Self-Care for Busy Women: 10 Strategies To Make Time For You
Self-care is a critical part of living a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
For many women, it can often be difficult to make time for self-care in the midst of all the other responsibilities. Juggling multiple roles and responsibilities, from managing careers and health to caring for family and maintaining homes.
Who has time for self-care in all the chaos?
You do! Self-care is crucial for our mental health, physical health and emotional well-being! You can’t pour from an empty cup, so it’s time to prioritise self-care!
These wellness tips and self-care strategies for busy women and mums will help you make time for yourself, even if it’s just a few minutes each day!
The Importance Of Self-Care
You likely don’t really need to hear this, since we all know deep down how important it is to prioritise our own mental and physical wellness, but just in case you need a reminder!
Here are some of the reasons why self-care is essential:
- Self-care improves mental health – It helps to reduce anxiety, stress, depression and overall psychological well-being.
- Self-care improves focus – By taking care of yourself, you will be more productive, more focused and be able to concentrate on the things you want to get done!
- Self-care improves your physical health – Taking care of yourself means that you will be in better physical shape and able to take on day-to-day tasks with more energy and enthusiasm. Less stress means less susceptibility to illness too!
- Self-care helps to restore balance – It helps you to find a balance between work, family and social life so that you can enjoy all areas of your life without feeling so overwhelmed
- Self-care improves relationships – When you are feeling overwhelmed and exhausted, it can be hard to give your relationships the attention they need. Taking time for yourself will help you to be more present with your loved ones, be less resentful and nurture healthy relationships.
Self-Care For Busy Women: How To Make Time For You
Are you guilty of treating self-care as a reward for crossing items off your to-do list?
It’s time to shift your mindset and start treating self-care like the essential element of wellness that it truly is. You deserve to make your well-being a priority, not a privilege reserved for special occasions.
Don’t wait for an excuse to practice self-care—make it a daily ritual that transforms your life from the inside out.
Here are some strategies to help you make time for self-care:
1. Make Self-Care a Non-Negotiable
The first step to making time for self-care is to prioritise it as a non-negotiable part of your routine. This means scheduling self-care activities into your calendar, just like you would schedule a work meeting or appointment.
Whether it’s a yoga class, a relaxing bubble bath with that book you’ve been meaning to start, or a 10-minute walk in the sunshine, make it a non-negotiable part of your schedule.
Self-care also means nourishing your body from the inside too, so that means making a point of filling your body with food that is good for you to help you feel better physically.
2. Make A Self-Care Menu
A self-care menu, or a treat list, as I refer to mine, is a list of things that you can do for self-care that make you feel good.
What is on your list should be personal to you and be things that you actually really enjoy, no matter how big or small.
Your self-care menu should have a range of activities that can be done quickly and others that require longer so that you have options to suit any length of available time.
Some of the items on my self-care treat list include getting a message, using my favourite lavender face cream, reading, going for a walk, listening to a podcast and watching TV.
Yours might include very different items, such as painting your nails, doing a 30-minute workout or cardmaking.
3. Create a Morning Routine
A morning routine can help you start your day on the right foot and set the tone for a productive and fulfilling day. Consider incorporating some self-care activities into your morning routine, such as meditation, journaling, or a light workout.
Waking up a little earlier to give yourself this time can make a big difference in your day. You will start the day feeling more accomplished and calmer, knowing that your routine means you have a plan right from the moment you wake up.
Your morning routine does not need to be a 5 AM start with intensive exercise, an hour-long gratitude exercise and green smoothies.
Your morning routine should suit your current season of life, whether that be fitting in some stretching while the kids eat breakfast or starting your day with a thorough skincare regime.
4. Take Advantage of Your Lunch Break
If you work outside the home, your lunch break can be a great opportunity to practice self-care.
As a working woman, you deserve a moment to breathe and recharge during the day.
Swap out the monotony of desk lunches and errands for a rejuvenating walk, indulging in your favourite novel, or jamming out to your top tunes (earphones in, of course!).
Taking advantage of this midday pause can empower you with a much-needed boost of energy and renewed focus. Plus, it’s the ultimate secret weapon to sidestep the dreaded afternoon slump!
5. Use Your Commute Wisely
If you have a long commute, it can be a valuable opportunity to practice self-care.
Consider listening to an audiobook or podcast that inspires you, or take some deep breaths and use this time for meditation or reflection if you can manage it with the noises and movement around you.
You can do a mindfulness activity such as colouring, knitting or other hobbies that keep you focused in the moment, or just read a book. Take this time for yourself and resist the urge to work on your commute.
6. Simplify Your Schedule
Sometimes, the best way to make time for self-care is to simplify your schedule. Look for ways to reduce unnecessary commitments and prioritise the activities that bring you the most joy and fulfilment.
This might mean saying no to certain invitations or delegating tasks to others. But it also means looking for non-essential time sucks that you can eliminate to free up time to do things that make you feel good, like hobbies and relaxation activities.
7. Get Enough Sleep
We all hear how important sleep is and it’s true! Getting enough sleep each night plays a mammoth role in how you feel physically and mentally.
It can be the difference between waking up ready to seize the day or waking up and dreading what is ahead of you!
Aim for 8-9 hours of sleep each night to give your body and brain enough time to rest and recharge.
Making sure you are getting enough quality sleep time each night is one of the best self-care strategies of all, as it will help you stay energised and productive during the day.
If you have trouble sleeping, look into relaxation techniques or consider what is keeping you awake.
Perhaps you need to make your environment more comfortable so that it allows for a better night’s sleep. Or if you are finding your brain is struggling to shut down, consider doing a nightly journal practice to release some of the thoughts and feelings onto paper before you wind down.
8. Practice Self-Care in Small Ways
Self-care doesn’t always have to be a big, elaborate activity. Sometimes, small acts of self-care can be just as effective. Consider taking a few minutes to stretch or do some deep breathing exercises.
Or consider treating yourself to a luxury skincare item and actually using it each day, rather than saving it for a ‘special occasion’. I have a couple of different face creams that I alternative between each night and they make me feel like I am pampering myself before bed.
There are so many ways you can care for yourself in these little ways. Replace your old pillow with one that feels like you are sleeping on a cloud. Pop moisturiser on your feet before bed each night. Use positive self-care affirmations.
Check out these 100 ideas for weekend self-care to get you inspired.
9. Top Up Your Social Time
If you are extroverted, there’s a good chance that one of the most important ways to help you feel good is time spent with people you value.
Make it a priority to spend time with these friends and family members who fill your cup. Even a phone call can help give a boost to your mood.
If you are introverted and need a lot of alone time, you might be surprised that sometimes even you will feel better after quality social time. It’s important to know your limits though and make sure you don’t let it become draining or overwhelming.
10. Get Support from Others
Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for support from others. Whether it’s a friend who can help you with child care or a spouse who can take on some household tasks, getting support from others can make it easier to prioritise your own well-being.
Ask your partner to solo parent for an hour while you pop down to the salon for a fresh haircut or pedicure, or ditch the guilt if you let your kids have an extra 20 minutes of screen time if it means you can sit down with a cup of tea and read a chapter of a book.
It can even be a case of hiring out a task that you really hate and struggle to find time for, to free up that extra little bit of time in your own week. Ironing. Mowing the lawn. Getting pre-packaged healthy meals delivered. Support comes in many places.
Self-care is an essential part of intentional living, but it can be challenging to find time for it as a busy woman. By prioritising self-care, even the busiest schedule has time to fit these wellness practices! Remember, self-care is not selfish, it’s necessary for a fulfilling and happy life.
- 5-minute self-care activities
- Introvert self-care activities
- Self-care affirmations
- Self-care ideas for weekends
- Solo-date ideas
What is your favourite way to practice self-care?