25 Self-Care Hacks for Busy Mums (…who don’t have time for self-care!)

25 Self-Care Hacks for Busy Mums (…who don’t have time for self-care)

Mums, I know you’re busy – whether you’re a stay-at-home mum, or a working mum in any capacity, life is busy and demanding.

You need to take some time, every day, to nurture yourself, and find a way to unwind, relax or feel invigorated. You’re always giving to others, but what about your needs? Who’s fulfilling those?

We don’t all have an hour to get to that yoga class.

We don’t all have extra spending money to splash out on a girls night out.

What you do have, is a few minutes, scattered through your days, when you can start to consciously give back to YOU.

Here are some easy – and mostly free – ways that you can start to honour yourself and feel like you’re finally giving yourself what you need – albeit in small bursts.

Which ones have you tried?

  1. Breathe! Practice deep, diaphragmatic breathing, and do these in sets of 3 throughout your day (this literally takes about 30 seconds!)

2. Download a Mindfulness Meditation app. There are loads to choose from just use google  to guide the way, and see which ones sound best for you.

3. Listen to 1 guided mindfulness exercise from the app you’ve just downloaded (many of these are 2-3 minutes in length. That’s it mama, I know you’ve got 2 minutes!

4. Go for a walk or jog – whether it’s 10 minutes or 40 minutes – you’ll lighten your mind and mental load, and energise your body and soul.

5. Step outside and just BE. What can you HEAR? What can you SEE? What can you SMELL? What can you FEEL? What can you TASTE? (feel free to take a little treat with you as you step outside for a few minutes!)

6. Make yourself that cuppa you’ve been meaning to make all morning! Do it, Boil that kettle, grab that bottle of kombucha, glass of water, or whatever it is that you need right now. Sit in your fave chair, and don’t get up until you’re finished.

7. Call a good friend. Don’t text or WhatsApp them – actually phone them, and have a good old fashioned conversation – even if you only have 10 minutes. You’ll both be glad you did!

8. Send a naughty/nice message to your partner. Let them know you’re thinking about them during the day. Again, you’ll both be glad you did.

9. Do something kind or helpful for someone. One of the best and easiest ways you can feel better about yourself is through helping others. Truth.

10. Take the time to put some make-up on and feel lovely (if you like to wear it, of course).

11. Plan your favourite meal for lunch or dinner (even if you buy it, rather than make it). Then, enjoy it!

12. Turn off all your screens 30-60 minutes before your intended sleep time. This will help your brain to have the right sleep hormones you need to drift off to sleep. Blue screens can impact your melatonin (sleep hormone) which can make sleep more difficult.

13. Have a bath or shower at the end of your day. Relax those muscles, have some peaceful time to yourself, and cleanse your mind and body from your day before you get into bed.

14. Check out a quick yoga video on YouTube, and fit a few moves into your day or evening. Even if it’s one pose, like ‘Legs up the Wall’ for a few minutes – feel the difference this can make.

15. Say ‘No’ to that request/invitation from someone. By saying ‘no’ rather than ‘yes’ (when you don’t really want to do something), you’re practising self-care and self-love.

16. Reply to your personal email messages. Take 5-20 minutes, to scroll through your inbox and reply to any outstanding emails that are adding weight to that already heavy mental load of motherhood!

17. Get some sunshine (weather permitting!) Sit out in the sun for 5-10 minutes and enjoy your surroundings. Breathe, drink, listen to the sounds around you, read, people-watch, bird-watch, appreciate nature – whatever you can, and practice being grateful for something – anything!

18. Buy yourself a bunch of flowers from the grocery store while your thinking about the needs of everyone else. Enjoy giving them water and a vase when you get home, and place them somewhere you’ll appreciate them through the day. Smile.

19. Turn on your diffuser with Essential oils / burn a candle / incense while you sit and read in peace for a few minutes.

20. Wash and cleanse your face. You may even use a face mask if you have one. Feel fresh, clean and invigorated. It’s a lovely feeling to care for your skin.

21. De-clutter ONE spot in your house you’ve been meaning to get to. I promise you’ll feel much lighter once it’s done!

22. Take the time to write that email to an old friend/ family member you’ve been meaning to get in touch with.

23. Put on your favourite tunes, or think back to a wonderful era in your life and seek out those songs to listen to.

24. Take the time to hug your loved ones – loving, long, squeezes to get those happy bonding hormones released through your brain and body.

25. Soak your feet in a foot bath /small tub with some epsom salts (magnesium) to help relax your muscles – a lovely way to unwind after a long day.


Wendy Gilroy is a Mother of 2, and a professional Counsellor for women. Wendy has a degree in Psychology, a Masters degree in Addiction Studies, and a Diploma of Counselling. She lives in Sydney, Australia, and offers secure ONLINE counselling for women around the world, as well as telephone, face-to-face and home visit services for  mums.

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Disclaimer: This is for information purposes only. If you have any concerns about your physical or mental health, please consult your healthcare practitioner for medical advice.