When you fly on an airplane, the flight attendant gives you clear instructions about what to do in case of an emergency. One of the most important things they tell you is to put your oxygen mask on first before assisting other people. Of course, logically, that makes sense. If we run out of oxygen ourselves, we can’t help anyone else.
But as a parent, that can feel hard to accept. Our first instinct in every situation is to take care of our children before ourselves. I know that I am so used to caring for my kids’ never-ending needs that I often forget I have some of my own. It makes me feel completely selfish, even to consider putting that oxygen mask on myself first. Does anyone else feel that way?
Modern American society has conditioned us to think that a “good” parent sacrifices their own care to make sure they meet their children’s needs. After all, our biological wiring leads us to protect our offspring to ensure the survival of the species.
But most of us go far beyond meeting the necessary biological requirements of our children. We often give up our social life, friendships, career choices, and more to give our kids a chance at the best experience possible.
We even put our self-care at the bottom of the list of important things. Sadly, many parents don’t put themselves anywhere on the list at all. Many parents tend to fall into the habit of thinking, “I’ll do something for myself when I have enough time/money/energy.” But somehow that time never comes.
If you happen to be the parent of a child with special needs, you absolutely understand how deep the needs go. Between school meetings, doctor appointments, therapies, and sleepless nights, time for some mom-care is practically non-existent.
What happens when you continue to take care of your family while neglecting your needs and care?
The relentless cycle of caring for others without respite can lead to many problems for a parent:
Feeling on edge
Even with all of these problems, the idea of self-care STILL feels selfish. It can feel like you are stealing resources from others to help yourself. For many parents, especially moms, it makes them feel guilty about choosing self-care once in a while.
It’s time to recognize that self-care is a gift to your family. When you take care of your needs, you feel happier, more energized, and more patient. Who benefits from all this? Your family, of course! By filling up your own tank, you can do even more for your kids! When you realize that self-care makes you a better mom, it doesn’t feel so selfish anymore.
I discovered NeurOptimal® neurofeedback when I felt at my lowest. It only took a few sessions to realize that this support was a gift to my family. By giving myself the gift of brain training, I was rejecting my habit of feeling like a victim who was stuck spinning her wheels.
I became happy and relaxed. I started to joke and laugh at my own mistakes. Everyday issues no longer felt like huge mountains to climb. I wasn’t snapping at my children. Instead, I could enjoy my time with them.
Neurofeedback for brain training is not only for your loved ones. I encourage you to train yourself so that you can be the best version of you possible. Your self-care has the added benefit of boosting your family’s well-being too.
Schedule your appointment today and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with taking care of your needs.
Your family will thank you for it.