You've got a hectic schedule and most days the thought of prioritising time for yourself can feel impossible. You promise yourself that you’ll slow down on the weekend, catch up on some sleep and fit in that yoga class. But, do you?
I’m guessing not always. But, what can you do to avoid running yourself so far into the ground that your wellbeing begins to suffer and you become vulnerable to illness?
Well, I’m happy to say that being a full time business owner for well over a decade has taught me a thing or two about creating calm and mindful moments - even on those days where it feels impossible. So, I'm sharing a few tips that will help you to easily fit self care into your day while boosting your productivity and focus.
SNACK OFTEN - That’s right, try and snack more often but always keep it healthy. Not only does this help to keep your energy levels consistent but it stops us from reaching that point where hunger takes over and unhealthy food choices seem like a really good idea! Reach for fruit as much as you can; it’s easy to carry with you and can even be eaten on the move if you really have to. Bananas are a favourite of mine, they’re sweet and curb any sugar cravings but more importantly they’re high in potassium and help to keep your mind and body in great shape. But, there’s lots to choose from; apples, oranges, pears, blueberries - the list goes on. Pick the ones that you enjoy the most and you’ll be much more likely to eat them.
SLEEP WELL - I’m a real advocate for great sleep but if an early night just isn’t possible then let’s try and make sure that the hours that you do get are at least restorative. And, it’s really not difficult to improve the quality of your sleep. Reduce your intake of caffeine and alcohol at least a couple of hours before bed (remove them altogether if you can), avoid screens for a while too because the blue light messes with your circadian rhythms which means that when you do fall asleep it takes much longer for you to reach the restorative deep sleep that your body needs. And, treat your bedroom like the sanctuary that it is; clear clutter, enjoy clean sheets and remove the tech. Here are a few more tips for getting a great night’s sleep.
PAUSE - With a busy schedule this idea can sometimes meet a little resistance but bear with me. We can all find a minutes here and there - even if it has to be a bathroom break! Use this time to check in, see if you’re holding tension anywhere in your body - drop your shoulders, release your stomach muscles and take a few deep breaths. These actions help you release the ‘fight or flight’ mode that you’ve possibly spent the last few hours in. They tell your body and mind that it’s safe to relax. It also helps you to start afresh and stops you from carrying stress and tension from one part of your day to another.
START WELL - There are parts of our day that we can’t always control, but, how you start your day is often something that you can. And, a positive start can make all the difference to how the following 16 hours go. So, how do your mornings look right now? If they’re not quite the calm and uplifting start that you need then consider making a few simple changes. I like to spend a little time in meditation so that i’m clear on my intentions for the day ahead (even a couple of minutes can help). But, there are so many other things to try too; enjoy a nourishing breakfast, stretch your body, avoid reaching for your phone as soon as you open your eyes and most importantly smile because you’re here to enjoy another day.
DRINK MORE - I can’t say enough about how drinking more water impacts your day. Not only are you keeping your body hydrated so that it can carry out basic functions with ease but you’re boosting your mind, tackling fatigue and hopefully avoiding some of the caffeine too. So swap your refillable coffee cup for a large refillable water bottle and start today - yes it’ll have you visiting the bathroom a little more for the first week or so but your body will get used to it. You can even use those extra trips to create those moments of pause we talked about earlier.
I’ve purposefully shared small acts of self care that fit easily into your day, have a positive impact on your body and also keep your mind fresh and focused. Yes, they’re simple but that’s often all we need to stay replenished and feel more nurtured throughout our days. Try using one of them this week and see how it makes you feel.
AUTHOR: LEANNA DOOLIN
Co – Founder of holistic skincare brand, Pure Thoughts and advocate for women finding pause in their day to breathe deeply, give thanks and reconnect to what matters. Loves early mornings, dogs and books that you can’t put down.