Ever feel off and you don't know why? You just push through your day anyway, ignoring how you feel, pushing it down. But then you find yourself taking out that stress on your kids and the ones you love the most. And years of stuffing down emotions can also lead to health problems and disease. Today we're going to talk about how to tune into those feelings and into your body so that you can give yourself what you need to be able to feel balanced, feel less stress, and show up as your best self for you and your family. We'll talk about ways to reduce stress and anxiety as a mom. We learn how to practice mindfulness as a mom.
Affirmations Can Be Powerful
Before we go any further, make sure you check out my post Affirmations for Moms to learn why affirmations work and how to use them effectively. I dramatically changed the way I think, and therefore, my attitudes, emotions, mental and spiritual health when I started using affirmations in 2014. I can look back now and see how much I lived in fear and in stress before I began to change the way I think.
The affirmation we are going to use today is:
I am mindful to take time to rest and slow down when I need it.
Say the Affirmation Aloud
So when you feel lonely, it can feel really silly to say that affirmation outloud because it’s not currently true in your own life. You might think, “I just have to get things done, I hate stopping to rest!” But this is the key with affirmations – we use them to rewire our brains and change our habitual thoughts so we can begin to believe in what’s possible and what COULD be true. Then your brain goes to work to come up with ideas to make it happen and your life begins to change for the better!
How to Use the Affirmation
Print it out from my printable set here on Etsy, or write/type it on a piece of paper and tape it up in the spots around your house and in your car where you will see it daily! This keeps the truth before you – reminding you of what’s possible and what could be true for you. It then activates your brain, or motivates your brain, to come up with a plan to make it happen. You’ll find you’ll get creative ideas to make that affirmation come true!
Get Rid of the Hustle Mentality
We have a tendency in American culture to push and push ourselves to achieve, achieve, and get things done. We make our to-do lists the most important thing of the day. We have even been taught (men especially) to ignore our body's and spirit's signals to us to slow down and push forward anyway. That it's weakness to admit we are tired, overwhelmed, exhausted, strung out, stressed out, etc.
I have seen it in the business world for years – HUSTLE HUSTLE! We praise those who've had huge outward success, but for many of them, at home, their marriages are falling apart, their relationships with their kids are fractured and their health is also suffering. It's not all it seems on the outside.
Stop Ignoring Pain & Emotions
For so long, we as a human species have not really understood emotions. We've been very emotionally unintelligent, so we've shamed them instead. I know for years I thought that feeling too many emotions, or feeling deeply meant I was weak! Nothing could be further from the truth. Emotions are simply your brain producing chemicals and hormones based on your thoughts.
Think of your emotions as traffic signals and signs. Negative emotions means you have thoughts going on that are not serving you, or something about the situation or person isn't right for you. Don't ignore that – PAY ATTENTION.
You are not amazing because you push through physical and emotional pain. It's super harmful in the long run to do so and you teach yourself to ignore your most powerful tool as a human and mother – your intuition.
Really become aware of your emotions and your body. When you're feeling physical pain it's a sign your body is hurting and you need to stop and rest, right? Same with your emotions. Negative emotions are your spirit's signals that you need to take a moment to reflect and get to the bottom of whatever's bothering you.
R Ways to Reduce Stress and Anxiety as a Mom
So when I'm feeling stressed out, I take a moment to do one of these six things to figure out why I'm feeling negative emotion and get some mental, emotional and physical rest.
There are many ways to do this: Sometimes it's as simple as stopping and taking a few deep breaths. I'll put my hand over my heart, and take 2-4 slow, deep breaths. I will even talk to myself. Sara, why is this bothering you right now? What about this is upsetting you? Usually the answer comes to me within a day or two.
This works especially well when I'm with my kids and can't get away to take care of myself. This helps me to not take my frustrations out on my kids, because rarely are they the problem when I'm upset! It's usually something much deeper – like I just went on Facebook and saw someone who's in Hawaii, or has a gorgeous new kitchen, and I'm wishing we could go to Hawaii or get a brand new kitchen.
Journaling is a wonderful way to slow down and reflect. If you're afraid other people will read your thoughts, then write it down and shred it or burn it afterwards! Do whatever you need to have a safe space to let out your thoughts and emotions.
Go For a Walk
Going for walk outside can really help to clear you head. Being in nature is such a healthy way to reconnect to your spirit and to give your mind a rest.
Prayer and meditation are so helpful to connecting to your spirit. I encourage you, though, when you're praying, not just to talk, but to listen. Sit in silence and notice the thoughts that come through. That's meditation and it's an important part of prayer. Just like in a relationship – if all you do is talk but don't listen, it's one-sided.
Sometimes we are sick, stressed or feeling not ourselves simply because we need more sleep! Give yourself the respect of getting a good nights' sleep. On days when you are sluggish, if you can, be okay with taking a nap. Even twenty minutes can be extremely helpful!
Take a Day of Rest
In ancient cultures, they observed a day of rest and took it very seriously. Even in Europe, Sundays are still considered a day of rest and many businesses are closed. We've gotten so far away from that in America, but thankfully, we can create that culture in our own homes. Every Sunday I have the mindset that it's a day of rest. I do less housework and really slow down and enjoy the day with my family.
Affirmations Album for Moms and Kids
If you combine the affirmation cards with my affirmations album, you’ll really see transformation in your life! Check out my album here.