5 Things You Definitely Want In Your Wellness Routine
Jun 17, 2020
What is a "wellness routine" and why do I need one?
Maybe you already have one. Maybe you had one but then went through a life change and now need to find a new one. Maybe you have never had one but now you are ready to feel better and be in a good groove. Well, yay you! Let's talk about why a routine is so beneficial.
First of all, mama's need to take care of themselves. You can't pour water from an empty cup and we are constantly being asked for a sip. What happens when our cup is empty? I can't speak for everyone but for me, it's like Satan's spawn himself emerges. I'm exhausted, easily angered, annoyed at everyone and everything, and I just want to be left alone. Nottttt exactly good qualities in a mother of 4 tiny humans.
We know it's important to take care of ourselves, so why can't we do it? Priorities, friends, priorities. Somewhere along the way, the need to take care of ourselves falls to the bottom of the list. Sometimes it falls OFF the dang list. And when something falls off the list, squeezing it back on the list takes dedication and purposeful effort. So let's make some effort! If you don't do it, it won't get done, another priority will take it's place, and you will continue feeling run-down, cranky, and blah. So what do we need to include in a good, well-rounded wellness routine? Let's break it down:
Did you skim over the top part to get to the 5 things? Look at you, you time saver. I like you. Ok, here we go:
- Sleep. Sleep is the foundation of all that is good in the world. Ok, that may be slightly dramatic, but adequate sleep is important. The frustrating thing is, this part is not always in our control. We've all heard that the recommended amount of sleep is 7-9 hours per night, but what happens if you're not even close to that? If you are at a stage in life that does not allow for a solid night's sleep, I feel you. I feel like I haven't gotten a solid night's sleep in 9 years. Do your best and focus on what you CAN control. Can you start winding down a little earlier? Can you put your screens down a little sooner? Can you start to develop a bedtime routine so your body can transition from chaos to sleepy? What can you control? Some suggestions include: get into a journaling practice at night where you spend a few minutes writing down what you are grateful for from the day (see #5). Try out one of the fantastic meditation apps. Do a light stretching routine to help calm your mind and release built up tension from the day. Read a few chapters out of a motivating book. Take a warm bath. Whatever it is, find what works for you and implement it.
- Fuel. You can't expect a car to run if you put trash water in it, right? We need to add the right fuel so we can keep up with life. This doesn't mean you need to be chugging sports drinks and ripping open protein bars with your teeth as you chase after kids. This means, eat the right way for YOUR body. Make sure you get the right amount of water for you. Eat enough fresh foods. Remove guilt and shame from eating. Eat consistently throughout the day to keep energy up and blood sugar stable (aka, avoid the hangries). Know the foods that cause your body to feel sluggish and replace them with foods that power you. Need help figuring this out? Schedule a free 20 minute consultation call with me and we can discuss your specific goals and how I can help. Please know, that restricting foods can cause stress..so kind of the opposite of what we're going for here.
- Stress Management. Managing stress at this time in your life may be a distant goal. I get it. Kids are stressful. Work is stressful. Family can be stressful. Friends can be stressful. Even being in a room by yourself can be stressful, (why is it quiet? Is the baby crying? Did I leave the garage door open? Does the dog look mad at me?). Stress, my dear, will always be there. Whether it's good stress or bad stress, it's here to stay. So how are you going to handle it so it doesn't weigh you down? What in the past did you do that you enjoyed, looked forward to, relied on, or helped you through a stressful time? Commit to doing one small stress relieving activity per week (ideally daily but we'll work on that) to help you relax, refresh, and recharge.
- Movement. Notice that I didn't say exercise? Doesn't it just sound more flowy and breezy to say "get 30 minutes of movement" versus "get 30 minutes of exercise"? No? Just me? If you aren't used to doing any form of structured activity, that's totally fine. Nobody is asking you to run an Ironman. The benefits of moving your body is something we are all aware of at this point, but why is it so tough to add in? One thought , now hear me out, you don't have an activity that you enjoy! This is the most crucial of steps and people tend to skip it because they think they need a gym membership or group fitness class or marathon training in order for it to count. Nope! If you love the gym scene, SWEET! Get in there! If you would pay money to NOT go to a gym, that's cool too. Find an activity that you enjoy that moves your body. Suggestions include: a family hike, playing tag/soccer/baseball/etc with the kids in the yard, a solo walk with the dog while listening to a podcast, a spin class with a friend, a bike ride with your spouse, a dance party in the living room, or an online Zumba class. Options are endless but find something you enjoy. And, hey, a fun bonus is that when you enjoy something, it's a stress reliever (see #3).
- Mindset. I added this one to the list because I'm a firm believer in having a positive outlook. It can be the difference between breezing through a terrible time to completely crumbling and imploding. To some, this does not come naturally. I think we all know a Debbie Downer in our lives who completely sucks the life out of the room.
If you are surrounded by a bunch of Debbies it can really bring you down. Tack on a stressful event and it doesn't take much to send you spiraling into a black pit of despair. If you can't think of a Debbie in your life, that's either great or it means you are Debbie, in which case, here's a hug to you and let's keep reading. Adding positive mindset work into your wellness routine can help get you through anything. Gratitude journals are a super simple way of focusing on the positive. An example of this is writing down a certain number of things that you are grateful for each day. Some people do this first thing in the morning to start off on a positive note, and some do it at night as a way to wind down and fall asleep content. Whatever works for you. When you focus on the positive you tend to see more positive. Same as if you are looking for someone who is driving a white car...ALL you see are white cars.
So that's it. A few components to add into your wellness routine. If it seems overwhelming, break it down. Add one thing each week until you've built yourself a nice little plan that works for you. Side note: your plan will likely change. Be it a vacation, an illness, a change in seasons, holidays, etc. Something will always happen that throws you off your plan. This is normal. It's expected. It's life. This is why it's so important to build in the things that you enjoy so that it's easier to get back to your plan and continue to feel like a SuperMama!
Oh and guess what?!?! If you don't know where to start or if you need a bit of variety, I have just the thing! The Cinch Wellness Challenge! It's happening, starting July 6th.
During this 30 day challenge you will get 1-2 tasks every day to complete. That's it. Super simple, some may even say it's a "cinch"...see what I did there? Tasks are fitness, nutrition, and sleep oriented. You will go through the 30 days with other people wanting to build a little wellness into their day. Encourage each other, commiserate with each other, challenge each other to push ahead! And did I mention, every time you complete a task your name gets entered into a drawing for prizes along the way?! Woo! Sign up HERE . Bring a friend. Win some prizes. Develop a better wellness routine. See you there!