It's not totally your fault. We are pressured to "do it all", to be available at all times, and to give way more than we receive. Certainly there are great things that come from being successful, making sacrifices and helping others. But then why are so many of us "done"? It's because it's just too much. You have let your life become unbalanced, let your tank to become empty and it's time to replenish yourself. The thing is, it's really hard to do this when you've reached your breaking point. My hope is that for many of you, you are reminded of that time you were "just done" (that's one of the reasons you came to see me initially, right?) but have moved beyond that point. It's possible, though, that you need reminding of the importance of self-care because you've fallen off the wagon. I'd like to show you my favourite ways to replenish the body and put you back on the path to healing.
5 Favourite Ways to Replenish the Body
1. Schedule "me time"
Pick a few things that make you feel great and make regular appointments for them as often as you can. Try massage, pedicures, acupuncture, dinner dates, walks at Island Lake, or nightly journaling. It will be different for everyone, but choose activities or events that make you feel lighter, energized, and at peace. I also suggest booking a few at a time so you don't forget, a month goes much faster as you get older! (so I'm learning)
2. Soup and Tea
The actual act of making food or tea for yourself is nourishing and caring in itself. I love the idea of making a cup of tea or a big pot of soup that gives you not just a feeling of comfort but also a huge dose of nutrients. My favourites are Nettle or Licorice Root teas (caution using licorice if you have high blood pressure) and any soup that begins by making your own bone broth. Often asking yourself the question, "what can I do for myself in this moment?" can be a great step towards self care.
3. Regular Bedtime
Having a bedtime isn't just good for your kids, it's good for adults too. Our adrenal glands, the ones that get burnt out when we are stressed, thrive on a routine. Instead of our bodies thinking "what's she going to do next?" a routine allows us to put energy into other things besides compensating for our wonky schedules. We will then release melatonin and growth hormone at the right time, which allows our bodies to repair - beauty sleep is not a myth!
4. Support your System
If you have reached that "just done" moment then your body really needs a boost. Instead of the adrenaline rush of caffeine or other artificial boosts that just end up depleting you, I recommend herbs and vitamins that support the overdrive mode you are in currently. The fancy name for these herbs is "adaptogens" because they help your body adapt to stressors. Selecting the right herbs for you is a bit of an art, but my favourites are Rhodiola and Ashwagandha. Once you have supported your body you will find that you are no longer as irritable, tired, or worn out, plus you can ride the waves a little better instead of feeling like you're ready to explode if one more thing goes wrong.
5. Decide what's important and ask for help
Ultimately we need to make choices that best reflect the life we want to live. Too often we are caught up in the day to day stuff and haven't made any steps that take us closer to the place we want to end up. So you must decide "what is my story?" In doing that you now have a direction, a compass to guide you towards living the story that you want your life to tell. If you want to be know as an incredible member of the community known for your volunteer work, that's awesome. If you want your kids or grandchildren to remember the time you spent playing outside with them (without a phone in your hand), great. Choose your story and do what matters to you. It is impossible to do it all, but when you are doing what's important you will feel full and energized. And for the things that matter less, ask for help.