If you’re like most working mothers, you only have a little time to yourself. Between working full-time and caring for your children, finding time to relax and recharge can be hard. But it’s important to take some time for yourself, even if it’s just a few hours here and there. Here are some tips on how to make the most of your time off from work:
Schedule Some “Me” Time
Just like you would schedule a meeting or conference call, schedule some time for yourself on your days off. Whether it’s an hour in the morning to read or go for a walk, or an evening slot for a yoga class or girls’ night out, put it in your calendar and treat it like an appointment that can’t be canceled. This will help you make sure you use your free time to do something you enjoy. A regular dose of “me” time will help you unplug and reduce stress, so you can better take on the demands of your day-to-day life. It also helps control your moods and increase your patience level.
When doing your time alone, it’s important to choose activities that you find relaxing. This could be going for a walk, reading a book, taking a bubble bath, or anything else that helps you unwind. It would also help to avoid screens, such as your phone and laptop. Too much screen time can harm your mental health and cause stress or anxiety. This may also tempt you to check your work emails or messages, which can take away from the time you should be using to relax.
Plan Ahead for Your Time Off
If you plan your days off from work in advance, it can make it easier to maximize the time you have. Make a checklist of what needs to get done ahead of time, such as grocery shopping or cleaning. This will help free up more time on your days off that you can use for yourself. You can also plan fun activities to have something to look forward to on your days off. This could be anything from dinner and a movie with friends to going out for coffee alone.
It’s also important to plan for childcare if needed. If you have someone to watch your children while you’re away, arrange it in advance. This will save you time and give you peace of mind knowing that your children are being taken care of while you’re away.
Set Boundaries with Work
It can be tempting to check work email or take care of a few tasks during your days off, but it’s important to set boundaries to truly relax. Let your co-workers know you’re unavailable during certain hours. Turn off your email notifications, so you’re not constantly tempted to check what’s new in your inbox. This will help you stay focused on enjoying your time off.
The main purpose of your time off from work is to recharge and reduce stress, so ensure you stay caught up in getting things done. Instead, use this time to relax and spend quality time with your family and friends. This way, you can return from your days off feeling refreshed and ready to take on the workweek. When you’re recharged, you’re more likely to be productive and creative, which will help you in the long run.
Make Time for Your Children
Although it’s important to make time for yourself, remember that your children also need you. If you have been busy, you might need more quality time with them. So, when you have some free time, plan something fun for the entire family. It could be a picnic in the park or a movie night at home—any activity that allows you to connect and bond will do. It’s a great time to catch up with them and learn more about their day. These moments of togetherness are essential for children and help create lasting memories. It also helps strengthen the bond between parents and children, which is important for their overall development and well-being.
Your time off is also the best opportunity to know if there have been health issues, physical and mental, with your children. If you notice any unusual behavior or changes in their health, seek medical help immediately. Take them to a pediatric care clinic to be checked out and make sure they get the care they need. It is worth it to take more time off from work to take care of your children.
Working mothers are always short on time, but making time for yourself now and then is important. By scheduling “me” time, you can make the most of your limited free time and return to work feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.