It’s always the worst in my kitchen. I’m standing there and my kids are harassing one another while simultaneously asking me for a snack, the cat is crying for food, the microwave is beeping and the phone will be ringing. And I’m going insane. I constantly tell my husband that I’m overstimulated.
We’re at a stage where there is no free time and life is really busy. I get it. My kids have a ton of after school activities and from the time they get off the bus to bedtime, it’s a flurry of homework & sports while trying to get some sort of dinner/food thing going. I can’t even remember the last time we all ate as a family at the table because someone is always rushing off to something.
My stress level is high but I’m trying to find a way to embrace the crazy and find ways to de-stress during small moments in 2015. I regularly go to acupuncture, which helps but isn’t enough. My acupuncturist always says I should find the time for me and to relax but it’s hard. But I’m trying.
So this past weekend I did a quick 20 minute yoga video at home. I skipped my usual gym routine and did an On Demand video about Yoga for Runners. I focused on breathing and stretching and I’m not kidding when I say it helped me a little. Just to grab that twenty minutes to myself, to take a break, really gave me a chance to pause and feel a little more grounded. I’ve added trying to do more yoga & stretching to my list of ways to destress this year. It now looks something like this:
1. Yoga/stretching/breathing. I’m going to try and do more quick breaks like the one I took this weekend. Even if it doesn’t involve a yoga video, just calming my breathing and stretching helps me feel more grounded.
2. Meditation. I actually often use and love meditation apps on my phone like the Calm.com one and Take A Break – Guided Meditations. Most of the time I fall asleep listening to them and can’t get through it all but it’s most definitely relaxing.
3. Staying focused. So much of the time I’m all ADD with what I’m doing around the house. I’ll be emptying the dishwasher and I see that the counter needs wiping so I abandon emptying the dishwasher to wipe the counter. Then the phone will ring. And before I know it, I’m 3 tasks away from my original task. This year, I’m learning that if I stay focused with the task on hand, things actually get DONE and that helps keep stress down. I’ve tried to turn it into a little game of ignoring the distractions and seeing how well I can do that.
4. Exercise. I’m a huge proponent of exercise and think my stress levels would be through the roof if I didn’t get to the gym as often as I do. But even if you can’t get to the gym, just a quick walk can help put things in perspective and get things flowing.
5. Enjoy the little moments. Rather than rushing around and letting life whiz by, I’ve been trying this year to slow down and enjoy the smaller moments with my kids. Not only is it memorable to take that time with my kids but I find that stopping what I’m doing to take the time to enjoy what’s going on helps to destress me.