American women tend to prioritize other people’s needs above their own. When those women are mothers, their needs fall even further down on their own to-do list. With today’s so-called “over-scheduled” kids, and more and more women (and men) finding themselves in the sandwich generation, many women, especially mothers, neglect their own needs.
In The Now Habit, psychologist and author, Neil Fiore maintains that guilt-free play—i.e. taking care of yourself—is essential to a highly productive life. And everyone from Oprah to WebMD to Psychology Today have articles about the benefits of more “me time” in our lives.
The web is littered with articles, tips and tricks about how and why we—especially women, especially moms—should take more time for our own needs. If it were easy to do, we wouldn’t need so many people telling, reminding, cajoling us to make time for ourselves.
The problem is that American women are living with unrealistic expectations. Sometimes called the “supermom syndrome,” it’s the expectation we often place on ourselves to have it all, and to do it perfectly: the perfect (and perfectly clean) house, if we work, the perfect job, perfect quality time with our kids, a perfect relationship with our spouse, etc. And then when we aren’t perfect, when, in fact, we are perfectly human, we become depressed, angry with ourselves (or our spouses, or our kids, or our jobs), and push our own needs even further down.
Obviously, some time in the sauna or the fitness center is not going to solve the perfectionist problem, but it sure can’t hurt! Mothers’ Day has got all of us at the JCC thinking about the ways we can help moms carve out a little time for themselves.
We offer tons of group exercise classes each week—an opportunity to exercise and to have fun with new or old friends. Drop-in babysitting is available for moms with kids aged 6 weeks to 12 years. The JCC has both steam rooms and saunas available (with or without a workout!).
We’re also ramping up for Camp JCC this summer, which can be a great option for working moms to feel good about their kids’ daily activities, or can give stay-at-home moms some time to make themselves a priority.
This Mothers Day, show Mom your love by helping her make time for herself. She deserves it! The Simon Family JCC is here to help.