Each and every one of us is unique and special in our own way.
We have things we love, things we dislike, we have good days, we have not so good days, and we each have our own way of coping with life's daily pressures.
When thinking about how to cope with life, who puts Self Care at the top of the list?!
Each person we have spoken to about Self Care has shared different ways they support themselves. One friend picks one day a month dedicated to herself. She does what she likes that day and it's all about self love and pampering. Others practice Self Care by rock climbing, kickboxing, face masks, yoga, bubble baths, nature walks or simply reading a good book! Just as each one of us is unique, the way in which we practice Self Care is different too!
There is great value and importance for educators and parents to practice Self Care. As Registered Early Childhood Educators (RECE’s) we understand the stress that can come with a busy, full and lively classroom or home. Each tiny human in our lives has their own way of doing things, their own unique personalities and their own temperaments. But as educators or parents, we also have our own issues, personalities and stressors that we are working on managing, while managing everyone else's as well!
Phew! Take a deep breath, that's a lot happening!
This is why we view Self Care as such an important practice that you should incorporate into your daily/weekly/monthly routines.
If we walk into a classroom, or the living room, holding onto resentment about an argument with our boss, significant other, or our messy kitchen, we end up sharing those feelings with the children in that space. When your mood shifts because you are frustrated, your children feels it too and begins to experience their own emotional response as a reflection.
So what can you do about it?
Self Care will not solve all your problems, they will not vanish into thin air, but practicing Self Care will support a better, more positive mindset because you are taking the time to make yourself feel more relaxed and happy. Self Care is a way to reset, refocus, and connect with yourself on a deeper level, in order to show up as your best self for your family and students. By doing things for yourself that make you feel good, you are able to arrive a little more grounded and a little more prepared.
Let's face it life will throw something at you, or your classroom will test your limits. Self Care, in the form of mindful breathing, taking a deep breath in and a deep breath out, will support you and help you face that new challenge with calm and ease.
Carving out time for Self Care does not make you selfish, it makes you thoughtful! It allows you to show up as your best self for all those people around you! Take that time in the morning to have a coffee before the rest of the house wakes up, ask your spouse to watch the kids so you can go on a walk, do a mini meditation before walking into your daycare (or the new at-home classroom, aka the living room), reset from a frustrating drive or challenging morning - Remember the importance of mental health.
Mini Activity to support Self Care
-Take a moment now, grab a paper and pen (or do it electronically)
-Make a list of the ways you can practice Self Care
-Once you have made your list, think of how you can incorporate these activities/experiences into your life daily, weekly or monthly.
-Who can support you? How can you support yourself to make it happen?
Communicate your needs with your family, be open with them when you need a break.
Being open and honest about your needs will model that positive behaviour for your child, and as a reflection, your children will too express themselves when they need a “break”.
*At Mindful Little Things we believe learning is a lifelong journey! We are creating a course that focuses on Self Care + Mindfulness for Educators. We specifically designed this course to support Continued Education for Registered Early Childhood Educators, however we encourage all Educators of Children (teachers, parents, aunts and uncles or anyone else that wishes to support a child in their life) to join us for our workshop!
Email us (email@example.com) if you would like to be updated when registration opens for this unique course!