As a mom, you probably prioritize everyone else before you prioritize your own needs. That also probably means you have lost touch with some of your friends. If that is the case, a Mom Night out is likely furthest from your mind. The problem is that when you let friendships take a back seat, you are also letting yourself take a back seat. Stop telling your friends you will take a raincheck on doing something together and make time for a Mom Night out. It is worth it for these 5 (if not more!) reasons.
A Mom Night out can be two different things. Mom’s Night can be a few hours when you go out by yourself and spend some time doing something on your own. Maybe you get a coffee and take a leisurely stroll through your favorite store (imagine taking all the time you want to smell every single candle or touch every single pillow and throw blanket in the home section). You could get a pedicure or get lunch somewhere and not have to worry about taking anyone to the bathroom or entertaining anyone. You could even take a walk or simply go to the park and read a book for a little while.
A Mom Night out can also look like you and some of your girlfriends (they can be mom friends or non-mom friends) going out to dinner, taking some sort of fun class, getting drinks, or going to a concert together.
Either way, you are taking some time for yourself. “You time” does not have to be alone time. It just needs to be time where you get to focus on your wants and needs and not the needs of your entire family. Everyone needs some personal space – personal space that does not involve locking yourself in the bathroom while your kids stand outside the door asking if you know where their shoes are. Taking time for yourself is linked to increased happiness, reduced stress, better focus and improved memory.
There are times when it is hard to remember who you are apart from being a mother. It is so easy as a mom to get lost in raising your children and taking care of your family. That is why it is important to regularly take a step back and remember who you are as a person, aside from who you are as a mom. This is important because having a sense of who you are is linked to higher self-esteem. It is also important for your sense of happiness. Knowing who you are – both as a mom and as a singular person – can help you understand what you want your life to look like now and in the future.
Being a mom is wonderful and fulfilling. Lots of people love that their kids are their world. There is nothing wrong with that. But you are more than a mom. You are a woman. Maybe you are a sibling, a college graduate, an artist, a runner, a musician, an animal enthusiast. Whatever those other parts of you are, they are also important. Making time for a Mom Night out can help keep you in touch with those other parts of yourself and help you feel more fulfilled, happier, and balanced.
Obviously, one of the major benefits of having a regular Mom Night out with friends is that it helps you foster those important friendships in your life. Everyone needs some time now and then to hang out with their friends, laughing and having a good time. Too many times, moms allow the hustle and bustle of motherhood and running a household to take them away from the people who are important to them. But you need those people in your life and they need you too.
Women especially need time with their friends. That is because friendships and socialization help women cope with stress. So you see, having a Mom Night out with your closest friends is good for your mental health!
Beyond friendship, a Mom Night out gives you a sense of community. You get to swap parenting stories and relationship stories. You get to commiserate about school drop-off lines and how hard homework is getting now that you have a middle schooler. You can talk about struggling with being a new parent or about how hard it has been to go back to work. Whatever it is you are going through, your mom friends have gone or are going through similar if not the same things.
This is an important component of friendship and in making time for a regular Mom Night out. It provides you the opportunity to get away from your kids and your partner and talk to your mom friends who know exactly what you are going through. This sense of community helps prevent you from feeling isolated and alone, which can be easy when you are a mom – especially a new mom who feels overwhelmed with everything.
Physical and Mental Health
In a study at the University of Oxford, researchers found that women’s health and well-being improved when they spent time with their friends twice a week to do things like get a drink, gossip, and laugh together. The benefits from these regular meetups included a stronger immune system, faster recovery times from illness, decreased anxiety, and increased generosity.
So you are actually physically and mentally healthier if you schedule a regular Mom Night out than if you make an excuse to skip out and stay home.
It is easy to make excuses for skipping out on planning or going on a Mom Night out. You are too busy. You are tired. You don’t have a babysitter or you should spend time with your partner. Sometimes any and all of those things are true. But it is important to make time for yourself and make time to cultivate your friendships. It doesn’t have to be an event that goes into the wee hours of the night. Grabbing drinks after work one day or meeting for lunch on a Saturday is all it takes.
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