It’s no secret that I am terrible when it comes to self care. Although it’s not logical I always think there are more important things to do. I’ll get to it later. Sound familiar? Then the day comes when I am so stressed and tired that I’m snapping at my family, getting nothing done, and just overall unpleasant. It was in the midst of one of these days that the idea for this open when self care ideas for moms came to me. Wouldn’t it be great if there were a little something you could pull out in these moments to make your life easier? Now there can be.
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On days you are so stressed and tired you're snapping at your family and unproductive, pull out these open when #selfcare ideas for #moms. Click To Tweet
I have made open when letters as a gift for my husband a few years ago. I honestly don’t know if he ever opened them all. He’s not quite the romantic that I am. However, I knew this concept could work really well for me. While I continue trying to get better at taking care of myself, this is great for the interim. If you’re struggling too, these can help you get through the tough days.
What is Open When Self Care
This idea is a little different from the open when letters for your husband. For started, they are not all letters. Frankly, on the really rough days a simple letter isn’t going to cut it. A letter doesn’t get dinner on the table or help you get more sleep. That is what moms need and what these open self care ideas should be.
Self Care Needs List
Before you set up your envelopes you need a self care needs list. On a piece of notebook paper list all of the things you struggle with. I recommend having at least 12 (one for each month) however these can be repeated multiple times if needed. For example, I really struggle with putting my work away so that is one that I would have multiples of. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Getting Dinner Made
- Going to Bed Early
- Reading a Book
- Taking a Shower
- Putting Work Down
- Negative Self Talk
- Self Care Needs List
- Manila Envelopes (Or any large envelope)
- Items for Envelopes
Write down the items on your self care list on the front of the envelopes with the words “Open When”. For example, your getting dinner made would read, “Open When Dinner Isn’t Made.”
Next, fill the envelopes with items and letters that will make that moment easier. See below for examples.
Put the finished envelopes together in an accessible place in your home. Pull them out when you most need them.
Envelope Item Ideas
Getting Dinner Made
This one can be filled with pizza gift cards for those really tough days. If you’re on a strict budget like us, you can also keep a surplus of homemade frozen pizzas in the freezer. You can also put some inexpensive convenience food in the envelope such as mac-n-cheese or even cereal.
Going to Bed Early
Fill this one with your favorite caffeine free tea bags (I love Stash Teas)or a lavender-filled eye mask (like this DIY one right here). Anything that makes sleep and rest easier is perfect for this envelope.
Reading a Book
Put a new (to you) book in this one that you can devour easily. This is the perfect envelope for guilty pleasure reads. Mine is any of the Lindsay Sands vampire books.
Taking a Shower
Add a bath bomb or candles to this envelope and take a relaxing bath when you open it. Be sure to throw on your headphones so you don’t hear the chaos for a half an hour or so.
Putting Work Down
Let the kiddos and your husband help with ideas for these. Card games, movies, and other fun items should go in this. If your family thinks you need to put your work away, chances are it’s because they need attention from you. These items are things that you can do together.
Negative Self Talk
Have your family write letter about why they love you or what you’re good at for this envelope. Another option that works well (especially if you have little kids too young to write) is to create a video of them answering those questions. When you find yourself talking negatively internally, pull this out.
Now that you have you have finished your open when self care ideas for moms, there is still one thing left to do. Here is what will make this system truly successful: enlist help. Put your open when envelopes in a place where the entire family can access them. Then if someone notices that I’m having trouble putting my work down or haven’t read a book lately, they can pull out the envelope and give it to me. The catch is when someone hands you an envelope you have to do it. This will not always be easy, trust me. It forces you to take care of yourself and that is the point. Your family will often notice your lack of self care before you do. Be gracious and let them help keep you accountable.
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I’m a nerdy, crafty mom of three adorable little kids. I love writing and creating, but in my non-existent free time I also love karaoke, taking my kids to the zoo, and reading. I got my degree in Science (no idea how that happened) but I took every English class I could get my hands on because, yeah, I’m that girl.