Happy Burns night everyone! I am desperately excited to sink my teeth into some lovely offal-ie goodness tomorrow night (sickness has delayed tonights festivities) but I'll give you a hearty, slightly whiskey scented, toast nonetheless.
It's been a while eh?
Things I have done since Christmas:
- Spent some lovely time with Frankie-Rose, just hanging out at home or on the beach. I am loving being her mama at the moment.
- Had the mother of all declutters for the THIRD time. Need to blog how life changing this has been.
- Made over 1k selling some of the stuff we decluttered, gave a ton more to charity, and took more still to the dump. Whoa.
- Written one very heartfelt blog post about my love of winter
- Written up two house features for Real Homes and Ideal Home, and shot one new house.
- Hosted one glorious Seeds and Stitches workshop.
However, I have not got my shit together with the blog or social media In any way. I have also been a bit crap at looking after myself. I'm finding it all a bit discombobulating and just can't find the time. Is anyone else feeling that? I'm generally struggling to re-adjust to life post Christmas, nearly 4 weeks later. I'm full of ideas but suddenly lacking in time to the point where I genuinely wonder how I did life before Christmas?! Anyway. I'm taking it easy and trying to prioritise self care at the moment, so I love love loved the post below from Natasha. I have been squeezing in a few minutes of meditation before bed each night, which helps me release all the little stresses of the day. It's wonderful. I am a die hard fan of a long hot bath and rate a walk outside as one of my most effective anti-depressants. So when I read this guest post from Natasha, I sent a huge 'Preach it sister!' over the internet in her direction. Here she is.
Making Me Time
Christmas is a paradox. Annoying and fun, stressful and relaxing, nourishing and depleting. When it comes to stress we are so good at adapting that it’s easy to forget we were even stressed to begin with. Most of my patients don’t identify themselves as stressed but they have all the physical signs of it non-the-less. The Christmas season requires a lot from us in terms of socialising and although it is fun, it’s also stressful to our bodies. So in the weeks following, it’s important to remember to take time to ourselves to relax. Working in even just 10mins each morning, to do something that’s just for you, can make all the difference in helping you bounce back. I’d really recommend an hour a day or half a day a week if you really want to reap the full benefits. Whatever works for your diary just be sure to work it into your diary the same way you fitted in all the Christmas madness. Me-time is just as important as Them-time.
10 mins of calm
If you’ve only got 10mins to play with each day then whatever you do to chill has got to be simple. Here are some of my favourites:
1. Take 10mins to make yourself a cup of herbal tea and drink it in a quiet room, alone if possible. Don’t check your texts, watch TV, read a magazine, plan your day. Just drink your tea. Put all your attention on that tea. What does it taste like? How does it affect you? This is a way to practice mindfulness and it will help you clear your mind of the usual stuff. If you want to take this more in-depth you can follow my audio guide here.
2. Take 10mins to meditate. I’d really recommend using headspace. It starts with a free course of 10 min meditations that are incredibly easy to use. It’s not about non-thinking. It’s different, and that’s what makes it so easy.
If you’ve got a little longer try one of the following:
1. Paint your nails. This may seem ridiculous but it’s great because you can’t do anything while your nails dry!
2. Take a bath. Another good way to buy yourself some alone time.
3. Go for a walk in nature. Nature has immensely nourishing effects on the mind and body.
4. Take the dog for a walk (if you’ve got one).
5. Take the cat for a walk (if you’re feeling adventurous!).
Natasha’s favourite anti-stress Tea
If you need something to help you maintain your energy but also help you relax try this tea.
- Sarsaparilla 25g
- Liquorice 25g
- Vervain 10g
All available from Neals Yard Remedies. NOT RECOMMENDED FOR THOSE WITH HYPERTENSION.
To get the most out of this tea you’ll want to put a couple teaspoons of the blend in cold water on the hob. Then bring it to the boil and simmer it for 10mins before straining.
Sarsaparilla is an excellent nourishing herb. Traditionally used for eczema and as a male tonic. Liquorice is an adaptogen. This means it helps people adapt to stress. It gives you more energy in the long term and reduces your negative physical response to stress. Giving you a calmer outlook on life. Unfortunately, it also raises blood pressure so can’t be used if you’ve got hypertension. It also shouldn’t be used during pregnancy. You can replace it with Ashwagandha if any of that is the case for you. Vervain is a relaxant. It helps you relax without making you drowsy.
Thank you Natasha!
I've been doing a lot of thinking and planning this year, and I've decided to literally schedule in relaxing time. Dave and I work most evenings and lots of weekends, so It's the only way I can do it consistently! So, I'll have early nights with my book scheduled in once a week, running time a few times a week, (cautiously back at it and so far no injuries- CROSSES ALL LIMBS) date night etc, and I'm already feeling really good about it. Have you included any self care resolutions or plans in your January so far?