Sometimes we don’t notice the whirlwind that we’re in until someone else points it out. We get so distracted with our present lives: we drive to and from work, we go to school for hours out of the day, we meet with people on the daily, we take care of chores, we run errands, we work on projects, we do a million different things and we rarely look anywhere else but ahead. We rarely make the time to slow down and enjoy the moment. It’s easier said than done, I know, but have you ever wondered what it truly feels to be in the moment?
To recognize how your body is speaking to you, letting you know that maybe what you thought was normal this whole time is just your body on autopilot?
To be able to enjoy being around friends or family without feeling like they’re just an added load to your stress?
To have the ability to be at school or work without a million other things going on in your mind?
To know that those migraines that you just recently (or not so recently) started having are something that you might be able to improve?
To see that the skin reactions you’re having (hives, acne, rashes, etc.) can possibly get much better rather than get much worse?
I’m sure you’ve heard people say these phrases all the time, “slow down”, “take a breather”, “relax”. Maybe you’ve even said these phrases to people yourself. We say these phrases so much that they have become cliché, they have become words that have no meaning behind them. We say them to each other all the time, but never truly act on it. HOW do we slow down? HOW do we relax?
Make the time to slow down, because by slowing down, you’re doing yourself and your body a favor. Essentially, you’re on your way to an amazing journey to self-love! Here’s how to start:
1. Make the time to silence your electronics. I’m not saying to turn off your phone or tv all week or even all day. I know sometimes it’s hard to let go of our electronics because our connections to the outside world are important, but guess what? You’re important too! Designate 15-20 minutes once a week to focus on yourself and your body. What is your body telling you? Are you tired? Do you need a nap? Do you notice some tension on your shoulders? Your eyes feel a little warm? Was your school/work day mentally draining? Lay down and let your body speak to you.
2. Make the time to go for a 15-20 minute stroll. Yes, sometimes we “don’t have time” or we “can’t afford the time”. But when we have all these warning signs that our body is giving us, how is 10-15 minutes of fresh air going to do any more harm? When you’re walking, focus on what you see. Are there any trees around? What color are the leaves? Are there any people around? What do you hear? What about the sky? Any clouds? Enjoy your surroundings.
3. You are your own expert. What do you enjoy doing that you haven’t done in a while? Do you enjoy journaling? Maybe you like coloring or painting. Or maybe you like making collages. Maybe you’re not into all that artsy stuff and you simply like listening to music. Maybe you enjoy taking your dog to the dog park. Or maybe you enjoy the simple pleasures of a fresh cup of coffee and a magazine. Do you enjoy cooking? Whatever it is that you enjoy doing, do it!
Make the time to unwind and smile again. Make the slow down and enjoy the ride…