CLEVELAND – Mother’s Day is just around the corner and if you haven’t gotten your mom anything yet, you may want to consider giving her the gift of time.
According to a survey from Cleveland Clinic and Parade Media, about two-fifths of parents say they’d like to take mental and emotional health breaks but haven’t been able to find the time.
“Moms are so used to caring for others and are used to putting themselves last and a lot of times it’s just because they want to, not because they feel they have to, but there’s just this strong pull to want to take care of their loved ones,” said Kia-Rai Prewitt, PhD, psychologist for Cleveland Clinic. “And because they do take care of themselves last, it would be nice if someone could recognize that she deserves a break.”
Dr. Prewitt said while it’s noble to want to take care of everyone else, it’s important for moms to have time for themselves, otherwise they may start to feel burned out.
When it comes to self-care, there are all kinds of ways to relax, but some ideas include taking a bubble bath, lighting candles, doing some relaxation exercises, like deep breathing, reading a book or going for a walk. The key is finding activities that make you feel good.
In addition to giving your mom the gift of time, Dr. Prewitt said acts of service can also be meaningful.
For example, you could clean the house, take care of the laundry, go grocery shopping or make dinner.
“Taking some of the responsibilities off of moms, not just for that one day, hopefully it can become routine to just offer help because a lot of times mom might not ask for that help,” said Dr. Prewitt.
She encourages moms to seek out counseling if they notice they are having a hard time managing their stress or need help with their mental health.