Ten Minute Challenge for Moms

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Ten minutes is about how long it takes to get a thrashing toddler buckled in their carseat.  And that’s also how long it takes to checkout at Target when you go there for only one thing.  ONE THING.  And you leave with 20 things you found in the clearance aisle.  Ten minutes is how long it takes to bake chocolate chip cookies in the oven.  And that’s how long it takes to get from one side of Waco to the other (Humor me here).  And ten minutes is all you need to get a little “me” time every single day.

We have a little girl who is 7.  I know what you’re thinking. . . .one?  ONE?  One child?  That’s it?  Oh man she has it easy!  And I laugh.  I laugh so hard.  Because instead of being “just” a mom, I also take on the role of sibling because our poor child needs someone to play with as well.  So I play. ALOT.  I jump on the trampoline, run around the yard, ride bikes, swing on the swingset, play Barbies, dolls, Legos, games. . . . .I could keep going.  Even as I write this, she will not leave my side.  As an extrovert, she would prefer to be glued to me, and I don’t understand that because as an introvert, I love being alone and would spend hours playing with toys or playing outside by myself as a child.  I have spent years trying to teach her the value of independent play.  She is finally at the point where she will do it on occasion.  But it is not her favorite thing.  I actually have to schedule it, otherwise she would never leave my side.  So here we are.  A worn out introvert and a happy as a clam extrovert.  Two peas in a pod.

As you can imagine, spending a full day together can be exhausting for me.  Even though I carve out independent play time, she is constantly wanting to be with me.  EVERYWHERE.  I can’t pee alone or eat my chocolate in the closet alone or pick my nose alone.  She sees it all.  And since every season with a child is different, I have had times where I enjoyed wonderful me time every day. (Ahhhhh nap time.  How I miss thee).  And then there is our present reality.  She is awake ALL DAY LONG.  And we homeschool.  I have been needing some time away, but I can never seem to find time.  I can always find something more important to do than me time.  Me time always comes last.  But not anymore!

Recently it dawned on me to take advantage of any moment when my daughter is preoccupied on her own or is with my husband.  While she was doing that yesterday, I sprinted to the bathroom and grabbed my nail file, cuticle pusher backer(what are those things called anyway???) and lotion.  For the first time in well over a year, I pushed back my cuticles and put lotion on my hands.  It’s the little things.  Hahahaha!  And it was so good.    I trimmed my nails and made them look decent.  It took 10 minutes.  And it totally refreshed me.  Now when I look at my nails, I don’t cringe and think, “I really need to do something about that”.  Now I smile and remember those 10 minutes that I took to do something completely selfish.  All for me!  And if you’re wondering, she did walk in saying, “mommy. . . .where are you mommy?”  And I replied, “I am doing something for myself right now.  I’m taking 10 minutes, and I need you to let me do this without interruption.”  She didn’t like it, but it’s important.  Everything we do teaches them about life.  And I hope she learned that I value myself too and she should take care of herself by finding 10 “me” minutes every day when she is a mom.  Maybe it also taught her to give me some space because Lord knows I need it!  

So I want to challenge you today! Look for a moment when all the children are busy doing something and steal 10 minutes for yourself.  Don’t clean.  Don’t wash dishes.  Don’t do laundry.  And don’t you dare feel guilty about it. You aren’t allowed to say, “I should be doing XYZ instead.”  You need this.  

Here are some ideas:

  1. Find a quiet room and read 2 pages of a book you have been wanting to read
  2. Paint your nails
  3. Watch a few funny cat videos on YouTube (come on. . . admit it.  you know you enjoy them)
  4. Lay down and listen to a few of your favorite songs
  5. Sit outside and just listen to nature 
  6. Hide in the closet and eat chocolate (my all time favorite pastime)
  7. Play an instrument (piano, guitar, etc)
  8. Write about your day in a journal
  9. Read your Bible
  10. Pray
  11. Have your favorite hobby always ready to go so you can put 10 minutes of work into it when you’re able to slip away.  I did this with scrapbooking back when it was cool.
    🙂 But you could do it with cross stitch, knitting, or whatever!
  12. Draw/paint

I want to know how you are doing with this challenge. If you have more ideas, please share below.  And then share with us how you found your 10 minutes today!

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