As a mom who works full-time outside of the home, finding ways to unwind after a particularly long week is absolutely essential. When moms shared their favorite ways to unwind with me, I realized two things: we all have our preferred methods, some healthier than others, and I need to get back to the gym. I used to love going to the gym; it was an hour to myself during which I forgot about all of my worries and just concentrated on keeping the right form and sweating out all of those extra calories. Then, when I started a new job, scheduling gym time became damn-near impossible and, as a result, actually caused more stress than it relieved. So, for better or worse, I took a step back and eliminated it. Now I unwind by just watching my favorite shows with either a glass of wine or a cup of freshly brewed coffee.
Last week seemed like a week straight from the depths of hell. I don't know if it was a full moon or what, but my students were slightly losing their minds, I was overwhelmed with the massive amount of work I had in front of me, the quarter was over, grades were due, and we had two faculty meetings. It was one of those weeks. When I came home from work on Friday night, after a much needed Happy Hour with my coworkers, I drank a glass of wine and went straight to bed. I couldn't handle life at that very moment and needed to just close my eyes and shut everything and everyone out. I felt awful not hanging out with my kids or my husband on a Friday night, but there was nothing I could have done to relax other than going straight to bed.
In a society where women feel constant pressure to be perfect, being able to actually unwind sometimes feels nearly impossible. Even when I take some time to myself, I feel such guilt, and I constantly think about all of the things I should be doing instead, like laundry, or making dinner, or cleaning up, or spending time with my children. Every time I do something for myself, I feel like I am taking away from my family, and that feeling never really seems to go away. But me time is absolutely necessary and if you need tips of how to unwind, check out what these moms had to say: