As I stated in my last post, I am in transition, as are so many people I know right now. It is easy to get angry, enraged even; to blame others for where we are and to stay stuck in the very space we’ve said we wanted NOT to be in. That doesn’t make the transition quicker, it simply makes it harder. Swimming upstream does not feel good.
Because of my commitment to well-being and making self-care not simply a catch phrase, but a moment to moment lived experience, I have discovered a few ways to not simply survive this transition, but to thrive in it. Because transitions can WIPE YOU OUT if you don’t take care of yourself.
DO NOT isolate yourself:
It is the nature of some animals to go into hiding when they are wounded. For our four-legged earth family members, that may be the thing to do, but for us humans, it is important that we reach out to people and be with them, especially during hard times. A friend of mine told me early in this “moment” I’m in that if I felt as if I were falling into “an abyss” (and I did) to not be afraid to call her if I needed to. I have also taken this time to take walks, yoga classes and have tea with friends. Finding ways to come out of your shell helps you to weather the storm.
(Re)Commit to your spiritual practice:
For some, it is hard times that bring us to our knees, our cushions and our places of worship. When we feel we have nowhere else to turn, going within feels like a very scary place to go, especially if you’re feeling alone and coming face to face with some hard memories.
I have been able to find my center and some ground beneath my feet by maintaining my practice of meditation and yoga each day (something I had slacked on for a little while before). The beauty of our spiritual practices is that they give us the training we need to be able to hold ourselves in love during our rough times.
There’s nothing like exercise to get those endorphins pumping through your blood. Those endorphins helps to take the edge off and help us feel better. My morning yoga practice and occasional dancing (gotta get more of this in) has done wonders for me. I am in better shape than I’ve been in a while and feel stronger in my body, which is a great motivator.
Get enough sleep
Change can be VERY emotional and it’s harder to look on the bright side of things when your body is exhausted. Make sure you are getting at least 7 hours of sleep a night. I know 8 is great and 9 would be divine, but I think starting with 7 and building one’s way up is a better way to go.
Eat well (as well as you can)
When you’re sad or simply needing some comfort, many of us grab comfort food(sweets are my comfort food of choice). It may feel good in the beginning, but after a while, your body pays a big price–You CRASH from whatever binge you were on. It’s time to lovingly put our comfort food eating monster to bed and grab foods that both comfort us and feed us nutritionally,. Here are a fr of my favorite quick ”Healthy” comfort foods.
Gluten Free (or whole wheat) toast with olive oil, avocado, salt and a little salt and pepper (I sometimes add smoked turkey or roasted chicken to it. Omit if you’re vegan)
- Raw/Vegan Donut Holes
- Mix nuts
- Sweet Potato Fries (great alternatives to regular fries)
- Creamy Date Smoothie
- Coconut Ice Cream
- Herb Popcorn
Pampering ourselves is something mamas don’t do enough of. At the beginning of June, I created the 30 day Vibrant Mama Self-Care challenge. It was a way for mamas to collectively share in the task of focusing on their self-care. This transitional time has emphasized the importance of pampering myself even more. I see pampering as an action that shows us we are deserving of doing nice things for ourselves. Pampering myself also connects me with other parts of myself that often take the back burner to my life as a mama. Being a mama is one of the many roles I have in life and it’s important to connect to and nurture those other parts as well.
Seek professional help:
If your sadness doesn’t let up, gets worse or if you feel like you’re going to hurt yourself or someone else, seek professional help. That help could come from your therapist, pastor or spiritual counselor. Know that you have resources and to USE them.