My friend, Tejal Patel, is a former divorce attorney turned mindfulness advocate. She is a Mindful Mama Coach, Kids and Kundalini Yoga and Meditation teacher and founder of the online training program The Mindful Mama Experience. I encourage you to practice 5 Days of infusing 5 minutes of peaceful pauses everyday. Join her for a RESET The FREE 5-Day Mindfulness Experience starting on March 27, 2017. Sign up here! http://www.TheMindfulMamaExperience.com/5DAYRESET
Do you find yourself on the verge of burnout? Busy moms go to work, prepare meals, entertain their kids, and still have paperwork piling up at the kitchen table after everyone has gone to bed. Moms, if this is you, it’s time to schedule some “Me Time” into your routine.
Whether you’re a working mom or a stay-at-home mom, it’s easy to fall into a trap of taking care of everyone else but yourself. If we want to be the best for those around us, we cannot allow ourselves to feel guilty about taking time to recharge. Infusing peaceful moments through mindfulness and meditation is one of the greatest ways we can take care of ourselves.
Even before I had kids, I started these exercises to pamper myself into a state of peace. I knew the day would come when I would be a mother and have to master calm in the midst of chaos. Finding ways to make “Me Time” a part of the daily routine is a powerful way to infuse more peace when it seems peace cannot be found. Whether you’re a young woman or busy mom, start making “Me Time” a priority now with these three tips!
Tip 1: Mindful Morning
The alarm goes off, and it’s time to start the day. Avoid the urge to connect with the world on Facebook or emails. Instead, connect with you. When you get up, start your morning in front of the mirror. While you brush your teeth, look at yourself in the eyes for 1 full minute. Yes, that’s 1 minute. Take deep breaths as you mentally repeat the words, “I love you.” In this mindful morning exercise, you’re allowing yourself to be centered, completely connected with you and caring for yourself before you connect with the world. It’s okay to start with you. Let this exercise of self-care empower you to better connect with those around you.
Tip 2: Take a Breathing Break
A kindergarten teacher will tell her class to stop and count to 10 while taking deep breaths if they’re feeling overwhelmed. Moms, we know all about these breaks for our kids, but some of us need to permit ourselves to go ahead and breathe. Make an anchor to remind yourself to create a peaceful pause by incorporating the breathing break with another activity you plan to do during the day. Let’s say you do a lot of driving. Put a Post-it note on your dashboard that says, “Breathe deep!” Every time you sit in your car, take a breathing break for 1 minute to help you relax and shift your mood. It’s okay. One minute of this breathing break won’t make you late and will save you from feeling overwhelmed. Your peace is worth it.
Tip 3: Mindful Evening
When it’s finally time for the day to end, allow the peace to continue. Just as you began your day connecting to yourself, you can end your day connecting to yourself. Beyond the mirror exercise, while you are laying in bed, consciously make sure your last thought is not about tomorrow or a to-do list. Don’t allow yourself to regret any mistakes you made during the day. Instead, close your eyes, put your hands on your heart and take deep breathes for 1 minute. Slowly breathe in and repeat in your mind, “I AM _____.” As you exhale, fill in the blank with how you feel. For me, my favorite mindful evening phrases are: “I am safe.” “I am peaceful.” “I am loved.” “I am calm.” “I am grateful.”
Me time is all about reconnecting with yourself and finding your center. It’s not always about going to the spa or long vacations, (even though those are great rituals as well). Life is happening now, and I want to help you with tools to calmly handle stress in the moment. The greatest way to prioritize more me time is to infuse mindful breathing and calm breaks during tasks you are already doing like brushing your teeth, cooking, driving, nursing or bottle-feeding your child or even opening doors.