If there is one word that can accurately sum up how I am feeling right now, it would be, “EXHAUSTED!” According to the online dictionary, exhausted means drained of one’s physical or mental resources; very tired. VERY TIRED. Did I mention I am very tired? Yes, I am incredibly, totally, absolutely tired. A photograph of me after the end of a work-all-day and take-care-of-the-house-all-night can probably be found beside the word (And it isn’t an appealing look).
You would think that after 3o something years of living on this beautiful Earth that it would be easy to ease up on the things that weigh me down, but no. I must make a conscious effort in all that I do to prevent myself from pulling out all of my hair, or having an anxiety attack. Sure, I could go about life just rolling with the punches. Unfortunately, that is not the way I was wired. In a nutshell I am the three Os: an over thinker, an over analyzer, and an over worrier. Top that off with a sprinkle of overly sensitive and you have yourself a Renata 😉
About a year ago, in true journal loving fashion, I sat down and wrote a few things. In less than ten minutes I came up with a strategy to help myself out of a funk. And, let’s be real here, we ALL find ourselves in a funk every now and again. Am I right, or am I right? So, if you are a woman, a mother, basically, if you are human here are five things you can do to help maintain what is left of your sanity.
1.) SLEEP! SLEEP! SLEEP!
I know, I know, this is easier said than done. My son didn’t sleep through the night till way past his first birthday (I cringe thinking about those days). The week I returned to work from maternity leave I felt I wouldn’t make it a full month without collapsing. However, lack of sleep is the biggest mood destabilizer for me. In order for me to be a better human, I must sleep for a minimum of six hours, eight hours is ideal, nine hours would be perfection (But, I will take what I can get). So, that whole “wake up and get things done before your kids are up,” well, that doesn’t happen in this household. I don’t even feel guilty about it, you shouldn’t either.
2.) Hot Showers!
A hot & steamy shower is the cure for everything; I am certain of this. Sure, I could go spend a day (And some bucks) at a luxurious day at the spa. However, who here has time for that? Not this girl, my friends. What I do have time for is a long & hot shower after I put the little humans to bed. For me there is a meditative quality to a hot shower after a stressful day. I turn the hot water on (Close to skin-scalding) and jump right-on-in. I will close my eyes and let the hot water roll down my face. Inhale-Exhale. Inhale-Exhale. Most of the time, I will let the water fall on my body till I can no longer take the heat (This is usually because my entire body is beet red). A shower is an inexpensive option to wash away a difficult day. When I turn off the water I feel less agitated, less anxious, and ready for bed.
3.) Phone a Friend!
After becoming a mother, I realized how easily it is to become disconnected from the outside world. Your friend calls, you pick up the phone, the baby starts crying, your toddler wants another snack, you put the phone down and promise to call back as soon as you get the situation under control. Here’s the thing, it NEVER gets under control; does it? And, as a human being, you need human connection. The best boost to my morale is a good conversation with a good friend; throw in some coffee and my life has been made. Finding that one friend that you can vent to about ANYTHING and EVERYTHING is life changing. Even if you have to schedule it–write it in your planner, set an alarm, whatever you have to do to make it happen, do it. If you can actually go out for a cup of coffee, even better.
4.) Carve Out Alone Time!
Though this is quite frankly the most difficult for me to do as a full-time working mother of two, it is probably the most necessary. What I have learned as a work-outside-the-house momma, is that for me, the weekends are best spent with my family. So, as you can imagine, alone time is almost impossible to come by. My solution? Spend my lunch hours solo. On those days where my mind feels as though it might explode I order my favorite chicken pad thai & catch-up on Grey’s Anatomy. I don’t have to talk-to or interact-with a single person; it is glorious. It is a mini reboot in the middle of a crazy day.
5.) Throw Away the To-Do-List!
Is your to-do-list growing by the minute? SO IS MINE! Toss it. Crumple it up and throw it away. Is that too much for you? Okay, okay, just set it aside, at least for ONE day. Life with children can get busy, and crazy, and out of control. Every once in awhile, take that long list of things that “must-get-done” and forget about it. Get out of the house and enjoy yourself. Take a day to do something that is NOT on your list. Do you know what is even better? Throw away your to-do-list and sit at home and do absolutely nothing, except eat, because ya know, survival.
Taking care of yourself is just as important, if not more important than taking care of everything and every one around you. Think of your body as a cup. You cannot keep pouring without ever taking the time to refill. If all you do is pour and pour and pour, there will be a day that there will be nothing left to share. Take a moment and think about those things that bring you joy, now go out and do them.
Hey! Are you following me on Instagram? No? What?!? Go and follow me @JustAskRen you won’t regret it 😉