The world is very busy and so are our lives. We are pulled in a hundred different directions each and every day - our friends, children, work, romantic relationships, and hobbies demand our full and undivided attention. Eventually we find ourselves at the end of the day, week or even year, wondering where the time has gone. Wondering how we haven't had time for yoga, a solo weekend away, or really developing any sort of sustainable self-care routine. We avoid the reason, but it's clear: we aren't treating ourselves like a priority. We are putting everyone else ahead of us. We are letting the hurricane of life pick us up and toss us around, like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz.
Don't get caught up in this habit. Make yourself a priority, without losing the important people in your life or the productive mindset that accompanies your career. Follow the simple steps below and develop a self-care routine that works for you.
Step 1) Squeeze in self-care. You wake up, you go to sleep. You do this every day - it is already a ritual engrained into your life. Use your already establish routine and add to it! 10 minutes of guided meditation before sleep or upon waking will trigger the happiness button in your brain, calm your nerves, and increase your concentration by letting stress and worries melt away. Apps like CALM (costs $) and INSGHT TIMER (free!) are great tools for integrating meditation into your life.
Step 2) Little changes go a long way. Eating well does not need to be a huge undertaking - take it one step at a time. Start to drink more water (ideally 2-3 litres each day), and start your day with a hot water with lemon. DON'T PANIC - you can STILL HAVE COFFEE. But try to sip a mug of hot water with lemon before your morning cappuccino. It will help alkaline your body, improve digestion (and can even contribute to weight loss!)
Step 3) Physical movement is essential - it can burn excess energy and allow the mind to settle more easily. It can also make you feel amazing and improve your levels of energy throughout the day. If you can't make it to the gym 3 times a week for long workouts don't stress! Studies have shown that 30 minute workouts 5 times a week are better than 2-3x at 1.5-2 hours. Make movement a part of your routine - by biking to the coffee shop, walking to the sea bus/train or meeting a friend for a stroll rather than a glass of wine. By prioritizing physical activity, it becomes another channel that helps make us feel great, rather than a chore or a burden.