The Importance of “Me Time”: Why Moms Need to Prioritize Their Mental Health


The article is developed in partnership with BetterHelp.

Motherhood can feel like a juggling act. Tiny hands tugging, chores piling up, appointments buzzing on your phone. Amidst this swirling dance, where do you fit in? How do you nurture yourself? “Me time” might feel impossible, but it’s the very thing that will replenish your strength and joy.

There may be no experience more profoundly moving than bringing new life into the world. Yet, it’s also intensely demanding, stretching your mental and emotional resources. When you are constantly giving outward, you risk burnout, frustration, and even sadness.

Prioritizing your mental health as a new mom isn’t a luxury. Rather, it’s an investment in your ability to thrive within this extraordinary role. This article explores why “me time” matters so deeply and how you can make it a reality even when your schedule feels too full.

The Power of “Me Time”


Just as a beautiful garden requires nurturing to blossom with vibrant life, so too does your mental and emotional well-being. Your garden needs sunshine, water, and regular care to flourish. “Me time” provides those precious elements, allowing you to blossom as an individual and a mother. Here’s how those quiet respites can transform you:

  • Stress reduction and increased calm: Motherhood is a marathon, not a sprint, and chronic stress has a way of creeping in. “Me time,” even in small doses, signals to your body and mind that it’s safe to rest, releasing tension and cultivating a sense of peace.
  • Greater patience and compassion: When your well of patience runs dry, it’s hard to extend grace to your children or to yourself. “Me time” helps you feel more centered and grounded, giving you space to respond from love rather than reactivity.
  • Improved overall health and well-being: Taking care of yourself isn’t just about your emotions. “Me time” can be anything that nourishes your body and soul — a brisk walk, yoga class, or a warm cup of tea. These moments of self-care can boost your energy, improve sleep, and elevate your mood, benefiting you on every level.

For mothers living with mental health conditions such as borderline personality disorder, taking time for self-care can be an especially important way to manage the challenges you face each day. BPD can bring intense emotional swings, fears of abandonment, and increased sensitivity. Motherhood’s natural ups and downs can feel even more overwhelming. “Me time” offers a safe place to land during these moments. It’s an opportunity to catch your breath, learn healthier coping skills, and gain perspective when emotions threaten to overwhelm you.

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Overcoming the Obstacles to “Me Time”


We all know “me time” isn’t a guaranteed part of motherhood. It may require some trial and error to carve out space for yourself at first. Here are some common challenges you might experience and how to overcome them:

  • Guilt: Society often whispers that good moms are martyrs, putting everyone else’s needs first. However, a happy, healthy mom is a gift to your family. Prioritizing your well-being models self-care for your children.
  • Logistics: Family life is a beautiful jumble. Intentional planning is often necessary. You can schedule “me time” on your calendar like a non-negotiable appointment, even if it’s just 15 minutes at a time.
  • Lack of support: You don’t have to do this alone. Be honest with your partner, family, and friends about your need for respite. Delegate tasks, trade childcare with other moms, and accept offers of help without apology.

Strategies for Making “Me Time” a Reality

You can make “me time” a realistic part of your daily routine. Start small and celebrate your victories. Let’s explore practical ways to bring those precious moments of self-care into your routine:

  • The power of small wins: There’s no need for grand gestures. “Me time” can be a stolen walk around the block, deep breaths while dinner cooks, or reading a few pages before falling asleep.
  • Delegate and ask for help: Superhero capes aren’t a necessary part of motherhood. Let your partner take over bathtime, ask a friend to pick up the kids, or accept a meal from a loved one.
  • Boundaries with love: Saying “no” is a powerful act of self-preservation. Set gentle but firm boundaries with others to protect your energy and nourish yourself.

Creative Ideas for “Me Time”


The beauty of “me time” lies in its endless adaptability. Here are some ideas to jumpstart your imagination. Remember, you can tailor them to your own unique passions and interests:

  • Rediscover your creative spark: Did you love to paint, dance, write, or play music before motherhood? Tap back into those creative outlets. Joy and self-expression can be rejuvenating. Who cares if your painting isn’t gallery-worthy?
  • Pamper yourself:  A luxurious bath, a DIY pedicure, or a soothing face mask are simple acts that send a powerful message: you are worthy of care.
  • Get moving: Exercise is nature’s magic potion for stress and low mood. Hike, swim, join a dance class, try that boxing workout you’ve always eyed — anything that gets your heart pumping and your spirit soaring.
  • The power of connection:  Motherhood can feel isolating. Coffee dates with other moms, online communities, or simply a heart-to-heart with a trusted friend may help. These connections fill you up and remind you that you’re not alone in this journey.

Be Kind to Yourself

Sometimes, finding “me time” feels impossible. There will be days when exhaustion wins, or illness strikes, or the kids meltdown in tandem. Show yourself compassion when you stumble. Sometimes, “me time” might look like 5 minutes of conscious breathing or crying it out to a loved one. Progress over perfection is a mantra you can live by.

As you steadily incorporate “me time” into your routine, watch for those subtle shifts. Your capacity to handle stress will likely increase, and your reservoir of love may deepen. Celebrate those small victories as they fuel big changes from within.

When You Need More Help


“Me time” can be a helpful tool for mental well-being, but sometimes it’s not enough. If you are experiencing persistent anxiety or overwhelming sadness, or if you find it difficult to cope, never hesitate to seek professional help. Therapists and counselors provide a safe haven to explore your emotions and build beneficial coping strategies.

Your value doesn’t depend on your endless capacity to give. It’s written in the depths of your heart, in the fierce way you protect your little ones, in the way your eyes soften when they smile. You are not just a mother. You are an individual with needs, dreams, and a beautiful soul yearning to thrive. Nurture that person. Honor those whispers from within. And watch how the light you cultivate illuminates every corner of your life.

Written by Alana Harrington