Book Review | Put Yourself First [Gifted]

Put Yourself First, Book, Self Care, Dining Room,
Maybe you find yourself in one of the following groups:
a)    busy working mum (or without kids but juggling multiple projects)
b)    a PCOS sufferer
c)    tired, overwhelmed or stressed
d)    never have any ‘you’ time
e)    all of the above

Or perhaps you’re like me and very much in that final bracket! Well, if you found yourself nodding your head there, I highly recommend Put Yourself First by Marianne Killick. I was kindly gifted a copy of the self-care book, courtesy of the lovely Helen at Book Printing UK (I’ve worked with her before on my blog), and I can honestly say, it’s full of life-changing advice. There were so many tips I picked up, but also so much I learnt – who knew the impact failing to look after yourself could have on all different parts of your body – not just your mind.

I’ll be totally honest here and say I don’t have much time – juggling a 9-5 job, the nursery run, doing all the evening tasks like making dinner and washing up and tidying up. Obviously, it’s a bit different now we are in these strange circumstances, and I do find myself getting time to myself. But even before I went back to work, being a stay at home mum was time-consuming and actually quite draining – and not for me, as much as I wanted it to be. It obviously didn’t help that I had moved, and basically lost my old circle of friends (bar one or two) and making new friends in a new town in difficult. It’s fair to say I’m in a much better place now.

But similarly, before I had my little family, I had so many hobbies: I had time to blog, I loved fine dining and afternoon tea. When my dad was around, we went to football together, and to gigs and the theatre and things. Obviously time changes, people change and interests change – but I don’t think I could list any hobbies anymore. I enjoy cooking but I am also the designated chef in the house and some nights I feel it’s more a chore than a hobby. We dedicate two nights a week to reading – usually in bed, and between 10-10:30pm. I’ve been trying for ages to dedicate one night a week to pampering myself – but I simply don’t have the time. But, in reality, I probably do.

Marianne makes it clear that putting yourself first isn’t selfish – and I guess to an extent, I always thought it was. I’m quite happy being in my little bubble and ensuring the boys’ needs are met before mine. Happy home, happy mummy and all that. She recommends delegating tasks, getting the whole family to help. I think we are pretty good at sharing the workload. Ash does the mornings, I do the evenings – it works for us. But it also means I don’t get time in the evenings, if Alfie doesn’t go to bed. More importantly, she explains the impact of stress, strain and tiredness (read: frazzled) has on our organs – as I say, it’s not just our minds, but our liver, gut, ovaries – the lot!

It’s a lot to take on board, but really is an eye-opener. I’ve learnt so much from the book and look forward to putting it into practice. Talking of which, there are plenty of tasks and activities  throughout the book, which all help. Think planning your time better, reflecting on your past and thinking about the future, setting goals, and remember to take time-out but also plan your social calendar. It’s all really useful – and a lot of it is about balance.

Put Yourself First is split into different sections, but each comes together, always with you in mind. We all deserve self-care and we deny ourselves it, by being too busy or simply not prioritising tasks. None of us are perfect and we all have different areas we need to focus on. For me, it’s not exercising enough and some days, not drinking enough water. Both probably impact my sleeping pattern – or more specifically, my inability to go to sleep at night. Sometimes we just need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. I know I’ll certainly be putting myself first more in the future. In fact, I’ve managed to write this post while Alfie’s asleep on the sofa and Ash is watching The Repair Shop.

Thank you Marianne and Helen for the opportunity to work together – it really was a fabulous read, and one that will remain on my bedside table. If you’d like to purchase Put Yourself First, you can do via Amazon.

Love, Lucy xx

*Thank you to Bloggers Required and Helen Naylor at Book Printing UK for sending me Put Yourself First FOC for review purposes. Images and opinions are 100% my own.

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Love, Lucy xx

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