It isn’t surprising that you are feeling overwhelmed, wound up and utterly stressed out these days - it’s a busy time of year in the craziest way! I know it feels like all times of the year are the busiest? The holiday season however always has that extra fa la la la….. I doubt feeling this way is helping you accomplish those millions of extra tasks these days. You see when we’re bouncing all over the place; whether it’s actually happening or just happening amongst our thoughts and to-do lists, so is the energy we put into these tasks. If the scattered chaotic energy is what we put into what we do, what do you think the result will be?
….right…..exactly…….It’s nothing revolutionary, just a simple idea. Why don’t you stop and take care of yourself for a little while. I promise you all those things you must get done will still be there when you come back and they will be far less daunting. What an idea! I know! You may have heard this idea a hundred times before, and how are your results? Don’t doubt your efforts. The fact that you have the awareness is the first great gift you could offer yourself. If this is the very first time you have pondered such madness as putting everyone and everything in your life on hold and be right back, well I wish you could see the smile I have for you right now.
I would bet a day with the sand between my toes that throughout your days you have experienced a time or maybe 2..3…4….where you are holding your breath and are completely unaware that you are. Of course after some time our autonomic nervous system kicks in and we are all systems a go again. The power your breath has to calm, relax and re-energize you is gravely underestimated. We tend to hold our breath when we are worried, anxious, stressed, overwhelmed, scared or angry. Here’s my wee anatomy lesson…..your bloods wants to be neutral, that is how we achieve the healthiest happiest state for our entire body to function properly and to reduce stress levels. If you breathe out too much carbon dioxide it changes your blood’s chemical make-up, it becomes more alkaline which in turn fires up your sympathetic nervous system so we naturally continue to over breathe…..have you ever caught yourself paused in a moment and then all of a sudden you take a big almost staggered breath in……that’s called respiratory alkalosis because your body is trying to bring up the acidity in your blood and that means your body’s chemical state is not happy with us, our hormones get all out of whack and we all know how hormone imbalances can make us feel. The only way to come back is you must decide to change your breath. Taking long slow breaths in through the nose and out through the nose actually creates nitrous oxide within the tissues inside your nose, how cool is that?! If you’re in need of an energy boost, add some extremity movement to your breath. As you inhale raise your whole arm up and away from your body reaching your fingers for the sky. As you exhale reverse this action. Try this right now, and mentally record how you feel. This will become natural after a short time, just keep the focus.
my friend, I can tell you right now, you’ve got this! Truly not feeling it? let’s try couple things. First let’s think back to those times when all the stars for your day just aligned perfectly. You got up right when your alarm went, powered through your morning routine, packed the healthiest lunches for you and the kids and even got out the door on time without struggle, and on went your day just this way. I know you have had those days. So if you’ve done that before why do you feel like you’re not doing it these days? Because you just forgot how absolutely wonderful you are. Do you think you need to move mountains to feel like you can handle all that comes at you each day? No even close! you simple need to notice and acknowledge as many of those small things you rock all the time. The key is to start where you are and start small. It’s good to have goals and big dreams, but little by little a little becomes a lot, right! By noticing and acknowledging that you can make a yummy meal for your family is a triumph! It doesn’t have to be all around perfect; as in the yummiest, the healthiest, the most thoughtful conversation enticing….it simply needs to be one good thing for you, just think about how it feels when someone says to you, “Yum! This supper is great”. How about YOU be the one to say that to yourself in celebration of each and every one of your daily triumphs. That is called noticing and acknowledging yourself for the good you do. Don’t wait for others to offer you such sweet words, offer them to yourself all day long. Believe me, it is lifechanging. Now for the second thought….how passionately do you encourage your child or a dear friend or your partner when they are in need of a bit of a endorphin boost. Passionately and wholeheartedly encourage yourself my dear. Turbo-charge these effects by looking at yourself in the mirror and saying the words you long to hear out loud. When we fell good about the good that we do we are far less likely to let the times that aren’t so good or feel overwhelming get us down.
did you even know there is a difference? So what is the difference? We all require long periods of sleep for the purpose of restoration, growth and repair of our tissues. It is also a time for healthy synthesis of hormones and proteins as well as cognitive function. So sleeping is non0negotiable, but who doesn’t crave those delicious peaceful times of rest throughout the day. Proper rest is where the magic happens. It is short periods of checking out of your busy world and checking into yourself. Yoga Nidra and meditation are your key! Rest, yoga Nidra, and meditation help relieve muscular, mental and emotional tension. It releases stress and anxiety from your mind and your tissues. Proper rest heals endocrine (hormonal) imbalances, clears the subconscious and increase energy levels……not to mention it induces better long periods of sleep. Rest is the crown jewel you can offer yourself and your family. The trickle down benefits are ever lasting.
Christina Skiftun is a mommy to 3 + 1 on the way, an entrepreneur, owner of The Yoga Studio North Calgary and a living life to the fullest junkie. She is inspired by many who walk along side her and many she continues to dream who will.