Self-Care Tips for Moms on a LOW Budget
When I was a new mom, money was tight and therefore all of it went to important things like bills and the kids. Not only did we just not have the money to spend, but when I did, I felt real mom guilt thinking of all the other things we could do with that money.
When you become a mom, it almost becomes second nature to put yourself last and sacrifice things so that your kids don’t have to go without.
How many times have you gone out to buy something for yourself and came back with something for your kids instead?
How many times have you put something in our online cart only to change your mind?
How many times have you wanted something but chosen not to get it because you knew there would be something *more important* that your family might need?
I am guessing a lot.
And the pandemic has changed so much. Food, fuel, and housing costs have skyrocketed. Issues with the supply chain of many necessities have made prices soar. The general uncertainty of the world has made saving even more of a priority for families who want a safeguard for the future.
Many people have lost their jobs, and alarmingly the statistics show more women have lost their jobs than men. According to Forbes, “The pandemic has reinforced traditional gender roles, shunting women back into the role of homemaker, a role that we’ve historically faced immense difficulty escaping.” That matters because it means many women feel they don’t deserve to spend money on themselves- not true by the way.
So many of us already feel guilty taking the time away from our families to practise self care (though we shouldn’t), but now many more are feeling as though they don’t have the right or the means to pay for their self care. Mom’s contribute so much to their families and deserve to fill their own cups!
Self-care CAN be expensive. Aside from the fact that getting a break often means hiring paid childcare; beauty products, eating out, entertainment, hotels, skincare, exercise equipment and programs, and wellness items all cost money.
But you CAN practise self-care on a budget, here’s how:
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Things You Can Do If You Are a Mom On a Budget
1. Set aside a monthly budget specifically for Self-Care
It sounds so simple but it needs to be done. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but taking the preemptive step to allocating funds towards your own needs and desires is the big first step and shows you are choosing to prioritize you. You are going to feel a lot less like you are taking money from your family when it was already set aside in the first place and when you go to spend that money, you won’t feel as much like you are taking away from your family. And remember, you too are a part of your family and are deserving of nice experiences and things.
2. Make Your Money Stretch for Maximum Self-Care
If you are living on a tight budget you likely already know so many hacks for saving money in life and especially as a parent. But do you know how to make your self-care money stretch?
Reusable: Purchase items that can be used multiple times as opposed to disposable or temporary things. Think ice globes for your face, a satin pillowcase for more luxurious nap time or this milk frother to make fancy coffees at home, or these neat reusable under eye masks.
Lasting: Do things that have a more lasting impact on your overall mental state, happiness and well-being. Like getting your nails done and enjoying them for days or weeks after, or purchasing an audiobook that is going to be continuously helpful in bringing you peace, or buy a journal with 365 days of gratitude prompts. Do things that will leave an impact for more than the moment you are actually doing it.
Paired with free: So you really want that $6 starbucks drink that will only last 30 minutes? Fine. But take a friend and have a great life giving conversation or go alone to an outdoor park/trail or free museum or long winding car ride and listen to your favourite music. Take the thing that costs $$ and doesn’t last and make the feeling last. Fancy body scrub you’ve been dying to purchase? Pair it with a long hot bath and make it luxurious.
Trade Self-Care With Other Moms and Women in Your life
Feeling really stuck on how to spend the little money you do have and feeling like it just won’t do enough to make a difference? Make a pact. Find a friend and swap childcare by taking turns to go out for free. Let your friend use your audible membership to listen to an audiobook she’s been wanting to hear while you try out some of the new exfoliant she just bought a tub of. Find ways that you can help each other out with what you have and see how you can make it stretch.
Self-care for Moms is Harder But not Impossible on a Budget
Living on a tight budget, especially as a mom, is hard. We want to give our kids the best life we can. And if you are momming without a support system, self-care is even harder.
But mama, you matter too. You deserve to feel nurtured and loved and cared for and human. You deserve some of the energy and resources you pour into your family. So allow yourself the budget and then make it work for you. Adjust when needed but never stop believing that you are worth it and that it matters.
I hope this blog has helped you believe that you deserve self care and that it’s possible even with a small budget. Please share this with a friend and let me know in the comments what you do to practise self care on a budget.
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