Looking after yourself is an important part of being a great parent for your kids.  Especially if you have a difficult co-parent.

If you are stressed, tired, overwhelmed, or completely burnt out, it can feel impossible to give your kids the kind of attention they need to thrive.

Be careful though. By attempting self-care, you might actually be practicing self-indulgence instead.

So what’s the difference?

Self-care is looking after your own physical and emotional needs in healthy ways. It can include things like eating healthy meals, reading a book before bed, going to the gym, or even meeting a friend for coffee.

Self-Care includes things that make you healthy, strong, and emotionally capable of raising your kids in a positive environment.

So what is self-indulgence then?

Self-indulgence includes behaviors that might feel positive but can actually hinder your well-being in the long run.

Self-indulgence could include things like eating a litre of ice cream when you’re stressed, shopping beyond your financial means, turning to the wine, or even spending too much time watching TV and scrolling social media.

If you participate in an activity that makes you feel proud, that’s self-care.

If you participate in an activity that makes you feel great for a short time, and then you feel guilty about it afterwards, that’s probably self-indulgence.

Learning the difference is crucial to being a happy & healthy parent for your kids and to reducing the stress of co-parenting with a difficult ex.