5 Things Parents Can Do to Create Alone Time
You’re a parent. From the moment you welcome your new baby into the home, your life changes. You create new goals, hold new ambitions. You say goodbye to alone time.
You don’t have to sacrifice all your “me time” for the sake of the newest member of the family. Not only do you need time for yourself, it’s necessary to your physical and especially your emotional health. Let’s figure out how to create this alone time so easily you’ll wonder why you haven’t done this before.
The simple truth? Kids complicate even the best-laid plans. Trying to slip in a little alone time is near impossible just because things are going to come up. Taking deliberate time for yourself might mean arranging it. Hire a sitter for an hour and do something fun. A word of warning? If you hire someone to watch the kids but choose to stay home for your break, the sitter should handle anything which might come up. Not you.
Take Advantage of What You Already Have
Do the kids take a nap still every day? Rather than using the time to catch up on chores, why not use the time for you? Those household tasks? They’ll still be there when you’re done, but you’ll feel better able to manage them.
Create a Signal
If your kids are a little older and don’t need constant looking after, teach them how to give you space. A closed-door (or partially closed door if you’re nervous being too out of touch) lets them know you’re busy right now and to come back later unless it’s an emergency.
Use Some Creativity
If the kids are engrossed in something else, they’re really not paying attention to you. Give them a craft project or pop in a movie and settle somewhere nearby to put your feet up and take a much deserved little “you time” while they’re busy.
Wait for Dark
OK, you’re probably pretty tired at the end of the day. But carving out some time for a gentle and pampering bedtime routine can be a blissful way to end the day after the kids are down for the night. Think about how much better you’ll sleep with 20 minutes all your own before you tumble into bed, to do precisely what you want.
“Me time” is really all about intentionality. Looking for the opportunity and seizing it as it comes is a lot easier than you think it is. The hardest part? Convincing yourself to let go long enough to enjoy your “me time.” When this happens: Stop. Take a deep breath and remind yourself the kids need a parent who is calm and relaxed. Besides, you’re worth it.