As a busy woman, executive or business owner – I imagine that you’re probably a pretty good plate spinner or whirling dervish, as you get pulled in multiple directions on any given day to fulfill your duties as boss, manager, mom, cat herder, taxi driver, friend, lover, confident, and a whole lot more.
It’s exhausting isn’t it?
If you’re not careful,
If the plate spinning goes on too long, it can turn you into a walking zombie as you go through the motions checking off the boxes on your long list of to dos, as you get more and more disconnected and out of touch with your body, your feelings and your spirit, so you can “just get through the day.”
How DO you manage all of those multiple channels running at a time?
It’s like you’re a smart phone with all these different apps running in the background ALL of the time. (There’s the what’s for dinner app, the pick up the kids and take them to practice app, the be a great boss app, the I’m a wonderful wife app, the get stuff done app, and so on, and so on, and so on…)
Avoiding the zombie apocalypse can be challenging for sure, especially if you don’t take time out for yourself.
Otherwise you run the risk of having your battery die and leaving you stranded, brain dead in the middle of an important meeting.
Has that ever happened to you? Where even a stiff cup o’java can’t even help…?
Here are 7 simple things you can do to help revive your brain, boost your energy and get you focused and back on track and prevent you from turning into one of the walking dead.
Take time to stop and breathe for goodness sake!
All that running and gunning has you breathing more shallowly which doesn’t feed your brain sufficiently.
Take 5 minutes in a quiet space to take a few slow, deep belly breaths. Inhaling in through the nose as your belly rises and out through the mouth. Doing so will help slow down your system and lower your cortisol and stress levels.
Bonus exercise: make a sticky note and put it on your computer or in a prominent place where you will see it regularly that just says BREATHE to remind you.
Repeat as often as necessary.
This is something you can do in your office or even in the bathroom if you don’t want your co-workers looking at you funny. Cross your right elbow over to your left knee as you raise your knee up and then cross your left elbow over to your right knee as you lift it up – alternating left and right for a minute or two (you can also do this while sitting).
When you do movement that crosses the midline of the body, it integrates the left and right hemispheres of the brain, gets your blood flowing and creates greater coordination. It also increases cerebrospinal fluid pumping up to your brain which helps increase concentration, focus, and memory.
Get out from behind your monitor, get off the phone, and go outside for a walk.
The sunshine helps trigger the production of vitamin D and serotonin, one of your “happy chemicals” that the body naturally produces to raise your spirits and brighten your mood.
Other things you can do while on your walk include stopping to smell the flowers (lavender in particular) and eating some dark chocolate (in moderation) as you walk around the block.
Lavender, vanilla, and chocolate are proven to release endorphins, (another one of your happy chemicals) while decreasing the production of the stress-related hormone glucocorticoid and cortisol, which suppresses your immune system and leads to weight gain.
Besides, what could be better than a walk in the sunshine with chocolate –right?
Tap into your phone and listen to a guided meditation to slow you down and calm your system. There are a ton of apps available these days (gazillions at last count), so you are sure to find a mediation app that suits you.
Here are a few of my favorites:
Mary Maddux – Meditation Oasis
Vishen Lakhiani – The 6 Phase Mediation
and Calm: Meditation and Simple Guided Mindfulness to Sleep, Relax & Breathe
I can hear you now, “I can’t meditate…” but think of it this way, these are just really nice people with pleasant voices talking quietly in your ears to help you still your mind, breathe, and find some fresh perspectives to try on for just a few minutes.
That’s all. How hard can that be?
Laughter really is the best medicine.
These days it’s easier than ever to find a ton of videos bursting with puppy cuteness, silly antics of cats, carpool karaoke, and so much more. You can even ask your friends on Facebook to recommend their favorite videos that had them bust a gut and book mark them on your computer or phone.
Next time you’re stressed out, just pull up one of those bad boys and have yourself a good belly laugh. Laughter creates a powerful 1-2 punch on your stress by lowering the stress hormones of cortisol and epinephrine while triggering the production of endorphins which can relieve some physical pain and enhances the effectiveness of T-cells to boost your immune system.
Here’s my latest fav with James Cordon from the Late Late show and Adele as they tour around London.
Banana! Yes, eat one.
Bananas are high in potassium, known to help regulate blood pressure which rises during times of stress. Many folks have found that by eating a banana when they’re stressed can help improve their energy and recovery time.
Guess what – you now have Full Permission to color, just like when you were a kid.
Art: It does a body good.
I was just recently given a mindfulness coloring book by a dear friend of mine. (Apparently, they’re all the rage these days). Grab yourself some colored pens and take your doodling to a whole new level as you color away while on that super exciting conference call or virtual meeting.
It can help you stay calm as it quiets all the noise going on in your mind.
It also helps you find a state of “Flow” – that place of being so engaged in something that you lose track of time by almost being in a meditative state. Which, can leave you in a much more calm state when you’re done.
There you have it – 7 simple ways to catch your breath, recharge your batteries and clear your mind to keep the zombies at bay for another day and maintain some balance of your body, mind, and spirit.
Let me know how you do with these, and which one you find to be most useful!
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