If you intend to set goals for your self in the new year, you first need to get your self into a mindset for working on these goals. You cannot properly work on goals unless you are clear of mind. Get your self into a ‘good place’. Here are 4 easy steps!
Do something nice for yourself! Whether you are a stay at home parent or in the work force, you have a full time job. Which normally translates into little or no time for your self.
Step one is to MAKE time. Start with 10 minutes a day. Parents can use a relaxing bath to start with.
I know this is hard for a parent (for the first 10 years of raising my own kids, I could have sworn there was a button on the toilet seat because every time I sat down – someone yelled ‘mom!’)
Explain to your family that when the door is closed… that means quite time. (Unless there’s an emergency of course) Play quite music, light a candle and relax.
If this is too difficult to start with, try a ‘family quiet time’. This means for ten minutes, everyone stops and sits (or lays down) and listens to relaxing, soothing music. Eyes are closed and there’s no giggling. There’s no talking…just quiet. (With little ones this might take many tries, but keep at it!)
Of course you can always find time by waking up early before anyone else OR right before bedtime! And if your children have nap time you can take advantage of that too! Forget that load of laundry and take a few minutes for YOU!
If you are in the workforce, you might incorporate 10 minutes of quiet time during your lunch or a break. Walk outside. Try to find a place with a tree or some birds. Listen to sounds of nature and let them replace the stress in your mind. Appreciate the beauty of a tree or a flower. Soak it all in!
Once you’ve accomplished 10 minutes….. extend your ‘me’ time. If you can do 10 minutes, you surely can do 20! Or 30! You can do two or three short breaks a day or a 20-30 minute session all at once. Browse meditation tapes online and find one that fits your time allotment.
Once you get the feeling throughout your mind and body of being relaxed, it not only helps you to deal with the stress of the day, but it enables you to draw on that wonderful relaxed feeling when times get tough. I like to call this my ‘Happy Place’. I like to mentally go there in times of stress so that I can push aside the negative stress and breathe freely, relax and deal with the issue at hand. It’s as simple as recalling that wonderful feeling you experience while meditating. Plus it also helps you to be able to ‘take a mental timeout’ and think before you react.
Step two is to laugh. Giggle. Smile. Practice it several times a day. Laughing (like yawning) is contagious. How can one not smile during some one’s bout of laughter? Find something to laugh about. Laugh out loud. Belly laughs are great! See how much better you’ll feel just by taking 1 minute and just laughing!
Step three? Run and flail your arms! Yes, I’m serious. Did you ever see the episode of friends when Phoebe is running? Yes, like that. Be silly! Whether you run up and down your driveway in a silly fashion or clear a space in your living room to do this daily…. just do it. You’ll find that you’ll cause a lot of the laughter and smiles in Step 2! *If you cannot bring yourself to run silly then try dancing silly. Try it with your kids, they’ll love it too.
Step four is to hug someone. Share your wonderful energy with someone who needs it, wrap your arms around them and share a hug. Give a hug with no words attached and then ask that person to pass the hug on to someone they know that needs it. You’ll probably be very surprised how much this does for you, as well as the one you are hugging!
You’d be surprised how much these steps can help ease your stress and smooth out a bumpy day.