a friend whenever I’m feeling particularly burdened
  • Relaxing and reading before bed every night
  • Asking for help when I need it

These activities may seem trivial, and maybe doing one of them by itself wouldn’t have as big of an impact. But the culmination of taking these small moments to take care of myself daily adds up to my feeling grounded, safe, and supported, even during uncertain times.

It is only from this place of being cared for, that I am able to help others. By filling myself up first, I can show up as the patient and loving mother that I most want to be. I can help and support my grandparents as they age. I can be a devoted wife, and a good friend. I can hold more space for my coaching clients and be of greater service to them. I can write meaningful blog posts. I can show up to the world ready to give and ready to help…. But ONLY if I am helping myself first.

This is true for all of us. I would love for you to take some time this week to think about the ways in which you are helping others, and also the ways in which you are helping yourself. Notice if this give and take feels balanced to you. We are here in this world to help one another, but we simply cannot do that to the best of our ability if we are not first helping ourselves.

What can you do to help yourself today?

Please share in the comments below, or reply to this email to speak to me personally!

Take care and have a beautiful week.

Be well,
Ambar

 

P.S. If you are someone who struggles with making self care a priority, I would love to help! I am getting ready to start working with new coaching clients and am offering a free Self Care Strategy Session to anyone who is interested in seeing how life coaching works. I know that this time of year can get a little stressful, and I would love to support you in putting yourself first so that you can have an easeful and peaceful holiday season. Simply send an email to ambar@mamabirdwellnest.com if you would like to claim your free session and we will get it scheduled right away!

 

Let’s Celebrate Spring!

Celebrate Spring

Springtime is upon us! The temperatures aren’t exactly cooperating yet here in NJ, but the days are getting longer, the sunshine is getting brighter, and there is a new energy in the air. I have been really into rituals lately, so I wanted to share some simple rituals that you can do to celebrate and welcome spring into  your life.

This past week we celebrated the spring equinox, which is the one day in which the light of day and the dark of night are equal. This makes this the perfect time to seek out balance in our lives. Spring is also a time of rebirth and renewal. Grass starts getting greener, new leaves and flowers start to bloom, birds start to migrate back north, and animals come out of hibernation. The same is true for us. Spring affords us an opportunity to come back to life with fresh new energy. It is a time for creation.

My favorite springtime ritual is to gather some fresh flowers, light a candle, and take time to journal about what I want to welcome into the new season. I like to think about what parts of my life are out of balance, and how I can get them more in sync. I also like to make plans for creative projects that I want to bring out into the world, and also fun activities that I want to do with my family.

Balance is something that is really important to me right now. Since leaving my full time job a few months ago, I’ve been striving to find the ideal balance between work/play/family time. I’ve recently been working a bit more and getting into more of a structured routine, and that’s feeling really good for me right now. I tend to be very easy going and relaxed by nature, so having more structure and routine helps to balance me out. Balance is such an individual thing, and what’s right for one person may be completely wrong for another. The important thing is to notice what feels good to you and tune into your own unique energy.

Seek out balance in all areas of your life. Take a look at how you are dividing your time. Are you happy with what you are devoting yourself to? What percentage of your time is being spent with your family? By yourself? With your partner? With your friends? Notice if there are any shifts that you need to make in order to find a better balance.

Are your days very busy? Maybe you need more time to rest. Or maybe you are resting a lot and could use a little more activity and motivation.

What does your health look like? Is your eating balanced? Are you being as active as you would like to be? What activities are you doing to support a healthy lifestyle? Notice if there are any shifts that need to be made in this area.

Are you taking good care of yourself? Do you take time to do the things that light you up and make you feel happy and fulfilled? Do you have some dedicated time that is just for you? This is so important, and is often missed.

Take some time to think about your answers to these questions and figure out simple changes you can start to make to shift yourself into better balance this season.

Here are some other ideas for celebrating early spring:

  • Buy fresh flowers and display flower arrangements throughout your home
  • Plant fresh herbs or flower seeds in a pot and place on a sunny windowsill
  • Spend more time outside and notice all of nature’s bounty beginning to grow
  • Do something creative: draw, color, sing, and dance
  • Add some spring décor to your home (we like having seasonal wreaths on our front door, and make a little ritual out of changing them on the first weekend of each season)
  • Diffuse floral essential oils throughout your house
  • Do some spring cleaning and declutter your home
  • Spring clean your garden by removing all of the dead leaves and creating space for the new blooms that are on their way
  • Spring clean your life by tying up any loose ends, letting go of anything that is no longer serving you, and creating space for great new things to enter your world

How will you be welcoming spring into your life? Let me know in the comments below!

Have a happy week!

Be well,
Ambar