Before our daughter was born, I was pretty great at the whole treat yourself mentality. I worked out when I wanted, met friends for dinner whenever I pleased, and sometimes (gasp!) I just sat around and did absolutely nothing.
When our little came along, I stopped treating myself — to anything, really. Every single moment was dedicated to work or family, and it felt selfish to put my needs ahead of anyone else’s.
If I could go back and change one thing about being a new mom, it would have been to let go of the guilt and remember that my happiness, peace and well-being matters as much as anyone else’s.
I’ve since slowly learned how to squish in time for myself. Treating yourself doesn’t have to mean spending a day at a spa. There are countless tiny ways to reward you for being so unbelievably awesome.
Since this is Treat Yourself: Seacoast Moms Edition, here are some super Seacoast-y ways to smile, relax and take a delicious breath of salty air.
- Go to Martingale Wharf in the late afternoon by yourself or with your best girlfriend, and sit outside. Order two oysters, and let your feet dangle over the water. Surf is a great option for a one-mama lunch. Sit at the bar, and order a sushi roll.
- Take a leisurely walk across the Memorial Bridge, and remember at least ten reasons why you love living on the Seacoast.
- Take a rowing class at Mission. Not only does it make you sweat, it makes you feel like the super amazing kick-booty mama you are.
- Go to the beach by yourself. Sit in a chair without having to watch a single kiddo. Listen to your Mom Power Jams mix. What? You don’t have a Mom Power Jams mix? Don’t worry, I made one for you here.
- Go for a hike at your favorite spot with only the dog. If you don’t have a dog, you can have borrow mine.
- Go to Target by yourself. You don’t have to buy anything, or you can buy twenty things you don’t really need. Wander the aisles aimlessly. Trust me, it’s kind of glorious.
- Have a dinner picnic with your best friend (or friends). Pick your favorite outdoor spot. Vow to do it once a month for the entire summer, and then, actually do it.
- Try paddle boarding or go kayaking. Do something outdoors that requires only one person.
- Get a turmeric latte (hot or iced) at White Heron. Sit on the comfy couch and people watch.
The hardest part of treating yourself is asking for help, but it’s important enough to just do it! Ask a spouse, partner, sitter, family member or neighbor. Tell them you need some time to do something that makes you happy, then do the exact thing that makes you happy. Treat yourself — you’re worth it, mama!