Frugal self-care tips for moms and women. One of my goals this year (actually, my only goal) is to enjoy the moment. I’ve spent the last five years of my life hustling and running around. I’ve had three baby girls, moved across the country, was a freelance writer/editor, worked full-time, built this blog, bought a house, quit my full-time job to focus on this blog, and more. Phew, just typing that out makes me exhausted!!! So, this year, I’m saying goodbye to the never ending to-do lists and hello to freedom and doing what I want! And a big part of that is taking better care of myself. Here are 10 frugal self-care tips I’ve adapted along the way.
Frugal Self-care Tips
Make your health a priority
I recently re-joined the YMCA. While it’s not free, it’s definitely the most frugal option around here. For me and my three kids, it’s $72/month. I looked into joining a few other gyms but just couldn’t justify the $200+/month price tag. I was a member of the Y last summer and while I probably worked out a little too much, I felt so much happier and healthier. This time around, I plan on going when it works. I’m not “committing” to going every day or even three times a week. I’m simply going when it works with mine and my kid’s schedules.
If you can’t join a gym, I recommend doing 10-minute HIIT workouts or other workouts you can find on YouTube for free. Or, go for a walk around your neighborhood, ask a friend to go play tennis, or go on a hike! There are tons of ways to get your body moving that don’t cost a dime!
Put more time into meals
I think every family in America probably eats out too much, and the main reason is because we are so darn busy. Cooking becomes a chore where we rush through the process, then eat and clean up as quickly as possible so we can move on to our next “task.” Instead, give yourself the proper time to prepare a yummy meal. Turn on some music, set the kids up with a TV show or art project, wipe down the kitchen before you begin, and go! I totally realize this cannot happen every single night, but cooking can actually be a huge stress reliever if you allow it to be.
Realize it’s OK not to “do all the things”
When it comes to self-care, this one was the biggest for me. I don’t HAVE to have my day jam-packed with commitment after commitment. My girls are currently in one activity (gymnastics), and we rarely have weekend plans. I encourage you to give yourself grace when it comes to your life. If you want to skip the dishes one night in favor of a hot bath, do it! If saying “no” to a commitment allows you to live a less stressful life, by all means say no! Instead of filling your day with “must-do’s,” fill it with things you want to do.
Have a good attitude
I totally realize most of us can’t fill our entire day with things we want to do. Ha, wouldn’t that be nice! The fact of the matter is our families have to eat, we have to go to work (or somehow make money), we need to stay on top of the laundry and dishes, we need to make time for the people in our lives we love, and so on and so forth. But, instead of begrudgingly getting through the things you “have” to do in order to make room for the things you want to do, do so with a grateful heart. You’re most likely working so you can provide your family with a good quality of life. You cook and clean for your kids and spouse that you’re so blessed to have. And, you have a body that allows you to do all of that with ease. Life is good, guys, we just have to try our best to maintain a positive attitude.
Spend time in the evening doing something just for you
When I was a kid, I loved doing variety puzzles. I could spend all day going through those books. As an adult, I stopped doing them because it seemed like such a waste of time. I mean, I’m not making any money by doing them, I’m not helping my marriage or bettering my relationship with my kids, so what’s the point? Well, just last week I picked up a variety puzzle book at the store (I know, I realize I’m a huge dork) and have been spending about 20 minutes in the evening doing them. This small thing has brought me so much joy!! It’s kind of sad, actually, hahah, but I love them! Find something you like to do and make the time for it!
Let’s all admit we feel better about ourselves when we look beautiful! I’ve always done my make-up every day, but admired women who always had freshly-painted nails. I mean, who has the time for that?!? Well, this year I’m going to make the time. It really only takes 10 minutes and I can work on the computer while they’re drying. What’s one thing you could do to pamper yourself a bit more?
Don’t sweat the small stuff
Mental health plays such a crucial role in how we feel about ourselves and our lives. And I believe focusing on our mental health should be a top priority when it comes to frugal self-care tips. I am a planner by nature, and don’t like it when plans change or get messed up. A recent example is our grocery budget. I try really hard to stick to a certain amount per week – this includes groceries, eating out, Starbucks, etc. If we go over, I tend to get all flustered and stressed out. Recently, I’ve realized this just isn’t worth getting worked up over. If I spend a bit more in groceries, we’ll simply spend less in another area. Or, I can opt to work a bit more online and make up the difference. But really, spending an extra $10/week on groceries isn’t something to get stressed out about.
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Drink plenty of water
Such a simple thing, but the benefits of drinking water are huge! They include clearer skin, a healthier immune system, more energy, and a better mood! I aim to drink the recommend eight glasses per day.
If you’re not happy, make a change
Don’t like where you live? Make a plan to move. Aren’t happy in your marriage? Do the things in your power to make it better. Stuck in a dead-end job? Start a side hustle! But, know that it takes time to build a legit business or blog from home. Don’t stress yourself out over your side jobs or expect to quit your full-time job within a few months. Instead, enjoy the journey. Whatever phase of life you are in, slow down and enjoy the ride.
I’ve worked a few full-time desk jobs and hated not having control over my own time. If you want to work on your own time, two really good careers are freelancing and blogging. I’ve done both, so feel free to ask me any questions you may have. Freelancing will make you money immediately, but blogging will make you money long-term and once you get it going, it’s easy to keep up the momentum with significantly less work.
Take a break from social media
If you instantly want to feel better about your life, go on a social media cleanse. I quit using Facebook for a year and had never felt better. I had more time, and my brain wasn’t being filled with things and events I really didn’t need to know about. Now I use Facebook for blogging purposes, but still find myself getting sucked in. I’m hoping 2018 will be the year of less social media nonsense and more real life relationships.
What frugal self-care tips do you have? Please share in the comments!