We all know how good it feels to be calm. It’s a feeling many of us are craving more of. It’s so easy to rush through our days and wonder why we feel so damn stressed and drained -- without doing much to change it.
The thing is :::
// I want you to get the same amount done each day (or more!) but enjoy it so much more.
// I want you to end your day with a quiet mind.
// I want you to have the tools to tap into that beautiful, calm state of mind, anytime.
// I want you to feel in control of overwhelm.
// I want you to feel like the bright, shiny, lovely you every day!
So, my friends, here are my 5 best tips to help you shift from stress + overwhelm towards ease + calm.
1/ Set an intention.
How do you want to feel today? Getting clear on this, and bringing it to the forefront of your mind is a game changer. I often affirm my personal favourite -- I get everything done with ease -- first thing in the morning before organising my day. Immediately it’ll switch the vibe from frantic checklists running through my mind, to calm and composed planning + inspired action. You can use the same intention day after day, or mix it up to suit how you feel. Plant the seed of intention into your mind and watch how these ease-full states show up in your day.
A few suggestions: I am centred, calm and balanced / I am mindful and patient / I am filled with gratitude and kindness / All is well
2/ Consciously create some space in your day.
I think it’s safe to say most of us (optimistically) overcommit. Our days are packed full of to-do’s and any down time can be tainted with a little guilt. Honour yourself and your energy by scheduling in breaks. Allow time to have lunch on the grass, or head to the beach after work. It’s ok to listen to the new Beyonce song you (well, I!) love on repeat for half an hour without emailing at the same time. Enjoy the space and presence and notice how that lightens the stress and overwhelm.
3/ Connect in with your breath.
When that feeling of stress arises -- take a few moments to connect in with your breath, our only constant, our physical anchor. Breathe deep down into your belly and really focus on slowing the breath down. My yoga teacher recently taught me that the yogi’s (you know, the ones in the Himalayas that devote their entire life to zen + love) take a full minute for one inhale and one exhale. Slow that breath down baby, and feel the instant calming response within your nervous system.
I bet you knew I was gonna say this huh! For 5 minutes or 50 minutes -- whatever you can do -- make it a part of your day. It may be a guided meditation on your cushion first thing in the morning, a walk in nature focusing on your breath, or 5 minutes of deep breathing and calming affirmations before bed. Find your style, find what fits with your life and find what YOU love. You’ll be zen in no time ;)
5/ Stretch out that beautiful body.
We hold so much tension in our bodies, sometimes years of stored up stresses. And tension in our bodies equals tension in our minds. If I go a few days without a juicy stretch, I notice I’m more irritable and easily stressed (um, no thanks!). Doesn’t it make all the sense in the world that when our body is open and energy is free-flowing, our minds and hearts will be too. It might look like a few relaxing stretches before bed, or devoting to a yin yoga class once a week. Prioritising time to release that physical tension will make a world of difference to your mental state - I can promise you that.
Here's to calmer, brighter days, lovely ones.