I am a single mother, so I know what it’s like to put other people’s needs above my own. In fact, I have been doing it for almost fifteen years now since my husband passed away when my daughters were small. And, it’s been the right thing to do as a parent.

Still, I believe it’s important to take care of yourself too. Even as a single mom, I have tried to sneak in a few moments here and there when I could attend to my own wants and needs in an attempt to maintain some balance. I think I’ve been fairly successful at it too.

As caregivers and parents, we are particularly prone to forgetting to care for ourselves. This can become a significant problem because our physical and mental health can suffer as a result of our own self-neglect. It also sets a bad example for those around us and sends the wrong message to others. Self-love is critical. When we lose sight of our self-love, we lose sight of ourselves.

Self-love can apply to many different areas of one’s life ranging from caring for your physical self to treating yourself from time to time. Recently, I decided that I was going to splurge on an item that I wanted for my birthday; a gift just for me. I had been putting it off for a couple of months because I wanted to spend money on other things, mostly for my children. Finally, I convinced myself that I deserved something, and went forward with the purchase despite my initial reservations. I’m so happy that I did. This particular gift was something that I’ve been considering for a long time, and it has brought me a lot of joy.

If you find yourself taking care of others, it’s vital that you also focus on self-care from time to time. Here are a few of the ways that you can do so:

  • Ensuring that you make health-related choices and appointments regularly.
  • Resting when needed.
  • Letting yourself off the hook when you aren’t perfect
  • Finding time for meditation and reflection.
  • Pouring into yourself on a regular basis.
  • Taking breaks from time to time.
  • Doing things that bring you joy.
  • Treating yourself here and there.

I promise that if you concentrate on these areas, you will bettter be able to care for yourself while caring for other important people in your life. Remind yourself regularly. You deserve it.