self care

3 Things You are Teaching Your Children by Making Time for YOU

Let me tell you a story…

Picture Yourself…

You are in the middle of running up your checkbook...taking a cat nap, resting after not sleeping the night before...folding laundry…

Your child comes in begging you to play a game with him...paint her nails…order that hoodie you’ve been talking about.

You say “I’m busy right now”...

They begin to tell you how mean you are and how you never do anything for them.  

They cry or throw a tantrum and say you don’t love them.

You feel hurt and sad that they would say these things.

You immediately get upset.

You eventually give in.

You play a game with your child and then stress about how you were unable to finish working on the bills or maybe you feel resentful that you never get a minute to yourself and you are soooo tired.  

Day after day you find yourself feeling unappreciated and that no one is considerate of what you need.  

And All  YOU need is…

5 minutes alone in the bathroom!

To be able to pee in peace!

To eat a brownie all by yourself so you can oh and ah over it with no judgement!

To sing as loud as you want

To dance 90’s style without someone telling you to stop

To talk to adults about adult things without filtering it or using code words

To hear total silence for 60 solid seconds...

What Your Child/Teen Needs…

To learn how to be considerate of others

To learn to entertain themselves

To learn the world does not revolve around them

To learn that they won’t die if they don’t have someone entertaining them at all times.

Mama!  It is not your job to make sure your child or teen is happy 100%!!!!!!!

In  fact, you are doing them a disservice if you create an atmosphere where they expect to be happy 100%!

Your child/teen needs to learn how to manage boredom or loneliness and find ways to soothe and entertain themselves.  

One day they will be all grown up, and they will find a time where they are all alone and they won’t be able to deal.  They won’t understand that no one has time to entertain them. They won’t know what to do with downtime because they are so used to being entertained and provided for during the day as they grow up and they expect that life is that way.  They won’t be able to cope with times that are not as fun and happy. And let’s face it, life is not unicorns and rainbows! It gets real and it gets hard ALOT.

They will be very disappointed…



And they won’t have the tools to deal with this.  

They will be anxious or depressed because they don’t realize that lonely isn’t always a bad thing and quiet is nurturing too.  

Train your children to handle moments when you are tired…

Need alone time…


Need adult conversation…

Teach them to find activities they like to do on their own.

Teach them how to enjoy downtime too.

With younger children, you can model this by setting a timer and giving them an activity to do while you are doing an activity on your own.  You can even have “quiet time” where mom reads her book and your child reads or looks at pictures in their book quietly.

For older kids, help them to choose from a couple of activities they enjoy doing.  And if they choose instead to throw a fit or pout, simply direct them to choose that option where you don’t have to look at it.  Because, it’s their choice to pout if they want, but you don’t have to choose to watch it.

By making time for yourself, you are teaching them:

  1. How to be considerate of others’ time

  2. That the world does not revolve around them 100%

  3. How to self-regulate when they are feeling disappointed, bored, or lonely

I encourage you a lot to spend time with your children doing activities together and having family time, but you also have to make time to take care of you.  Even if it’s just 5 minutes alone in the bathroom! If you are spending adequate time with your children and nurturing them through family activities and supportive conversations, then you are doing your job to provide love.  But you do not have to sacrifice every moment of your day to do this. Part of your job is to train them to be productive, caring, kind, and efficient human beings. Giving them all of your attention at all times is not a realistic lesson for them to learn about life.  

Tell me if you struggle in this area and 1 thing you WILL do to start taking a little time for you.  

100 Ways to Cope with Stress and A Story On Self-Care

     The more you practice self-care and the better you take care of yourself on a daily basis, the more natural it becomes.  I've had one of the worst weeks in a long time in my life.  My father-in-law had a very serious accident with a chainsaw that could've been the end of all for him.  By the grace of God, he is healing and rehabilitating very well for an 81 year old man.  Through all of this, I have learned that my support system is bigger than I could've ever imagined, and now a week out I see that I have taken care of myself during this journey better than I may have in the past.

"If you practice self-care daily when you aren't facing tremendous stress, you will turn to healthy habits when you do hit a stressful period."

In the past, I may have comforted myself with junk food and quit taking care of myself and only focused on the stressor.  And even though I still struggled to find time to sleep or eat, I did realize I wasn't stuffing my face with junk and I WAS praying frequently and taking lots of deep breaths.  This week, we are traveling for my son's ball team, and I am finding myself seeking quiet spots to de-stress from last week.  I've kept my Bible close.  I have made time to run (my most effective tool to cope with stress).  I am continuing to fill my body with healthy choices, and I've found time to read leisurely.  These are my favorite ways to provide my own self-care, and the view in the mountains helps tremendously!

I encourage my clients to practice daily self-care.  Practice makes perfect right?  Well......practice doesn't really make perfect, but it does make it more natural and creates habit.  If you practice self-care daily when you aren't facing tremendous stress, you will turn to healthy habits when you do hit a stressful period.

"The more you practice self-care and the better you take care of yourself on a daily basis, the more natural it becomes. "

Let's face it, life happens!  It happens to us all, even me.  Difficult struggles do not discriminate.  Be prepared.  Practice your daily self-care.

Click here to sign up for a FREE list of 100 Coping Skills and let me know in the comments which skills you find most helpful.


I'm a Failure

So I've really had a come to Jesus moment right smack in the face Very Recently.  I don't usually share about myself, but I think the best way to help others sometimes is to show that even I struggle with life sometimes.

For some reason, when people hear I am a therapist, they get this notion that I have it all together and all figured out and that everything is easy for me and my family.  I don't know where people get that idea that therapists are perfect.  The only perfect being I know of was Jesus, and I surely am not Jesus.

I want you to know the ugly truth...

I fail at things.  Sometimes I fail HARD.  I fail at taking care of myself.  I fail at parenting.  I fail at marriage.  I fail at friendships.  I even fail at work.  And that's OK!  Because I'm allowed to fail.

#1- I am human. 


#3- Failure leads to all the good stuff 




The last couple of years, I have had some weird health issues pop up.  And while some are not common, others are becoming more common in people my age.  Why?  Because we live in a world of constant activity and business.  It's all relevant to self-care.  I am an advocate to others in terms of self-care.  I would like to think my practice is around empowering women, teens, and children to care for themselves.  It's not just about listening for me.  It's about knowing when you leave my office, you have a way to be gentler on yourself and healthier.





However, I have been failing at taking care of my own self.  I got so wrapped up in things I wanted to do and began spiraling into a puddle of self-doubt as health issues arrived.  My body has been telling me to slow down, and it has been trying to signal to me that I'm forgetting the most important thing.  Me.  I quit running consistently, quit eating clean, gained weight, lost progress I had made and all the while ran myself down trying to do too many things and overthinking every step I took.  My parenting became lazy, my marriage became a little distant, and my house was missing attention.


But all it takes is a new day, a new sunrise and me saying I'm done with how things are going.  It's time to put myself first again.

Do you ever find yourself losing this battle?  I know you do, unless you are Jesus...  Life is a marathon, not a sprint.  There are hurdles and injuries and struggles to make it to your goal.  But it is so worth it.  If you find yourself in a losing battle right now, all I have to say is Learn from it, Forgive Yourself, and Move Forward because every day is a new day.

And remember:



#1- I am Human!

#2- I am not Jesus!


#3- Failure leads to all the good stuff! 


I am going to spend some time focusing on self-care and invite you to join me.  Let me know in the comments where you are in your marathon of life.  Are you struggling right now?  Maybe I can help coach you along.