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Be Your Best Self For Your Family
The Best Gift For Your Family Is Your Best Self

You’ve heard how important self-care is and have probably even reminded yourself or a stressed friend of this necessity at one point or another in your parenting. But what are you supposed to do in unprecedented times? You are told to practice social distancing, shelter in place, and feel so uncertain of what the future holds that you may panic and kick into survival mode. How can you embrace the beautiful chaos as a mom during times like this?

The following is an excerpt from my book, Embrace the Beautiful Chaos of Motherhood:

“You deserve to be on your to-do list. Your family is counting on you, and the only way to be your best for them is to take care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. It’s OK to take some time from your day and focus on yourself. You will be a better mom for it. You will be a better wife for it. You will be a better person for it. Your job is too important to only do halfway. It’s not enough to be there, merely going through the motions. You need to be there and really embrace yourself and your family in each moment. Commit to yourself a small portion of time each day to take care of your needs. It’s not counterproductive. If you spend an hour each day, that’s less than 5 percent of your day spent doing something for yourself. It can include anything that makes you feel good, from reading, dancing, or painting to pampering yourself—anything that you truly enjoy doing. You will get way more done from a place of feeling good and experiencing well-being than you ever could from having an empty cup.

Let’s run through a scenario together. It’s a Tuesday evening; you’re making dinner. Everyone has already expressed feeling hungry but is excited about the tacos you’re preparing. Your husband is away for the week, and you’re holding down the fort the best you can. Your adorable four-year-old is prancing around the kitchen island, loudly singing the same line from the My Little Pony theme song over and over. There are two ways this could potentially go down:

Option 1. Mom has a full cup (and I don’t mean a margarita!).

You took time earlier in the day to do something for yourself. You feel balanced and, at this moment, you have an easier time feeling the joy of your daughter freely dancing and singing in the kitchen. It’s easier for you to notice the beauty, the sparkle in her eyes as she peeks at you as she rounds the island for the thirty-fourth time. You not only see the magic of this moment but soak it up and cherish it. You know from your older kids that this phase flies by and soon will just be a memory. 

Option 2. Mom’s got an empty cup.

Things have been crazy. You didn’t have a chance to do anything that you wanted today. You still have so much to do and are feeling behind. You’re more easily annoyed by the song and become resentful that you’re cooking. You end up missing all of the goodness noted above. You might get pushed to the point of no return when you reprimand your daughter, saying something you don’t really mean (that she may never know or believe that you don’t mean). In your irritation, you might send a message to her that you don’t like being around her if she is happy or enjoying herself, possibly guiding her indirectly to dull her beautiful sparkle. 


Be Your Best Self For your Family

I didn’t intentionally make the second scenario as dramatic as possible, but I did want to point out the possible repercussions. Some of the things that have stuck with me the most are simple scenarios from my childhood when someone reacted and said something that indirectly affected me. No one intentionally said or did anything to dull my sparkle, but there were moments that led to that result. As an adult, I now understand that those comments were never about me. They were merely a reaction of someone who wasn’t devoting time to themselves and who’d had a long, hard day and didn’t have a lot of patience for the four-year-old in the room. The four-year-old me didn’t always understand that, though. 

Self-care has been a strong foundation for my days as a parent, and I’m so grateful I found it when I did. There were many days when I was operating from an empty cup. I know that I was doing the best I could with what I was working with at that time in my life, but I’m very thankful to be in a better place now, and it just keeps getting better. 

In order to fully embrace the beautiful chaos of motherhood, we need to take care of ourselves. Our families will not only understand and make out OK, but they will be much better off when we are in a good place. You can be a better version of yourself when you are rested and taken care of. When you allow yourself to be a part of your daily routine, taking time to focus on yourself, you fill your cup. This will probably look a little different each day, and that’s OK. Remember, it’s not what you’re doing that matters as much as the satisfaction it brings to you. Explore this idea of putting yourself back as a top priority and what it looks like for you by answering the following questions: 

What do I wish I had more time to do?

What would I like to do for myself in the following areas? 







Was there a time that I was on my to-do list? What did I do? How did I feel? Do I miss that?

How do I feel when I am not on my to-do list consistently?


Now is your time to commit to taking back that first priority place for yourself. Give yourself permission for self-care. Place your hand over your heart and recite this aloud as many times as necessary: 

I, ____________________________________(your name), give myself permission to be number one on my to-do list and will make this time for myself: _________________________ (number days a week, hours a day, etc.), not only for me, but for everyone that I love and care for, so I can be a better version of myself for them.”


Excerpt from Embrace the Beautiful Chaos of Motherhood: The Secret of Staying True to Yourself by Stephanie Pereira

Now more than ever, we need to take care of ourselves in every way. In case no one has told you lately, you are a wonderful mom and your kiddos are lucky to have you. Go easy on yourself, and you will learn how being your best self is the best thing for everyone! Take a break and focus on YOU – try my quick meditation for moms. 

You can get a peek inside the book on Amazon. It’s available in e-book, paperback, and audiobook! Get your copy today.

Give Yourself Permission for Self Care

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