high stress levels
so i could
and to support
just i face
just you face
we all face
in human history
to be a parent
as seasons change
we're all going
to be working with
no quick fix
to end it
once and for all
because we're human
to support yourself
the inside out
so you experience
but it doesn't
take you out
so you have
a beautiful life
My Top 10 Stress Busters
#1 Listen to Brazilian Radio on Pandora.
Almost everyday after 5 pm, I feel stressed and exhausted. I'm a morning person - and due to my childhood -parenting is challenging in the evenings. My cure? Bossa nova to everything. Bossa nova to making dinner, dishes and bedtime. Bossa nova to keep me calm. Give it a try here.
#2 Smell Some Citrus or Rose.
There's just something energizing about citrus. Something joyful, and that lets me know everything is ok with the world. When I need to feel peace and tune into my feminine energy, rose is my go to. You can make a spritzer, roll-on or just keep an essential oil bottle on a shelf to whiff throughout the day.
#3 Slow Down. Lay and Look.
I have this beautiful tree out my bedroom window. And I love my bedspread. Sometimes I just take a moment to fully relax and slow way down, and to lay and look at that tree. In my Calm the Storm program, we talk about how important it is to attune ourselves and slow down when we're overwhelmed. I love giving myself this stress reducing gift of honoring my need to slow down. (The trick is to not stay there for ever. To set a timer, and then get back up and engage with the world again, even if it's at a reduced pace.)
I've kept a journal since I was in 3rd grade (with a 7 year break when my son was little) and now I'm back to it. I like to journal out old negative stories to transform limiting thoughts and anxiety. Here's how I do it: I pick the topic I'm anxious or stressed about. I write down the main negative thoughts or fears about the topic. Most of them are untrue, but I write them down anyway. Then, I take each negative thought or false statement and turn into a positive, true statement. This helps me not only focus on the positive, but get to the heart of what the real issue and the lesson I'm working on learning.
#5 Find some nature.
Preventative hikes and walks in nature work best. But if I'm feeling down and out, getting out into nature always helps. The further away from civilization and the longer the hikes = the biggest reset. But even a walk in a nature park provides nourishment like nothing else.
#6 Move and meditate.
Every morning. 10-20 minutes each. And if I don't, I'm sorry by 12 noon. Movement and meditation is my super power to transform my childhood trauma and the modern day stress of single motherhood. It can be your super power too for whatever stress you face. Even just 10 minutes a day. Or start with 5 minutes.
#7 Call a loved one.
One of the greatest blessings in my life: amazing, amazing friends. While I'm more introverted these days than ever, I want you to know that hands down: my friends have gotten me to where I am today. The cool thing about my closest friends? You can work with them! Schedule a session today with one my amazing friends, like sister Abigail, Lotus, Kelly, Alisha or Jenny. Who are your go to people who've got your back no matter what? Give them a call when you need them! Community is everything.
#8 Play a Board Game or Have a Pillow Fight.
It's so hard to keep it together as a parent when we're stressed. Having "go to" Connection Activities that you can offer in moments of high stress to fill up your children's emotional buckets is everything. When I'm stressed, I can offer to play a board game (a simple, not complex one) or to have a pillow fight. What about you? What connecting activity can you still do with yours kids when you're stressed?
#9 Talk positively to yourself.
When we're stressed, we tend to get negative and then we tend to internalize that negativity, which makes us more stressed. Mastering the art of positive self talk can save the day. "It's all ok." "You're doing the best you can." "Tomorrow's a new day." "We've been through hard things before. We can do this." "No one is perfect." "It's all ok." (This is my favorite.) What piece of positive self talk do you want to say to replace self-criticism of self-judgement?
#10 Deep belly breathe as a way of life.
On the inhale, fill your belly up with air. One the exhale, push the air out. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Don't save deep belly breathing for a yoga class. Do it as a way of life. You'll release calming hormones and get the oxygen to the higher centers of your brain. Deep belly breathing is like a relaxing drug that is 100% free with no negative side effects. Deep belly breathe away!
You Got This Stress Busters.
Here's to less stress, and more freedom in the moment for all of us.
Hi friends, I write from the heart to tell my life story, and the story of those in my neighborhood called life. Research shows that our children's emotional & mental health is contingent upon us parents being able to tell our life story, or "coherent narrative." This is my coherent narrative, my life story in the making, with some of what I love in life too. My goal is to share my life in a way that is real, uplifting & positive- sometimes serious, sometimes fun. In my practice, I inspire parents to empowerment through reclaiming our life stories and learning respectful discipline. My work is my offering to our children- our future. Wishing you all a happy family!