Ola Mamas, we are back this week with our very last episode in our Covid Compassion Project series with an episode that will hit home for many of you. Yes, it talks about self-care. I know we discuss that on the show in copious amount every single episode, but today's episode is special because it talks about self-care during change, being compassionate toward yourself, and all of the hard stuff, the icky stuff we know we need to do because its good for us and our sanity, but never get around to doing.
Joining us on the podcast today is Dr. Leah Katz, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist practicing in Portland, Oregon. Originally from New York, she completed her doctorate training at Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology. While living in New York, Dr. Katz worked at a community clinic where she led several groups, treated individuals and couples in therapy, and taught a course in Health Psychology at Stern College for Women.
We deal with change every single day - some big, some small, and some of it, life-changing. Well, Mama, I think it is safe to say that 2020 has been the year of colossal upheaval and change. And you know what, as moms, we are built for change. We are built for colossal upheaval every single day, from the time we become pregnant until our littles are all grown up. Being a mom changes you in so many ways, but all for the better.
However, how often do we embrace that change with compassion, with kindness, with wholehearted surrender?
So often, our desires shift, our life shifts, our goals shift. Everything we once knew to be dear changes. Right now is no different.
Mama, we always pressure ourselves to do more, be more every single day. We juggle it all round the clock, it just never stops. But one thing is for certain, if you are not whole, if you are not healthy (emotionally, mentally, and physically), everything else will cease to exist. You are needed. You are human first.
Right now, our homes are not only where we eat, sleep, breathe, and live. They are also our offices, our schools, our space of 24/7 coexistence with our families. And I don't know about you, but as much as I love my family to pieces, this mama needs her sanity. And that is in the form of daily self-care. Now I know, you're likely thinking, "Sabrina I don't have time to paint my nails and take a lavender salt bath." And that is okay. That is one part of self-care. The self-care Dr. Leah and I are referring to on the show is one that gives us sustenance through periods of change, one that grounds us, mothers us, and supports us every single day.
As moms, the first thing we let go of is taking care of ourselves. This looks like reheating the same cup of coffee 5x a day, eating crumbs or leftovers, reshuffling "our" plans over that of our partners' and children. Self-care in this context is literally stepping outside for 10 minutes and taking a deep breath. It could mean reading 10 pages of a book you love every day. It could mean waking up an hour earlier than your family so you can get some movement in your day or meditation or whatever it is that anchors you and fuels you. Self-care is what will set you up for success during times of massive change. And change is constant, amirite?!
Self-care is also being accepting of yourself, surrendering to your day, to the moment. You do not have to save the world in a day, Mama. I repeat you do not need to save the world every single day. You just need to save yourself and your family first, and that means putting on your oxygen mask first.
Here are some of the things we talk about today:
- Leading your children by example, and that starts with self-care. They watch everything - what you say, do, who you are. Your actions matter, Mama. Teach your kids to take care of themselves and nourish themselves by doing so for yourself.
- Fuel your mind, body, and soul every single day. This will look different every day, but every little bit matters.
- Anchor yourself to what brings you joy. Joy is sustainable every single day. Anchor down to what makes you truly YOU.
- Journal your thoughts, focus on the ways in which you have been brave every day - no matter what that looks like.
- Coping with change -- no matter what that looks like -- starts with giving yourself grace, acceptance, and having a plan for yourself, setting intentions for yourself and your family.
- Be intentional every moment instead of chasing the next moment. Make the best of every day that you're given, find the blessings in the lessons, in the tragic, in the heartbreak. Look for the growth, because I promise you, you are growing through every experience.
- Choose to be kind to yourself. Enjoy the present moment with your family, enjoy moments with yourself. Choose mindfulness during times of change. It's a game-changer.
These practices are simple but often forgotten the moment change hits us.
This is our time to become who we are meant to be. This is our time to metamorphose into the majestic and graceful butterflies that we've always been within. Intention is everything, Mama, as it sets the tone for our life as we know it. So as we slowly ease our way back into "normal," be intentional about what you want your "normal" to look like, feel like, and be like. I promise you, it makes all the difference and no matter what change comes your way, as long as your intentions are that of grace, acceptance, surrender, and love, everything will be alright. You've always got this, Mama.
To connect with Dr. Leah Katz, reach out to her via Instagram (where she loves hanging out the most), or her other platforms linked below.
PsychologyToday.com (you're gunna wanna read these! So much value and so much heart!)