Self-Care Tips for Parents

As a parent, it’s important that you take care of yourself! If you’re like most moms and dads, you need to be told that it’s okay to take time to take care of yourself. Practicing self-care is actually a very important step to becoming a better parent.

Self-care includes the simplest, physical things – like making sure we get enough sleep and eating healthy meals. But it also includes more emotional, social, psychological, creative/artistic, and even spiritual time for ourselves.


  • Eat regularly in healthy ways
  • Get exercise
  • Receive regular, preventive medical care
  • Sleep enough
  • Take time away from the phone, email, TV, etc.
  • Spend time outdoors in fresh air and natural light


  • Spend time with friends and family
  • Stay in touch with others
  • Express emotions, allow yourself to cry and find things that make you happy
  • Read for pleasure (not work)
  • Work on your marriage or other relationships
  • Say no to extra responsibilities


  • Give yourself quiet time to meditate
  • Attend a local place of worship
  • Write in a diary
  • Spend time outdoors
  • Enjoy a hobby or learn something new


What happens to a Parent when they don’t take care of themself?

When ANYONE stops taking care of him or herself, they put stress on their mind and body. This stress can lead to physical effects like a weaker immune system and high blood pressure, but it can also lead to mental effects such as depression and anger management issues. Plus, parenting can become an even greater challenge than it already is! It takes energy to be a good parent!

When we’re over-stressed and not taking care of ourselves, we can be irritable, exhausted, or sad. So on top of not taking care of ourselves, we cannot care for our children as we might otherwise be able to. But being a good parent takes patience, energy, and optimism.

It’s okay to ask for help. Sometimes taking care of yourself means asking other adults for help. Getting another adult to support you can be a big help in making self-care a long-lasting part of your life!

What happens to a Child when a parent does not take care of him/herself?

We set an example that not taking care of yourself is okay and that things like healthy eating habits, respecting our bodies, and relationships with partners are not important.


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Between Us is a grant-funded program from the Minnesota Department of Health and the City of Minneapolis. 

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