Heather Marshall on December 8th, 2008

Believe it or not, self-care is an incredibly important part of your marriage.  Sound selfish? It really isn’t! Taking care of yourself & your needs will actually make you a BETTER wife!!

Let me illustrate this point…

Last week was a loooong week for me… A full week back to school after Thanksgiving, so the kids were nutty… and by Friday, I was so done. Feeling run-down, emotional, and on-edge, I wanted to just crawl into bed, but I knew that wouldn’t fix anything.  Fortunately, I had a girls’ night planned, and Jason suggested that I go at least for a little while; I could always come home early if I still felt tired.

Can you guess what happened? I arrived at my friend’s house tired… but by a few hours into it, I had forgotten that I was planning to leave early! Around midnight my phone rang… Jason was wondering if I was ever going to make it home! :)

What changed? I was around other women, talking about everyday things, away from the pressing issues of my house (dishes & laundry to do, a table to declutter, emails to check, etc) & enjoying some much-needed fellowship.  Not to mention the fact that I stole my friend Sue’s baby & held him for a while! Nothing like a sweet newborn to cuddle!! :) (Isn’t he precious?!)

Not only did I have a great time of hanging out & fellowship, when I came home I felt refreshed, renewed, and recharged!

When’s the last time you allowed yourself a break from housework, the kids, or (gasp) even your husband? Are you feeling worn out, fatigued, easily irritated? You may need to allow yourself some time for self-care!!

Not sure what to do? Here are some ideas:

  • Join a ladies’ Bible study.
  • Schedule a weekly or monthly girls’ night with other women from your church, Bible study, etc.
  • Get a manicure, pedicure, or massage.
  • Go out for coffee or shopping (either on your own or with friends, whichever your preference is).
  • Join a gym, especially one that offers aerobics classes!

Short on time, money, or even friends to go somewhere with?  Here are a few other ideas…

  • Go for a walk.
  • Curl up on the couch with a cup of tea and a good book (either after the kids are in bed, or send them outside with Dad!)
  • Pick up the phone & call your mom, sister, or best girlfriend to chat.

Nervous about leaving your hubby alone with the kids? (Or even by himself?) No worries, he’ll be fine! Growing up, I loved the nights my dad was in charge - nobody had to eat their veggies!! :) Let your husband make his own fun memories with your kids, or if there are no kids involved, give him a night to be by himself (I’m sure he’ll find a night of video games or competition-free TV watching pleasurable).

Oh, & if he complains…. just let him know that you’ll miss him…. but it’ll be worth it for BOTH of you to have that time apart!

Admittedly, self-care was a hard concept for me to grasp during the first year of our marriage… I felt like Jason and I should do everything together… but then I found myself missing out on my female friendships!  Also, I was often irritable and burnt out… looking back, I think I can attribute a lot of that to a lack of self-care.

It took a lot for me to realize that being a striving wife does NOT mean doing everything for my husband and nothing for me. And, it took a lot to realize that doing something for me does NOT mean I’m selfish!

Let me know if what I’m saying makes sense… and if you’ve tried it! I’d love to know if you noticed a difference, like I have!  Leave a comment & tell me YOUR story!!

Keep on Striving,

Heather :)

Related posts:

  1. Taking Time for ME Time
  2. Striving For the Goal….
  3. Tried & True Keys to Being Productive
  4. Small Victories + Every Day = A Striving Wife!
  5. Striving for Faith… the Faith to Move Mountains!!

4 Responses to “Self-Care: Selfish or Striving?”

  1. Great post. It’s like the concept on the airlines to put your oxygen on first then help the person next to you.

    Engrafted by His Grace-
    Shonda

  2. Its so awesome to hear what a blessing Girl’s night is for you Heather! It’s a blessing to have you over! Any time you need one of those girlie nights or chats you know where I am!! :D

  3. For me, it is so important to spend time to myself relaxing or with friends. It helps me to refresh and renew myself. When I come back from it, I am in a better mood and more ready to tackle the tasks of my day!

    -Ashley

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