IMPORTANT SELF-CARE STEPS FOR 2020 SERIES PART 2

IMPORTANT SELF-CARE STEPS FOR 2020 SERIES PART 2

“Change is the only constant in life.” Heraclitus, Greek philosopher.

Maybe you are struggling with being a newly single mom or maybe you are up all night worrying about how you are going to survive financially.   There are very few guarantees in life, but one guarantee for sure is that nothing remains the same.  I remind myself of this regularly.   This too shall pass.  You got this!

Trust me mommies, I get it.   Sometimes I thought I was going to die from all of the pressure and stress, and one day, it all came to a breaking point.  I went to the doctor and the doctor drew a diagram of a scale on the white tissue paper on the examining table and told me, “You have too many responsibilities!  Everything in your life is a duty with expectation.  The only way to get a handle on this is to tip the scale back the other way.”

Part of self-care is managing your work-life balance.

I was constantly being expected to perform.   So as a result, I was finding little joy in my daily life because I wasn’t being energized.   I can’t say this word enough, self-care, self-care, self-care.   lol

In my last post, I talked about how to get started in self-care.  Self-care can be linked to many benefits like high performance, better decision-making, increased energy and enhanced mood.   You will never completely rid your life of stress from your career or your job of motherhood.  (And why would you?  Motherhood is the most rewarding job ever.) But finding ways to carve out time for ‘me time’ or self-care will help you cope with the pressure. 

In this post I am going to talk about three things that you can start doing regularly in your life that helped me.

DEEP BREATHING EXERCISES

This may seem simple, but it really works.  Most of us breathe through our chest and not our belly, which is not the correct way to breathe.   We also take small quick breaths in response to stress or when we sense a threat, but the better way to respond to stress is to practice belly breathing.   You can do it anywhere and anytime.  Just don’t be surprised if people look at you strangely.đŸ¤£   

Here is how it works: 

[su_box title=”Belly Breathing” radius=”15″]1. Sit in an upright position.  2. Take a deep breath in through your nose and place your hand on your belly so you can feel your belly pushing out with the deep breath.  3. Release your breath by breathing out slowly with pursed lips ( Count to 7).  You should be able to feel your belly sink in with your hand and your shoulders should be completely collapsed and relaxed.  4. Do this as many times as needed until you no longer feel distressed.    (About 3 to 7 times.)    [/su_box]

WORK-LIFE BALANCE

Of course, the first thing you may be told to do is take medication.  Well, I wanted to try and change my circumstances organically.   Not that I have anything against medication, but for myself this was the path I chose.  You should always evaluate your PERSONAL situation and follow your doctor’s instructions.   But my doctor gave me another type of prescription.   My doctor told me to go and do something fun at least two days a week.  Say what??   

She said it could be anything from taking a pottery class to having lunch with friends as long as it wasn’t something I was expected to do good at or that I couldn’t fail at.   

She said, and I quote, “Move the coffee table out of the middle of your living room and just dance.”   And that’s exactly what I did.   

I now try and schedule lunch weekly with a family member, friends or a colleague.   I started writing.   I dance regularly in the middle of my living room.   And I make it a priority to exercise weekly, no exceptions.

YOGA

Yoga is similar to the deep breathing technique I mentioned earlier, but yoga incorporates more than just breathing.  It is an ancient method that connects your mind and body.  It consists of breathing exercises, meditation and poses that encourage relaxation.   Studies have shown that yoga decreases stress, which as a result decreases the primary stress hormone cortisol.   This is the hormone that contributes to fat around the abdomen area.   So if you struggle with losing fat in your tummy area, you might consider yoga in addition to your other workout regimen.

Not all benefits are proven with scientific studies, but some other claimed benefits are it may fight depression, it may improve high blood pressure, and it may help with chronic pain.  So it’s worth a try to see what works for you.

If attending a class at the gym sounds intimidating, try doing it at home.   There are many DVDs out there.   Some good apps are Daily Yoga, Yoga Studio and for a small price Pocket Yoga.     

 

What are some techniques you use to manage your stress?   Comment below.

 

Health and happiness. . .

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