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:
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?
The reason you're not losing that belly fat...
The reason you're not happy and can't sleep..
The reason you're constipated, lack energy, and are sick often…
The reason you just can’t seem to reach your health and wellness goals may all be linked to….
S T R E S S .
Now, of course, there could be some other factors at play, but if you can manage your stress levels better then you will have more energy to focus on other areas of your health and wellness.
In order to stress less, I recommend that my clients start creating daily habits in their life to set them up for success.
So, today I’m sharing 10 steps that you can take daily to reduce stress in your life:
Start Your Day Off Right
As a mom, it’s so easy to let the day get the best of you. You wake up with kids screaming and begging for your attention. You’re tired and immediately thinking of your never ending to do list. You scroll through instagram and wish you had that glamorous life that blogger has. You rush around to get everyone ready for school and you’re stressed and exhausted and it’s only 8:00. I get it! This is why I recommend trying to wake up a little before your kids, have a large glass of water with lemon and do something that brings you joy. This could literally be anything from watching a funny youtube video, reading 10 pages from a book, listening to a podcast, or doing a little morning yoga. It doesn’t have to be long, but when you start the day off feeling good and like you’ve taken care of yourself then you will have so much more energy to take care of everyone else.
It only takes 3 minutes (or more if you choose). Sit quietly, listen to music or a guided meditation and relax your mind. This could be a part of your morning or nighttime routine. It doesn’t matter when you do it as long as you do it consistently.
Rhythms or routines are the secret to more freedom in your life. I used to feel like they would restrict me or feel suffocating and I fought it for a long time. I’ve learned that having rhythms or routines really sets a foundation for more peace and calm in your home. A few of my favorite rhythms are having a morning and night time routine, a morning and afternoon checklist for the kids so they know exactly what they need to get done without me having to nag or question them, and batch cooking once a week so we always have healthy food options available. What rhythms could you create for you and your family?
Be thankful. Think of 5 things you are grateful for. Journal it or write a thank you card to someone. It's amazing how much this simple act can change your mood and reduce your stress levels. I love to do this in the morning and right before bed.
Focus on Your Big 3
Pick only 3 tasks that will be your priority for the day and focus on getting those done. So often we try to tackle a list of 20 things and then we feel defeated at the end of the day when we’ve only accomplished a few items. By setting only 3 main tasks, it is more likely that you will actually be able to get them done and then you will feel satisfied and accomplished at the end of the day. Of course, if you easily accomplish your 3 items then you can move on to more tasks and those will be an added bonus!
Move Your Body
You don't need an intense exercise regimen to release endorphins and increase your energy and happiness, you just simply need to move your body in a way that you enjoy. Dance in the kitchen, walk your dog, or ride a bike.
A simple walk in the park or having lunch outside on the picnic table can really help to bring your stress levels down. Find a way to get outside a few times everyday, even if it’s only for a few minutes.
When you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed or anxious, simply focus on slowing down your breath and change your breathing by taking deep, long breaths. This can truly help you relax.
It’s so important to sit down without distractions and eat mindfully. Ask yourself “Am I hungry?” before eating. Tune into your bodies fullness cues. Take your time eating and chew your food thoroughly. This is a great way to just take a break from the day and nourish your body with healthy, delicious food. If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of mindful eat, click here to take my free course!
I’m sure you’ve heard it a million times, but sleep really is SO important for your overall health and wellness. It can also be extremely difficult when you have little ones crying or crawling into your bed at night. If you are currently at phase of #momlife where most of your sleep is interrupted, then I recommend napping when you can or trying to go to bed a little earlier to make up for it. Try to get 7-9 hours of sleep as often as possible, but also don’t stress if this current phase of life doesn’t allow for it. Remember, it is temporary and you will sleep again!
As always, don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to implement all of the tips right away. Choose one to focus on until it becomes a daily habit that you don’t have to think about it.