Wake up before your kids!
I know how much any extra minute of sleep counts, trust me, I literally haven't slept more than 3-4 hours in a row in four and a half years. I am exhausted to the max and cannot wait for the day/night of deep sleep. But for now, I am trying to take more advantage of the times I happen to wake up before the children do. I have known that this simple step can make such a huge impact on my entire day for years now, however I usually give in to the extra sleep. Lately though I've been waking up and getting out of bed before the children do, and I challenge you to do the same!
When you wake up before your children you gift yourself some "you" time, which you may not get once the children awake. You are able to start your day giving yourself some extra attention, focusing on your own needs and desires for the very moment, as well as the day. It is easy to be wakened at an unwanted time by a child and then to immediately start paying attention to their needs and forgetting and putting aside your own. However if you make it a point to wake up before them you are demanding that space for yourself.
With only thirty less minutes of sleep you can do so much, such as enjoy a warm cup of tea to yourself, practice yoga, take a shower and dress yourself, work out, paint, meditate, or anything you so wish. We all have practices that make us feel good, and its important as mothers that we keep granting ourself the time to do so. Waking up earlier than your children will give you some space to start your day for yourself. And sometimes those mornings very well may be spent washing dishes or preparing lunches for the kids, and thats okay! We all know doing some tasks without children around can be done in 3/4 the time, and thats efficient. Just try to see what you can do with thirty minutes of extra time, much less an hour or two! You will quickly find that you do not miss the extra sleep, and probably even much more energized.
When you are giving yourself fuel you are able to in return give more to your family and loved ones. When completely empty then eventually there will be breakdown and theres no reason to get to that point. By allowing yourself the time to spend starting your day with your own intentions, speed, and desires then more than likely you will go throughout your day more patient and focused. If you spent a little extra time giving in to your bodies need of exercise, or the moments of peace in a book, or meditation then you have more contentment and peace within and are able to give it back to your children as well.
It is a tough act as a mother, getting pulled in every which way of life. There's a reason all caregivers are reminded to put their own safety mask on before children's, because if we aren't taking care of ourselves we can't anyone around us. Take the leap out of bed when you hear the birds start to chirp, see what all you can gift yourself with before the children wake up and you start your selfless service. Serve yourself, love yourself, be yourself.