We all experience stress, right? We experience it, sure, but we don't have to let it control us. Stress is linked to the six leading causes of death - heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide - and yet we so often leave it untreated under the assumption that it's just normal. Our bodies are meant to handle stress, but not constant stress. So it's vital that we learn how to manage those daily stressors in a healthy way. Here are my top tips for healthy stress management for busy mommas. I challenge you to choose three to begin implementing today, and let me know how it goes! If you're looking for more tools and guidance for better stress management, register for my free Master Your Rituals mini course. We'll kick things off on April 29! I'd love to have you there.
My first and most impactful tip for managing stress as a busy mom is to build in quiet time for yourself throughout your day. Mine comes first thing in the morning when I sit down to meditate. I have an app that I use (Insight Timer) and I give myself 5-10 minutes to solitude. Sometimes I listen to a guided meditation. Sometimes I sit in complete silence. Either way, this is the one moment when I know no one needs me. There are no lunches to make, no juice boxes to open, no butts to wipe. Just me and my breath. This has done wonders for my stress levels and my patience. Allowing myself to calm down and breathe in solitude has given me the tools to do the same in stressful situations, so I respond to the crazy mindfully rather than automatically.
Some people don’t like being alone, but I believe it’s part of our nature as humans. While we obviously thrive in social settings, I think solitude is essential to truly knowing ourselves. It’s only when we silence the outside world that we can really tune into who we are and what we want. Plus, after catering to tiny humans and husbands all the time, some time and space alone is a welcomed reprieve.
Get a Hobby
Find something that you love doing and doing it as often as you can! For me, I love doing yoga and making things with my hands. So I make sure to do both throughout my week. This allows me to blow off steam, relax a little, and do something that I actually want to do among the sea of things that I have to do, which signals to my brain that my desires matter too. Not only does it feel really nice to practice a hobby, but it also boosts feelings of self-worth and self-confidence as you remind yourself that you deserve joy and care too.
Move Your Body
There’s nothing quite like a good endorphin rush to wipe all the stress away. It may seem like a lot, but I encourage you to move your body daily. Sweat and release every day. Give your being the chance to release some toxins and some tension by making movement a daily practice.
Find Your Tribe
As a female, I’ve always felt like I was constantly being pinned against other females. All the comparison BS forever had me saying “I just don’t like other girls” - but here’s the thing - the only other humans on this planet that even remotely understand what you’re going through as a busy wife and mom are other busy wives and moms. #truestory Once I realized that, I stopped telling myself that old story and started seeking women who understood me, who supported me, who liked the same things as me. Now I have this incredible tribe that I can lean on, complain to, laugh with - it’s been incredibly therapeutic and also really healing for my soul. So stop saying you hate other women - they’re your people and you need them in your corner.
Ask for Help
We all want to be SuperWoman. The martyr is a title we often covet. But the truth is, we can’t do it all and we don’t have to. So next time you feel stressed, ask for help. Ask a spouse, a parent, a cousin, an aunt - whoever - for a little time alone. Don’t have a spouse or close family? Refer to the previous tip and find your tribe. Find other moms who are willing to swop kid duty so you all get some time to yourselves. There is help available - you just have to be open to receiving it.
Nothing is more stressful than constantly being reminded of how amazing someone else’s life is while you’re covered in spit-up, wiping butts, and scrubbing floors, am I right? Or at least how perfect they want you to think it is, because no one’s life is perfect. But it can be really hard to remember that sometimes, right? So what I’ve found really helpful has been to just eliminate the comparison for a while. Give your brain and break and unplug from all the online noise for a bit, and just feel those stress levels go down as a result.
This one goes hand-in-hand with unplugging. While you unplug, get outside! Ground yourself in Mother Earth. Feel the sun on your skin and the earth beneath your feet. Hug a tree if you want to, I don’t care. But do this with the intention of grounding yourself in the energy of the earth. This connection is what connects us all, and it inherently brings us back to ourselves. So tap into some of the goodness.
Drink More Water
Our bodies are mostly made of water, and when we deprive ourselves of that necessary resource we negatively impact all parts of ourselves. Dehydration can cause headaches, brain fog, fatigue, and a host of other problems, which only add to an already stressful state. So take a second a just drink some today.
Breathing and oxygenating the body is so powerful. Like water, our bodies need air to live, but in every moment the breath is literally all we have. Should our breath leave us, we would cease to exist. And most of the time, life and stressors can cause our breath to become shallow and quick. Slowing down the breath and really deepening it allows the body to fully oxygenate itself, which in turn makes all organs and systems function so much better. Not to mention, intentional breath work has incredible healing power and reminds us of our infinite connection to the Source within us all.
Happy Stress Management!