Healing Moms Newsletter December 2019
Happy Holidays from the Yoga Inbody team! We are so grateful to close out the year with so many amazing new friends across the globe and happy that you have allowed us to be part of your own journey.
The holidays are in full swing and that can bring a lot of stress - especially when we are mothers with children who have unique needs. I wanted to remind you how important it is to take care of your own energy levels while you navigate through the holidays. It is crucial to implement stress management techniques during times we feel the world expects so much out of us.
Bodies are amazing. As moms with kiddos with special needs we see first hand just how you unique each body can be, and I know you know have learned your kiddo's cues of stress, discomfort, overwhelm and anxiousness. How much attention do you give your own body when you are feeling stressed or anxious? Are you tuned into your own cues?
I wanted to give a few insights on how we can quickly manage our own stress - especially during "the most wonderful time of the year." It is my hope that you will take a moment or two to implement one or more of these ideas when you feel that anxious feeling creeping up on you.
Lindsay's Top 3 Tips for Managing Holiday Stress
Our bodies have built in stress mechanisms that release a whole gamut of hormones when we start to feel anxious. This intrinsic design was used to help our ancestors run from predators with a quick shot of adrenaline and insulin. Most of us aren't running for our lives every day, but we are producing a constant stream of these "fight or flight" hormones because we are more stressed than ever!
The BEST thing we can do for quick, in-the-moment stress management is to MOVE. Creating movement in the uses up the release of chemicals and helps the body return to homeostasis much faster than if they continue to flow through the body.
If possible, I like to put on some music and dance it out. My toddler loves to dance so it's a great way to move some of his energy out too. We do a lot of dance parties: in the kitchen, in the car, in the grocery store - wherever. Movement is my favorite way to relieve stress quickly.
This seems obvious, but when we are in the midst of overwhelm, our breath is not something we often pay attention to. Taking long, deep, and intentional breaths can bring us quickly back to the present moment and stop a stress spiral in its tracks. I use a breathing technique called Nadi Shodana or alternate nostril breathing at LEAST three times a day - sometimes more if things are really busy!
Pro Tip: Do not use alternate nostril breathing if you have to drive shortly after! The practice of alternating breath through the nostrils allows the right side of the brain and the left side of the brain along with the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems to sync - which is deeply relaxing.
Being deeply relaxed is good - but not if you're behind a wheel.
Whatever (or whomever) it is that is causing your moment of overwhelm, connect to it (or him or her.) This is especially useful if it happens to be one of your kiddos that is causing some stress. If we can take a moment and connect to our kids, without needing to worry about schedules, dinner, on-timeness, grades, appointments, practices, or (insert ongoing worry here), we discover how quickly it can dissolve spirals of worry.
I have learned that when I am able to be more present and mindful in my interactions with my family - and others - it actually creates MORE time for me. Without allowing my thoughts to time travel into the past or future I am able to get things done much easier than if I am constantly thinking about the next thing I have to rush to.
Our kiddos, our families - WE crave connection. We acknowledge that our kiddos have feelings that are TOO BIG for them, but we fail to acknowledge feelings that are too big in ourselves.
When we are caught up in feelings that are too big for us, simple connection is one of the fastest ways to bring us back to the present moment. If there is no one to connect to in the moment, connect to yourself. Connect to the feeling you would rather be having. Remember who you are without the endless tasks of motherhood and adulthood.
Allow yourself space to feel connected to yourself, your family, and the world around you.
If you are ready to strengthen your connection to self and would like to talk about attending a Healing Moms retreat, we would love to talk with you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a call with us.
Wishing you the best and brightest holiday season,
Lindsay and Elizabeth