Daily life is quite busy for moms.
Balancing home life, work life, time with your spouse or partner, and time with your children can be a challenging task. There is little free time left for Mom when you look at the day as a whole. And many of you moms may argue, if I have so little free time on a daily basis, why should I take up some of that time to meditate?
We all have daily rituals we enjoy, such as that delicious cup of coffee that welcomes us with its warmth and jolt of caffeine or checking our Facebook feed (or Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest…options are plentiful these days). I realized that if I had time to check several social media accounts and my email throughout the day (has anyone else gotten stuck in the Facebook feed for 20 minutes and wonder where the time went?), I also had time to meditate.
A great advantage meditation offers: it can set your intention for the day and refresh you after scrolling through social media feeds or spending time wondering (or worrying) about what the day will bring.
It’s time well spent, and you only need to set aside five to ten minutes—even two minutes can be enough—out of the (approximately) 960 minutes that you’re awake each day.
I hear the phrase “me time” quite a bit from other moms. It’s like a holy grail we’re seeking, desperate to have a little time to relax and restore ourselves.
“Me time” can be considered self-care, which is very important for those of you who are always taking care of others at home and/or in the workplace. To take care of others, you have to be willing to take of yourself as well. Having some quality “me time” can make the time spent with family even more enjoyable.
Meditation is a very healthy and helpful option for self-care. It provides an opportunity to check-in with ourselves, by focusing on something (usually the breath) other than the distractions around us and the thoughts that run through our heads.
By committing to a daily practice, you have some guaranteed alone time to sit and just be (even if it’s only 5 minutes).
How to Make Time to Practice
Here are my recommended best times of day to meditate (the Mama edition):
- Early in the morning: while the babies and/or children are still asleep
- Evening: after the babies or children have gone to sleep
- Middle of the Night: this is my moms of newborns option
- At work: take five minutes from your lunch break
I have used all four of these times of day to maintain my meditation practice. I have been meditating on and off for years, but I started my daily practice when my second daughter was four weeks old (and yes, I used the middle of the night option while I was holding her). Personally, I prefer morning practice. It offers a clarifying start to the day and is especially useful when I really need to center myself.
Evening is a perfect time to reflect on the day and to practice gratitude, and gratitude is an effective practice for increasing happiness. I also meditate at work (I work part-time as a Speech-Language Pathologist in a rehabilitation setting).
Tips for how to meditate at work
After enjoying your meal, take out your phone and set a timer for five minutes. Depending on the privacy of the lunch area (I thankfully have a semi-private cubicle to utilize), you may need to find a spot that you can use at work for a quick five minute meditation. If you can go outside on your lunch break and walk or sit for five minutes while meditating, even better.
Meditating at work has been a game changer for me. Since I work part-time, getting back into “work mode” can be challenging. I find my mind wandering at times (wondering how the girls are doing, hoping I’m meeting productivity requirements for the day, hoping my documentation exceeds expectations, etc.) while I’m trying to document my sessions.
Taking those five minutes out of my 30 minute lunch break offers the perfect opportunity to sit, focus on the breath, and allow my thoughts, worries and concerns to pass by like clouds in the sky. I return to work refreshed and ready for the second half of the day.
You are Important
I know there will be days when you feel like you don’t even have five minutes to yourself to do anything, let alone meditate. But part of having a daily routine for your health and well being (whether it be yoga, cardio, strength training, meditation, etc.), is making the time to do it.
Set your alarm clock five minutes earlier to have that extra time in your morning routine, for example. I am not a morning person, and I have started doing this (since my girls seem to get up earlier and earlier each week). This may not work for everyone. Do what is best for you.
Make yourself a priority, because you’re important, people depend on you and, you’re worth it!
Jennifer Mazzoni, M.S. CCC-SLP is a full time mom, part-time Speech Language Pathologist. She has two adorable daughters (a two year old and an eight month old), and she work part-time in a rehabilitation setting. She lives with her husband, two daughters, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel in the Chicago area. Follow her blog, Help Mama Meditate and also catch her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!
Editor: Dana Gornall