Stop Stressing About Stressing!
No matter what your parenting style is, how old your bub is, or what your daily routine tends to look like, I think we can ALL agree that being a parent (a working one at that!), is STRESSFUL. Trying to navigate laundry, breakfast, morning drop off, the 9am meeting, who’s picking up the kids, dinner, and then trying to fit in some ‘me’ time is exhausting (I’m tired just writing that out). However, being stressed is detrimental to the fabric of your family/work life balance, and we know everyone wants to be the best version of themselves possible. So, the answer to stress? Self care! ‘What’s that?’ you may say – self care is taking actions to preserve or improve your health, (physical, mental and emotional that is). Again, we can hear you already – “I don’t have time for that”. Think again! We’ve come up with a few little practices you can easily integrate into your daily/weekly routines, to give you a little more pep in your step.
Having a journal is beneficial for loads of reasons – they keep your memories, track your feelings, and can help you sift through your emotions. Best of all, journaling can all be done on your own terms! This means, that you could write every day, once a week, or once a month, and you’ve still accomplished what self care is all about. Grab yourself a nice journal that sparks joy (yes, we’re pulling the Konmari out), a nice pen, and put it in your bedside table drawer. Whenever you find yourself overly stressed, upset, or overwhelmed, write it down! Getting it out of your head and onto the page can help you process how you’re feeling, and release some tension. The key to this one is to remember that it shouldn’t add more pressure to your day – if you’re exhausted before bed and don’t feel like writing everything down, then don’t. Just do what feels the best for you and your mind, and you’ll be well on your way to a clearer, happier mind.
When was the last time you got a massage? Last month? Last year? Maybe even BC? (That’s ‘before children’ if you’re wondering). It still surprises me just how much a little pamper session can perk me up, and there’s a million ways to custom tailor the pampering to your own time and needs. The simplest way is the classic at home pamper. This includes (but is not limited to) a hot shower, washing your hair, moisturising, all that jazz that just makes you feel 10 times better with minimum effort. If you’re feeling a little stuck for ideas, or you’re just thinking about checking out some new steps to add to your pamper routine – hit up Pinterest, you won’t be disappointed. If prepping the pamper seems to take all the stress relief out of it for you, take it to the shopping centre. Getting a manicure, a massage or a new hair style will definitely do the trick (and if you need someone to look after the kids – you know where we are!)
We can hear your groans through the screen, but finding a form of exercise that makes you feel good is the key to happiness and stress relief. It can be hard to find your thing, but there’s so many ways to do it! Yoga is great for the mind, body and soul – and there’s different levels so if you’re a beginner, no need to worry. We’re not going to give you a list of benefits that cardio has for your body, and mind, but if you think you’d enjoy walking, running or jogging – that’s perfect! Especially if you’re not keen on the whole gym setting. You can even take your bubs on the walk if you think they’ll make it that far. Taking care of your body, even in small ways like 10 minutes of exercise when you get the change, can make your mind so much lighter! It also gives you a great excuse to buy fancy new workout gear, and again, this is something you can fit into your routine sporadically, so no pressure.
It can be so easy to lose perspective when you’re constantly stressed out and overwhelmed, so a gratitude jar is perfect to remember the good things in your life (and we’re sure there’s lots of them when you think about it!). All you need for this one is a jar, and some spare paper. Each day, write down at least one thing that made you happy that day, or something that you’re thankful for. This could be as little as being thankful that the kids went to bed on time, or that your partner prepared dinner instead of you today. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, or down, go through some of the entries in the jar, and have a smile, and remember that it gets better, and that there’s loads of things to smile about – even if it doesn’t seem like it all the time. If a physical jar isn’t your style, just keep a note on your phone, and read through whenever you need a little pick-me-up! This is guaranteed to make you smile – the simplest form of stress relief.
It might sound obvious, but it’s so easy to get too busy to remember to have a drink! No need to worry about your 8 cups exactly to the millilitre, but keeping track of your water intake, and thinking mindfully about how much you’re drinking can do wonders for your health, sleep pattern and stress levels. There’s a bunch of apps to help you with this one too – Plant Nanny is great, it gives you a little reminder a few times a day to drink some water, and the more you drink, the more your virtual plant grows! It’s very cute, and it’s probably the easiest way to take care of your body and mind. It’s a great practice to implement into your routine, even showing your bubs the ropes for this one is a great idea. This tip is also great for skin – which is sure to make you feel better inside and out.
Self care is so important to your health – even though it can sometimes be difficult to fit it in. Sometimes, you have to prioritise yourself, (we know, it’s hard!), but that’s why we’re here. So, book yourself a Mynder, get the pep back in your step, and take care of yourself, so you can take care of everyone else! (Mainly those gorgeous kiddos).