You have a million things to get done but not sure where your to-do list is, and you haven’t sat still for a minute to even eat lunch. Sound familiar?
After I started doing so much better with my health, the overload from multitasking and trying to “do it all” led me to a new problem: exhaustion and burnout. Which led to more frequent flare-ups and frustration.
I depleted my energy resources into every task that appeared before me and forgot to do what was most important for my own productivity: rest.
I discovered meditation through yoga but didn’t look into doing it as it’s own separate practice until my physical health began to improve and weaned off my anxiety medications. I needed something instead of placing myself in the dangerous spot of hoping it would all work out.
I previously posted about the basics of how to meditate, but here I’m sharing the many ways I use it. It’s such a diverse practice and I rave about it’s benefits to others I know struggling with anxiety and pain management.
Whether you’re an unorganized mama, dealing with drama at work or just simply tired all the time, meditation has a benefit for you.
1. SLOW DOWN A BUSY DAY: Stop. Close your eyes. Check-in with how you’re feeling. Are you happy? Angry? Exhausted? Off task? On point? Take a minute to set the day’s goals.
2. CHECK-IN WITH YOUR BODY: Sometimes I feel like a multitasking machine only to crash and burn right before school gets out and dinner needs to be made. Scheduling meditation throughout the day to check in with my pain level and whether I need to rest has major benefits on my physical health.
3. CHECK-IN WITH YOUR MIND: This is the method I use most often for meditation, as a release for anxiety and overwhelm. Take a few minutes to calm your mind and stop doing and simply be.
4. THINK THROUGH A TASK: Not sure where to start on a project? Need to give advice to a friend? I practice “walking meditation” or sit outside in the sunshine when I need to use this one. Nature is your friend. Use it.
5. CREATE A SCHEDULE: When I’m feeling stressed because the house is messy or guilty because the kids are feeling neglected, I take a moment to write out a mental schedule for the remainder of the day. Should I plan a fun outing and focus on the kids? Or round up the troops and deep clean the house before dinner?
6. RESET PRIORITIES: How are you progressing through the day? Are you putting off what needs to be done and distracting yourself with menial tasks? Setting my top three priorities for the day and tackling those frees up so much room in my mind for calm and clarity. Once I get the most pressing things off my list instead of procrastinating, my productivity increases.
7. REASSESS TASK OVERLOAD: One thing I have learned is that multitasking doesn’t not equal success. When you multitask, you leave a wake of unfinished projects if you’re not careful. You aren’t able to give your best if you can’t focus on the task at hand. I found that when I stop multitasking and work off a chronological list, the laundry gets done, the game plays on without interruption and the person on the phone gets my undivided attention.
8. BENEFIT FROM DEEP BREATHING: Many times when we’re overworked and stressed out, our breathing is sporadic or too fast. Stopping to practice slow and steady breathing has multiple health benefits including lowering stress levels.
9. TAKE A POWER NAP: One thing I work into my schedule each day since I got sick is rest time. Sometimes I take a nap, sometimes I watch a show. My body can’t keep up like it used to and I pay for it at night if I haven’t intentionally scheduled breaks.
10. TAKE A “ME” BREAK: Sometimes the kids are driving me crazy and I just need to get away before I join in on the whining. I do a quick 3-5 minute session where I focus on slowing my breathing and quieting my mind so that I am more patient and have a better perspective when I walk back out.
ARE YOU UP FOR THE CHALLENGE?
Which way appeals most to you? Which ones have you tried without knowing it?
If you smiled at this and said “that’s nice”, you won’t get around to it later by adding it to your to-do list. We hardly set self-care as a top priority, but the thing is, nothing you do will be done well if you’re not pouring good things into your self so that you can give to others.
Start with taking 2 minutes to yourself. Comment below on your experience–and remember, every person is unique so different methods are worth playing with!
To learn more, read my previous post on The Basics of Meditation.
Breathe in. Breath out. You’ve got this!