Put the oxygen mask on yourself first: How We Can Best Take Care of Everyone

02.06.2012 / Blog Posts Health and Wellness

AP Photo

By Rebecca Nenner, Holistic Health and Wellness Coach

How can we best take care of our children?

Take care of ourselves first.

As women, often the moment that our first child is born is the most pivotal moment in our lives. Not only was it the most beautiful baby you had ever seen but it was the moment you changed forever. You had gone from being cared for to the caretaker. You have literally spent countless hours, days, and years, doing, thinking and buying things for this person who is the most important person in the world to you. Your child and your subsequent children always came first. It is just the way of human nature. We protect our young.

As the years go by, you may find that you are less important in their lives, but have not taken care of yourself. These years of neglect may have taken a toll on your body. Sometimes you find that you have less energy than you used to have, sometimes you find that you have pu ton weight in your middle that you have never had. What’s worse is that your mood seems to be all over the place. You see the signs of aging on your face, in your hair, and you may realize that you have really forgotten about taking care of yourself. This is an all too common story amongst women in their 40’s and 50’s. Your children are growing up and are embarking on their lives, and have left you to yourself.

If this is you then listen up - You are not alone! It is time for you to take back your life. In order for your kids, and spouses, and you to live in harmony, you must start taking care of you first. Often times, women say they can’t find the time to take care of themselves, but you must make the time! It is so important to do that. You need to feel GOOD. You need to feel like you are beautiful, and you need to get your energy back. What you don’t realize is that when you don’t take care of your body, often times it will not take care of you.

Making the Change

Change is difficult, but well worth the effort. Small changes over time can turn into good habits.

1. First, set a time each day for you. Whether it be for a walk, a jog, an exercise class, or even a massage. It is important to slot in some time just for you.

2. Enlist a friend to help you stay on track. Sometimes all it takes is someone to walk with you. They hold you accountable; therefore you have to show up.

3. Set some goals. Often times, deciding what you want to achieve helps you to actually stay on track and achieve it! Write down your goals and make them realistic so that they are not too difficult for you to attain. When you have reached that goal, write a new goal down and work on that.

4. Eliminate one bad food from your diet and keep it out of your diet. This allows you to empower yourself to conquer your bad eating habits with small steps that can be more easily turned into habits rather than dieting, which always ends up being a short term result..

5. Love yourself! The most important thing in life is to really love yourself and if you don’t, start working on things that you can do to make yourself happy. Find your passion and work toward that so that you can really enjoy yourself and what you do. Others will love you too, when you are your authentic self and you exude joy and happiness!

6. Seek support. Reach out to people who can help you. A health coach or counselor can help you to set a course of action customized specifically for you, including learning what foods work for you and how you can achieve your health goals and hold you accountable to them.

Remember that you are important and when you feel good, the family will feel good too, so don’t forget to take care of yourself first!

You can visit Rebecca's website at Have questions for her? Leave them below!

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