The Best Evening Self Care Routine for Busy Moms and Women on the Go
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While we can all agree that an ideal self-care routine might look like pouring ourselves a glass of wine after a long day, putting on a plush bathrobe and charcoal face mask and binge-watching a favorite tv show while our partners put the kids to bed, we can also all agree that incorporating a routine like that into our schedules is pretty far-fetched.
Creating a quick and effective self-care routine doesn’t have to be an involved process. For most of us, we’re busy and on the go much of the time, and even the mere thought of partaking in a complex self-care routine can sound like too much work at the end of a busy day. But fear not! You can still make time for a simple yet beneficial self-care routine that– if practiced consistently– will bring you some much needed inner (and outer) peace and overall calm to an involved and active life.
Read on to learn about some of our very best evening self-care routine tips for those nights when you just need a hard pause on life.
Start With a Hot Shower or Draw a Bath
When we’re busy getting our kids ready for bed, cooking dinner, packing lunches, or trying to fit in a date night, we often sacrifice our own selves and what we might need (like a shower, for instance) because our energy and attention is constantly geared toward all of the other people we care for in our lives. As women, we naturally want to support and care for those that we love, but it can start to take a toll on our physical and mental health if we don’t carve out deliberate time for ourselves.
Make your best effort to unwind with a long shower or bath. The heat from a shower can relax and relieve tension throughout our muscles, and open the respiratory chambers for deeper, clearer breathing. Aromatherapy coupled with a bath or shower enhances that experience.
Taking a shower or bath is also a great way to fit in some alone time on days when you’re overloaded with work, family, and social obligations. If your life is particularly hectic, ask your partner or a good friend to run the ship at home while you take some time out for yourself. Part of creating and sticking to an effective self-care routine is by asking others around you for a hand so that you can make space and time for self-care rituals.
Hop in Bed A Little Bit Earlier
Work to shift your evening schedule forward a little bit, so that you can crawl into bed thirty minutes earlier than you normally would. Set an alarm on your phone (or multiple if you need to) to signal you throughout the evening to get things done with enough time to get in bed earlier than you typically do.
Creating thirty minutes of time to sit and unwind in bed can help you get into a more relaxed state for a fulfilling night’s sleep, and will give you a window of time to breathe deep, read, sit quietly, or even talk with your partner just before bed. Those thirty minutes can be spent however is most relaxing for you, but giving yourself the window of time is where the real self-care practice comes into play.
Consider Getting an Essential Oil Diffuser
Essential Oil Diffusers have grown in popularity across the past few years and for good reason: they can be filled with virtually any type of oil to help sooth, relax, and enhance your mood as you go to sleep. Releasing oils like lavender and chamomile, diffusers emit a balanced blend of essential oils to relieve stress and can even help ward off illnesses if you start feeling under the weather. Using essential oils directly on the body or through a diffuser can also help reduce inflammation and congestion throughout the body.
Aside from all of the health benefits found in using essential oils, diffusers are also just a really relaxing addition to a bedtime and self-care routine. We recommend turning on the diffuser while you prepare for bed so that by the time you’re ready to go to sleep, the diffuser’s magic will have already started working and your bedroom will feel like you’re in a luxurious, relaxing spa. If diffusers aren’t your thing, try exploring some different essential oils targeted to your own specific needs. There are oils for just about every ailment or concern out there, so find what works or smells good to you and simply rub a little bit on your temples or wrists each night before bed to start basking in the benefits of essential oils!
Try Some Deep Breathing or a Guided Meditation
If you’ve managed to set aside a ten minute window of time before bed each night, consider using this stretch of time to practice some deep breathing or a guided meditation session. In a study done by the Mayo Clinic, researchers found that meditation increases self-awareness, reduces negative emotion, and can manage conditions like anxiety, heart disease, asthma, and sleep issues, among other disorders.
If you’ve never meditated before and it sounds like the last thing you want to do before bed, try downloading a guided meditation app which will walk you through a short meditation session, or simply take 5 minutes to pay attention to your breathing. Inhale and exhale slowly, noticing how your body fills with air and slowly releases it from the lungs. Focusing on your breathing can help incite calm and relaxation before sleeping, and also allow us to focus more freely on the present moment, and can help increase patience and tolerance in our daily routines.
Write in a Journal Before Bed
Another great element to add into your evening self-care routine is to try journaling or reading a little bit before bed. Journaling is free, and a great tool to help you reflect on your day, and explore through the recesses of your creativity and free thought as your words come out on the page. There’s no rhyme or reason to journaling; you simply write whatever comes to your mind. Some people like to keep a more strict log of the day’s activities so that they can look back on it in years to come and see how they’ve grown and changed, others like to use journaling as a safe space for their thoughts and feelings. It can also be used as a tool to clear your mind and release information – as a “brain dump”.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t consider yourself a strong writer, journaling is about your own personal journey through your thoughts and life, and exists as a place to vent and dream. Sometimes it can seem like we hold the stressors of our day close to us, and we go to bed still holding them tightly, unable to reflect on the issue and ultimately to let it go. Journaling provides and outlet for our problems, and over time can become a secret weapon to combat stress and anxiety. So grab a pen and a notebook and start jotting down your thoughts each night!
Helpful Items for Creating An Evening Self Care Routine
Here are some tools you’ll find helpful in creating your own evening self care routine. All of these can be securely ordered online and delivered right to your door.
Plush Bath Robe – There’s no feeling like slipping into something soft and comfortable at the end of a busy or hectic day.
2 Piece Lounge Set – For when you just want to relax and get comfortable or transition to bedtime, you’ll love the way these feel.
Green Tea Face Mask – Nourish, hydrate, heal your skin and fight premature aging by stripping away toxins and pollutants from your face once each week helps you to refresh.
Microdermabrasion Facial Scrub and Exfoliator – Clean, nourish, and replenish your face and skin with natural ingredients to restore and heal.
Aromatherapy Bath Kit – Immerse yourself in pleasant, stress-relieving, soothing natural scents to help your mind and body to relax.
Essential Oils – Helps with breathing meditation and relaxation, encourages deep breathing.
Essential Oil Diffuser – You can scent a specific area or an entire room with refreshing, natural scents.
Guided Meditation for Relaxation and Sleep – Helps you to fall asleep faster and sleep more deeply to encourage healthy, restful sleep.
Journal – Whether it’s a brain dump from the day’s activities, a way to memorialize your internal conversation, a means to plan for your future or to name the things your grateful for, journaling can be both a helpful tool and a great means for mental and emotional release.
Whatever your evening self-care routine becomes, remember that you shouldn’t get frustrated with yourself if you can’t see it to completion every night. Part of practicing self-care is reminding yourself that life is crazy, and managing our time in the way we’d like isn’t always feasible. Try easing into this routine or creating one that works for you, and try to pay attention to how your day starts to feel more manageable once you’ve started devoting more time to yourself at night.
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Kimberly Clay is the founder and creative force behind What She Say. She’s a business professional, writer and editor who’s been creating and managing digital content for nearly twenty years. Her work is now focused in the areas of self-improvement and personal development, and she is passionate about helping other individuals, especially women, to find a path for living their best life.