I would describe myself on most days as pretty high strung and always going at least 90 miles an hour on any given day. This seemed to work well for me for most of my life but earlier this year I was stopped dead in my tracks. As I mentioned in my previous Empower Hour post my oldest daughter started college last fall and it threw me for a complete loop. Little did I know the impact the changes were also having on my younger middle school age daughter. She started having severe anxiety as well as other challenges and just was not her self. As I️ worked to help my daughter learn better coping skills I️ began to look at my own strategies to handle stress and life’s many curve balls. We often do not realize the toll that life transitions and daily stresses can take on our bodies and spirits.
I️ am the queen of putting everyone else first and running on empty. I️ heard someone the other day talking about how we put more value on our cellphone batteries than we do on our own physical and mental well being. I️ thought about how we know where all the cell phone chargers are around our homes, in our cars and how quickly we can locate outlets when we are out and about. Low cell phone battery percentages can send us into panic mode. So let’s think about self care the way we charge our phones. Unfortunately we do not come with a low battery signal that alerts us when we are almost empty. It is important to be present with ourselves and check in internally on a daily and even hourly basis to see where we are.
Here are a few practices that I have worked into my daily routine to keep me charged up:
Yoga - I️ recently started taking yoga classes and learning new meditation techniques to keep myself calm. Although I am not flexible and totally look like a goof ball on my mat it helps me to get re-centered when I️ have a busy schedule or day. It has calmed me down quite a bit and I️ find that I now fight to stay in peace and calm versus going 90 miles an hour! I have definitely learned to breath more deeply and to stay in the moment.
Make Sleep & Rest a Priority - Get rest when you need it and don’t feel guilty! Over the Thanksgiving break I️ literally stayed in pajamas for two days over the break just relaxing, sleeping and spending time with my family. I️ learned recently that when you sleep and rest your cells rejuvenate and are restored nightly. I’m working on getting those famous 8 hours of sleep every night!
Unplug - Set aside time to unplug from electronics and get out in nature, rest, exercise or spend uninterrupted time with loved one or friends.
Healthy Diet/Water – What we put in our bodies is important. A balanced and nutritious diet can help us stay charged. When we are super busy it is easy to fill ourselves up with lots of junk. I am learning to plan meals ahead of time and keep healthy snacks around at all times. It’s amazing the difference I feel when I eat well.
As we enter this busy holiday season and transition into a new year I️ hope that you will join me in creating your own self care practices, becoming more mindful and definitely slow down.
Cheers to the holiday season and running on a full charge!