Being an involved and attentive parent is important, however, it is also important to take care of yourself. Whether you are a working parent or a stay-at-home parent, being a parent can be exhausting. Just like on the airplane, it’s important to put your oxygen mask on first. You matter too.

Self-care, as parents, increases your resources to be a better parent. Take time for yourself. Your whole day shouldn’t be about your child. Still need convincing? Research shows that children develop better when they have free time. Being alone with the self, happily occupied, is a maker of mental health.

Taking care of yourself is good parenting. You’re modeling self-care. So, your kids are less likely to develop anxiety and depression. You’re increasing expectations that your child will be interpersonally flexible, easygoing, and adaptive.

Now that you know the benefits of taking care of yourself, give it a try this week! Experiment to find ways to fill your own cup. Call a friend, go for a walk, take a nap, or just eat a wholesome meal in silence. You deserve health and your child will benefit from a happy, healthy you!