Family, Self

15 Self-Care Tips For Parents (So You Don't Overbook Yourself OR Your Kids)

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15 Self-Care Tips For Parents

Are you tired of feeling tired? Do you feel like you take care of everyone else? As a parent, you have a responsibility to take care of your children. But this doesn't mean you have to lose yourself in the process.

It's easy to overbook yourself and your child, especially when you don't know the best self-care tips to get started. If this goes on for too long, you will start to experience burnout which can lead to resentment. Maybe you didn't grow up in a family that valued taking care of yourself or you just never learned how.

If that's the case, that's alright, it's never too late to learn. All parents want their children to be happy. This actually starts with you. Children learn by what they see. When they see happy parents, they will experience happy feelings. You are also starting happy and positive habits for your child.

RELATED: How To Practice Daily Self-Care (Even When It Seems Like Life Is Way Too Hectic)

Here are 15 self-care tips for moms (and dads too!):

1. Say no. 

Stop saying "yes" when you mean "no." We know you want to be helpful. But this will only cause resentment in the long run. Make sure you stick to your "no." This is also a great way to get respect from your family.

2. Ask for alone time in the house. 

Send the kids out with your husband the next time he runs some errands. Many women benefit from some alone time in the house. Your house is your castle, so treat it that way. 

3. Spend time with your friends. 

Make sure you have a girl's night out. Go to your favorite restaurant or hangout spot. Catch up on the latest topics with your friends. This will help remind you there is more to life than family. 

4. Pick up a new hobby. 

Try a cooking class or take a knitting class. You can also invite a friend. Trying something new is a great way to set a good example for your children. It's easy to get stuck doing the same thing. This will help break the monotony. 

5. Change how you prioritize your list. 

Back before marriage, kids, home, and a job, you put yourself first. And it was easy. Stop putting yourself last on the list and start to put yourself first on the list. Many women feel guilty about this. But after they add some simple self-care to their life they begin to feel better.

6. Stop beating yourself up. 

Mistakes are part of life. We all make them and we all live through them. The best thing you can do is learn from them. Nobody is perfect. It's important to model this for your children, that way they won't feel like they have to be perfect.

7. Set a goal, but be open-minded.

Instead of setting a bunch of goals for yourself and the family, set one goal for yourself. Leave the date of completion open. For example, maybe you'd like to take a class online. Go ahead and sign up for it without making it about a grade or being competitive with the other students.

Give yourself permission to change your goal, if you need to.

8. Make exercise fun. 

If you enjoy exercise you are more likely to stick to it. Take a cardio or a spin class with some friends. They usually play good music. This helps get your mind off of everything else. Then, just enjoy moving your body.

RELATED: 10 Simple Ways To Take Care Of Yourself (If You're Having A Rough Month)

9. It's alright to ask for help.

When an adult becomes a parent, they feel a lot of pressure to know everything. Hopefully, by now you've realized that is not the case. Becoming a parent makes you realize how much you don't know.

Asking for help is a skill. It can really help you and your family. All parents go through highs and lows. Try asking your friends how they have gotten through the lows. Make sure you have a support network of family and friends.

10. It's alright to have bad emotions. 

When you have a child who may be suffering from anxiety or depression, you may feel there is no room for your emotions. Or maybe your husband is at work a lot and his job is very stressful. This may make you feel like you can't complain or feel bad. It's important to allow yourself to experience your emotions.

Whether they are anger, sadness, anxiety or happiness. Nobody is happy all the time. This will make you feel pressured.

11. Laugh. 

It's just one word. Take time out to enjoy life and laugh. You can do this with your family or alone. Watch a comedy that you know will make you laugh. Enjoy the time that you have for yourself.

12. Play. 

You're never too old to play. Go to the park and swing on the swings or run through the playground like you did when you were a kid. Ride your bike and let the wind run through your hair. Kick the ball at the beach.

Just have some fun playing. This is good for you physically and emotionally.

13. Slow down and relax. 

Carve out five minutes and do some deep breathing. This is also known as meditation. Five minutes a day is not much but over time it will make a big difference. You can always add another five minutes, try to get up to 30 minutes. Your mind and body will appreciate it.

14. Take a yoga class. 

This is great self-care. Yoga is about the mind and body connection. Add at least one yoga class a week to your schedule. There are many great classes out there, so, you shouldn't have a hard time finding one.

15. Take a bubble bath. 

This is a great way to end the day. Use your favorite soap and light a candle. Take a deep breath and just relax. Water is very calming. Make sure to clear your mind and stretch your toes.

RELATED: 21 EFFECTIVE Self-Care Practices (If You're About To Lose Your Sh*t)

Lianne Avila is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist. She has helped couples build a strong friendship, which can also help with the intimacy. For more information, please visit Lessons for Love

This article was originally published at Lessons for Love. Reprinted with permission from the author.