Friday, September 11, 2015

Do You Ever Just Have "One of Those Days?"

Hello friends!

How is your SELF-Tember going so far?  Are you mindfully taking better care of yourself?  (I love that picture above, just looking at it makes me take a deep breath and feel more relaxed!) As today is September 11, 14 years after that horrible day which we will never forget, let's honor those who lost so much by caring more for ourselves and each other. 

In case you haven't read them, here are some of my previous posts about Self Care:
Some days we have a hard time dealing with things.  Whether a bad or "off" mood is triggered by an event that happened (hard day at work, lack of sleep, or spilled coffee on a new shirt), or something else (full moon, hormones out of whack, etc), we all have "just one of those days" sometimes.  While we talked about Mindset being self care, some days it just doesn't come as easily as others.

On those days, it's super important to go easy on yourself!  You're busy, you have a lot going on, and sometimes just the basics are all you can deal with.  That's the world we live in.  Being gentle with yourself, loving YOU even on a bad day, is sometimes the hardest thing to do, but also the most important.

On those days you're struggling, or if you just need a boost to get back to a more positive mindset, what are some of those basics you can focus on?

Just breathe:  This is really my favorite.  You don't need anything at all or to be anywhere in particular to take a minute and focus on your breathing.  If you're stressed, or sad, or frustrated, take one minute to take a deep breath in, hold it in for a few counts, then breathe out slowly.  Trust me!  It really does help. Pay attention to how you feel afterward, and repeat as many times or as often as needed.

Eat for your body, not your mind: It's so easy to go to the candy jar or reach for that ice cream or bag of chips when you're struggling.  Self care is really about taking the best care of you, so maybe in that moment of weakness, make a different choice by honoring your body.  Choose something that will make your body feel good, and not the thing you think will make your head feel better.  Drink a cup of tea or glass of water, make a green smoothie with frozen banana and spinach (tastes good and will energize you!), or be prepared for such a moment by having some healthy snacks but satisfying around (nuts are a great option!). 

Move, even just a little: Regular and consistent exercise is the ideal, but it's not always possible with busy schedules. Don't let that be an excuse though - every little bit helps! Go for a quick walk around the block (take the kids or a friend - it'll be good for them too!), do some easy stretches for 5 minutes when you wake up, do sit-ups or push-ups while you're watching TV.  All those little bits add up and can really make a difference.

Let your body and mind rest:  We know that sleep is important, right?  It impacts our ability to deal with stress, our willpower or ability to make healthy eating choices, even our hormones.  Unfortunately, it's also usually one of the first things to go with busy schedules or when we have a lot on our minds.  A few ideas that might help you sleep better are: having a consistent bedtime routine, getting in bed at the same time each night, writing down your to-dos for the next day or doing a brain dump of all the things you're worried about.  Here are some more tips from the National Sleep Foundation.

Most important of all, don't feel guilty about taking care of yourself.  Guilt is worthless, it serves no purpose. Life is too short!! You take care of yourself because you're important enough to take care of, and if you don't make yourself a priority, no one else will. You are worth it!! 

What are you doing to celebrate SELF-Tember and do something nice for you?  If you don't think you can find the time, schedule something small in your calendar, it'll be worth it!  Please share with me in the comments!

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