Being overwhelmed sucks doesn’t it?
Being overwhelmed sucks, doesn’t it?
It never ends; there is ALWAYS something to be done, and it is easy to feel overwhelmed at times.
We get up, make a drink, do some washing, load the dishwasher, get dressed, and finally have our breakfast. We then get the kids up, fed, dressed, ready for school, and off to the bus (if we have them of course).
Then the “real work” begins (because of course, looking after a home and/or family is just a hobby)…
We send emails, pay some bills, do some invoicing, social media marketing, and attempt to do some accounting without going mad.
We stress about where our next customer is coming from, how we are going to find the time to learn how to use Mailchimp, why we need a social media strategy and how in the hell we are going to implement it without creating an extra four hours in each day.
After doing hours of work, if we have a family, the kids come home, we chase them up to put their things away, help them with homework, take them to sports or social events, and wonder what the heck we’re going to cook for dinner tonight. If we don’t have a family, we might catch up with friends or family, care for a loved one or do some voluntary work.
Some of us might even have a full-time job to pay the bills and support our part-time business.
Perhaps, if we’re lucky, we get to sit for 30 minutes to watch a TV show before we have a shower and go to bed.
Keeping up to date with self-care when you manage a home AND a business can be a challenge.
Don’t get me wrong, I AM grateful, but there are times when it can all get just a little much and we sink into overwhelm! There are times when we can feel as though all we do is look after other people and never ourselves.
So, how can we introduce some self-care into our routine?
It doesn’t have to be extravagant or hugely time-consuming, and it doesn’t have to cost money. But it does have to be something that makes you feel less stressed, less anxious and more in control.
I’m going to give you some easy and quick tips for introducing some self-care into your routine.
Have a bath
Use your favourite bubble bath, or bath salts. Perhaps add some Epsom Salts, or a few drops of essential oils. Light some candles, and enjoy a glass of wine or a cup of tea (whichever floats your boat).
Spend time in nature
Take some time to enjoy your garden, sit in the sun, smell the flowers (or pull a few weeds). When exposed to the sun, our body produces Vitamin D, which helps us to absorb calcium. Not only does it feel good, it’s also good for our bones.
Read a book
It doesn’t have to be a fiction book; it could be a biography, travel book or business guide. Ideally, it will be something that either allows you to “escape” for a while, or motivates or inspires you.
Get some screen time
Watch your favourite movie or TV show. I love to escape into an alternative world for a while, and for me, Netflix is a perfect way to do this. There is a huge amount of variety to choose from, from documentaries to reality shows, comedies to action movies.
Listen to an audio book
I have a Kindle, and often, for a few extra dollars, I can buy the audio version of a book, too. With Audible being owned by Amazon, this means that the audio and written versions will sync with each other. I love that I can go out in the car, and it will automatically start playing from where I stopped reading in the book. Just like with Netflix, there is something for every taste.
Chat to a friend
With our online communities and ability to “talk” to anyone, anywhere, at any time, I think that we have, in many ways, actually reduced our communication with others. How often these days do we pick up the phone and have a real conversation? We talk in text, or Facebook likes or comments. Call someone who gets you, who makes you laugh until you pee your pants (or maybe that’s just me; must do those pelvic floor exercises!), and who makes you forget about all of the “have-to-dos”, even if it’s only for half an hour.
Have a hobby
Take up a new hobby, or rediscover an old one. When we have a family, or start a business, we can often forget what we used to enjoy doing. I took up Judo at 40, and absolutely loved it. Sadly, it didn’t love me and I spent more money on physio than I did on the Judo lessons! Now, I enjoy walking and swimming. It doesn’t have to be a sport; it could be singing, knitting, cooking, gardening, beekeeping, yoga, or creative writing.
Take a daytime nap
I know, I know – you are 40 not 80, and daytime naps are often thought of as being activities for children or more mature people. But, often when we are stressed, we don’t sleep as well as usual, and exhaustion can add to feelings of anxiety, worry and overwhelm. Taking the time to replenish our bodies and minds with sleep can be just the ticket to feeling better.
Did you know that by getting rid of clutter, you could eliminate 40% of your housework? I’d say that’s a great reason to rid yourself of unwanted items! Having “stuff” littering flat surfaces, blocking pathways and meaning that things take twice as long to put away, can contribute greatly to feeling out of control and overwhelmed.
Listen to music and if you feel like it… DANCE! Playing our favourite music can invigorate us and bring to mind happy times. The act of moving our bodies to music gets our blood pumping and produces “happy” chemicals such as Dopamine into our brain.
How do you look after yourself? I’d love to know!