10 Daily Steps to Less Stress for Busy Moms

10 Daily Steps to Less Stress for Busy Moms

As an entrepreneur with a side job, 2 kids, a dog, and a household to care for life can be overwhelming and stressful.

I used to have the belief that when I was stressed it was a good sign because it meant that I was busy and I would performed better with the added pressure. I also didn't believe there was a whole lot you could do about it. 

After many years of stress and struggle and a whole lot of research, I finally learned the importance of managing stress and I've created healthy habits that help me stay calm.

The truth is while some stress can be beneficial, stress can also be extremely detrimental to your health.

Did you know that studies have linked stress to:

  • increased appetite

  • higher risk of heart disease and related death

  • pre-existing conditions get worse

  • higher chance of picking up unhealthy habits (such as smoking, drinking, binge eating, ect.)

  • higher chance of fat around the abdomen

  • weakened immune system

  • and some studies even show a link between stress and cancer

Pretty crazy, right?

How to Create The Ultimate Nighttime Routine

I’ve always considered myself to be a night owl.

I’ve also always struggled with shutting off my mind so that I could fall asleep. The second my head would hit the pillow, my mind would race. I would start to think of all the things to do or all the things that scared me or even excited me. It’s like my mind instantly would rev up and go crazy.

I used to use alcohol, tylenol pm, comfort food, or binge watching tv until I was so tired that I’d finally just fall asleep. This would just make me feel horrible in the morning and then I’d be exhausted and droggy throughout the whole next day.

When I started to eat healthier and learn more about wellness I realized how important sleep was and I knew I had to start making sleep a priority. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always loved sleeping, but I wanted to find away to better fall asleep and sleep peacefully through the night. Over the years I’ve really learned that I need a good 8-9 hours to feel my best and have productive day. Before, I didn’t realize that I actually had the ability to fall asleep easier and get a better night of sleep by just creating a relaxing nighttime routine.

 

Here Are 3 Tips for Creating Your Ultimate Nighttime Routine:

1. Start Winding Down 1 Hour Before You’d Like To Fall Asleep  

This means turning off all electronics and television in order to let your mind begin to rest. Research has shown that the blue lights coming from these devices suppress the production of melatonin which can delay sleep and lead to less REM sleep. This can cause you to wake up still feeling tired even after 8 hours of sleep.

2. Do Something Nourishing For Your Mind, Body, & Soul

During this hour without electronics find rituals or routines that really make you feel good. Some amazing suggestions I love are:

  • Meditating
  • reading an actual book (something light, fun, or inspiring)

  • Journaling

  • Face mask

  • Light candles

  • Take a bath or shower

  • Diffuse calming essential oils

  • Mix with coconut or sesame oil with essential oils to massage all over your body

Find an activity that makes you feel relaxed and pampered right before bed and it will help you sleep like a baby.

3. Brain Dump & Gratitude

This step has been critical for me and has allowed me to fall asleep so much faster. First, I like to brain dump any to do’s for the next day or anything I am worried about. This allows me to not stress over it because I know it is written down and I can address it in the morning. After, I write a list of things I appreciate or am grateful for that day. I write as many things I can think of and usually feel at peace and happy right before bed.

 

Well, those are my simple yet VERY effective tips for creating the perfect nighttime routine to help you sleep peacefully.


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Tell Me - What do you do as part of your nighttime routine or what are you planning to change? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

How to Stay Sane When Life Gets Hectic (+20 ways to practice self-care in 5 minutes or less)

"I’m just too busy."

"I have to work, clean, cook, pay the bills, etc."

"My partner, kids, pets always come first."

"Everything will fall apart of I don't do it all."

There’s a million excuses as to why we don’t take care of ourselves. And sometimes, there are very valid reasons or intense pressures which can make self-care or investing in yourself so hard.

It’s even more important to practice self-care when pressures are high. If you have a lot on your plate, you’re stressed to the max, and you are just zooming through each day on autopilot  eventually you’re body is going to crash.

You may get sick, start having digestive issues, headaches, fatigue, and the list could go on. Our bodies are not meant to be stressed out all the time and it will start to affect your body.

Now, it may seem like everyone on the internet is preaching about self-care and you just don’t have time to take an hour long bath or sit and read a novel - and trust me I get it!

The truth is all you need is 5 minutes a day to really nourish yourself in a way that brings you peace and joy and that simple act can make ALL the difference.

Are you Addicted to Being Busy and Overwhelmed?

I have a confession: I used to be extremely addicted to being busy and feeling overwhelmed. 

Now, I understand addiction is very serious and trust me, I don’t take this lightly.

For as long as I can remember, I have self-identified as being busy and overwhelmed. It wasn’t until recently that I started to become aware of the problem and realized that this had been going on for most of my life.

In today's society it is so common for people to almost brag about being busy. It’s often seen as a status symbol and as if we are more “worthy” because we are busy.

Have you ever asked someone how they’ve been and their almost automatic response is “extremely busy”?

I’m not going to lie, but this has been my response to this question for a while, especially since having children. And was I actually busy? Yes, I believe I was, but was it really necessary to be as busy as I was or felt? And did I need to emphasize that I was busy or could I just have answered the question with “Great. I’ve been doing a lot of awesome things”. I definitely think I could have had a better response and I believe it’s really all a matter of perspective.

But back to when I realized this was a huge issue for me.

I was working full-time, taking care of my 2 kids and a household of responsibilities (while my fiancé worked 70+ hours a week), taking college courses, and trying to obtain my health coaching certificate all while trying to start my health coaching business and running an Etsy shop on the side.

Just writing that out is pretty exhausting for me now.

During this time in my life (not too long ago), I began to get very nauseous, dizzy and my anxiety was extremely heightened. If one thing went wrong or I felt slightly criticized, I would quite literally lose my shit.

There were nights of binge-eating or drinking a little too much in order to just NOT think about everything for a second. After 2 weeks straight of feeling nauseous and dizzy I decided to pay a visit to my doctor.

The doctor visit went well. I wasn’t pregnant, suffering from vertigo, or any other serious illness or disease (all thoughts running through my head). My doctor simply said, “We may need to increase the dosage of my anxiety of medication”. I was shocked and horrified. Although I was prescribed medication, I was rarely taking it and definitely didn't want a higher dosage. 

I was studying health and holistic integrative nutrition and yet, I realized I was extremely unhealthy. I didn’t necessarily agree with the fact that I needed more medication. I just realized that I needed to prioritize myself and my health or else who knows what would happen.

Back then, I didn’t recognize my addiction to being busy or overwhelmed. I just thought I was doing what had to be done to get to where I needed to be. I also don’t regret trying to “do it all”, but I’ve come to realize that being busy and constantly overwhelmed is no way to live. Believe it or not, we actually do have a choice on whether we want to live this way or not.

When looking back on the last 10 years of my life, I’ve realized that I was always taking on more than I could handle and performing at a mediocre level in all areas of my life. Since I was SO busy, I made the excuse for myself that B’s in my classes were okay and my “meets expectations” on reviews at work were fine since I was just too busy to give my all anyway.

What I've recently discovered is that I have been avoiding and resisting myself and my life all along.

If I had more time to spare then I would have more time to think, more time to give, and more effort to put in. If I had more time to think, then I would have realized I was completely insecure, had a lot of unresolved emotional issues, and was extremely afraid of failure. If I had more time to give, then people would expect more of me, but what if I wasn’t able to meet their expectations? If I put more effort in and failed, then what excuse would I have?

I’ve spent the last year or so on a journey of self discovery. I’ve spent a lot of time meditating, reading and learning. I’ve realized that I no longer want to live in this fog of busyness and overwhelm. I would much rather feel my feelings and truly experience my life.

I haven’t figured out all of the answers. Sometimes I still take on too much. I even respond with “I’m so busy” from time to time. But each day, I am more aware and working towards a life of peace, presence, and fulfillment. And I truly believe it’s possible.

So, although I may not have a lot to offer you if you are struggling now too, I just to know you are not alone and there is another way.

I believe the first step in the journey is awareness and prioritizing self-care. And by being aware and prioritizing our self-care we can slowly start to change the way we live one day at a time.

SO TELL ME - do you struggle with being addicted to being busy & overwhelmed?

What to Do When You're Stressed to The Max

I don't know about you, but lately, I've been stressed to the max.

Between taking classes, kids after school activities, birthday parties, client calls, cleaning my house and running a business, sometimes I just need to breathe and recalibrate.

So even if you're stressed to the max right now, there are still small, practical steps you can take to cope with that stress and stay healthy.

So, why am I talking about stress?

Like it’s not enough to live with stress, now I’ve got to be talking about it too?! Agh.... not fun...!!!

But the truth is that it sure is important to acknowledge stress so you can reduce it or cope with it a little better.

Think of it like aiming for a 1% improvement....you may not be able to change the stressors in your life, but if you can manage the impact on your body 1% better, then you’ll stay healthier and more able to handle the stress.

Worthwhile, yes?

5 Ways to Nourish Yourself Without Food

Lately, I've been focusing on ways to really nourish myself in all areas of my life. 

I thought it was a great time to share some out-of-the-box ways to think about nourishing your body, mind and spirit…

But wait, why am I even using the word “nourishment” if I’m not talking about food?

That’s a great question!

The reason I am using the word nourishment outside of its regular foodie context is because we often find ourselves so over-focused on food that we forget about all the other simple and wonderful ways to nourish ourselves.

What does it mean to nourish myself without food?

We forget that taking a walk in the woods with our dog is calming and rejuvenating.

That lying on your bed listening to your favorite song while feeling the breeze kissing your face is soothing and relaxing.

That feeling the grass tickle your feet as you watch the clouds drift by is as good as meditation!

We actually “eat” all day with our senses… we “consume” our environment through touch, feel, taste, sound and sight.

Why Giving Up on Weight Loss May Just Be the Secret to Getting What You Truly Want

give up on weight loss

Before you roll your eyes and think, “I can’t give up on weight loss. I don’t want to be fat forever” please hear me out.

So many of my clients come to me wanting desperately to lose weight and finally reach their “ideal” weight.

But when I dig a little deeper and ask the question “What do you really want?”. Some of the answers I receive are vitality, acceptance, happiness, confidence, a partner, friendships, dream job, and so on.

Most of us believe that once we lose the weight we will have whatever outcome it is we are desperately craving (the guy, the dream job, happiness, ect.).

But the truth is that weight loss does not guarantee anything.

Unfortunately, our society and the media puts this false sense of hope in us that makes us believe that once we lose weight we can have or do whatever we want.

But what if we lose the weight and we still do not feel confident, or still cannot find that partner or dream job?

You may not believe it right now, but this is often what happens when people lose weight.

They come to realize that it actually was never the weight that was the real issue.

Often times there are so many underlying issues that go unresolved when we just focus on weight loss as our goal.

I think it’s time we approach our health and life differently.

I think it’s time we start working on our mental, emotional and physical health from a place of love out of a desire to truly be healthy and happy.

Once we can let go of our unrealistic expectations of reaching this arbitrary “ideal” weight, then I believe we can finally break free from the mental and emotional stress that we are putting on ourselves by obsessing over weight loss.


But wait, How do you actually stop obsessing over weight loss?

 

Here’s my 5 tips to get started shifting your mindset around weight loss:

1. Get Informed & Practice Self-Acceptance. There are quite a few books, podcasts, and blogs that are actually about transforming your relationship with food and your body without focusing on weight loss as the primary goal. I think the best way to start practicing self-love and acceptance is to learn how others have done it and surround yourself with like-minded people. Here are a few of my favorites resources:

Books: Health at Every Size, Intuitive Eating, Body Respect

Blogs: Isabel Foxen Duke, Be Nourished, The Balanced Blonde

Podcasts: Food Psych, Psychology of Eating

2. Ditch the scale: I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, throw out your scale and stop letting the number on it define you.

3. Focus on Nourishment: Instead of your primary goal being weight loss, how about shifting your mindset and focusing on nourishment. When it’s time to eat ask yourself, “what will make me feel good and nourished?” Also, look at other areas of your life and ask yourself “What needs to be nourished?” Perhaps your relationships need extra attention or you need to tap into your creativity. This simple shift in thinking can really lead to living a more joy filled life.

4. Discover What You Really Want:  Now this one may be a challenge or you may be thinking “Duh! I know exactly what I want”. But, I want to ask you to pause for a moment and ask yourself “What do I think I will get once I lose weight.” As I mentioned earlier, there’s usually a much deeper reason we want to lose weight and it’s important to acknowledge what that is. If this doesn’t come easy to you and you’re just not sure what it is that you really want, I suggest to just start doing things that bring you joy and be curious and aware of what you desire in your life. You could set out to try new activities or travel and just be curious as to what you are lacking or craving in your life.

5. Go After What You Really Want: Now that you know what you want, it’s time to start going after that instead of waiting on the weight. If it’s a boyfriend you truly desire, you do not need to lose weight before you find him. Start dressing up and putting yourself out there just as you are. If you think once you lose the weight you will feel more confident, than instead why don’t  you try to start focusing on way to build up your self-confidence just as you are. A great start would be to read books or blogs and learn more about how you can develop self-confidence now.

 

The benefits of releasing the obsession with weight loss are endless. You may actually be happier, enjoy eating and exercising, feel more confident, have more energy, and finally embrace your true desires.
 

I really hope this blog has opened your eyes to new possibilities that you may not have even considered before. And if you’re still not loving the idea of giving up on weight loss, then I suggest making it a goal for it to not be your primary focus. It’s all about taking baby steps and learning how to shift our mindset around weight loss (which is no easy task!).

The truth is your weight does not define you and your weight will not give you what you truly want.   Only you can do that... and you already have everything you need right inside of you.

 



 

Now tell me below in the comments, how does it feel to think of letting go of the obsession with weight loss? 

How Prioritizing Your Self-Care Will Make You a Better Mama

How Prioritizing Your Self-Care Will Make You a Better Mama

As a mom, it can be a real struggle to do something for yourself.

We are usually running on very little sleep while trying to remember and do all the things to keep our little ones alive each day.

Due to personal insecurities, feelings of obligation and/or societal pressures, we can often feel guilty for wanting to do something for ourselves that doesn’t involve our children.

I spent years feeling guilty any time I had a babysitter or simply didn’t have a kid attached to hip. When I started to focus on my health and wellness, I began to realize that devoting my whole self to my kids was not only affecting my mental and physical health, but it really wasn’t benefiting anyone.

It’s important for our overall health to have some “me” time to nourish our mind, body, and soul. We are not mommy robots that can go on autopilot for all hours every single day. If we don’t start prioritizing our self-care we are likely going to reach a breaking point (aka serious mental breakdown).

You Are Worth It

You Are Worth It

You are worth it.

You deserve to live the life you’ve always imagined.

You are perfect in every way possible.

Your laugh, your smile, your thoughts, your actions are all perfectly you.

No one else on this planet is as uniquely you as you are right this moment.

Your body shape and size is right where it’s supposed to be.