Life is manic! There is so much going on generally what with the daily grind but even when we take those external factors out of the equation there are still many pressures for us all, particularly at the moment. “The recession may be officially over” as they say, but we are still feeling the effects of it. And here in the UK– there’s no escaping the chaos that has been created.
It’s all taking its toll. There are days when we feel like we are on top of the world and then there are others when it all seems too much. But when you are a parent, your mood and behaviour is interpreted by your children and can even lead them to share the same emotions.
If we don’t look after ourselves, then how can we be expected to look after anyone else? And then our families share the effects. Be reassured - just because you may need a few moments to assess your own lifestyle balance does not make you a bad mum!
Take some time to have some “me time” and invest in your own happiness. Whether it be a date night with your partner, an evening at the gym or a night out for cocktails with the girls – it all helps recharge those batteries!
A bit of time relaxing can help us become less tense and anxious and in turn, create a nicer environment for those around us. If you struggle to let go and kick those shoes off then why not try some of these options:
1 Massage: There lots of wonderful massage therapists around. Alternatively, you could try twisting your partner's arm into giving you a sensual massage. Enjoying a massage is key to helping you manage your stress and feel relaxed and calm. Massage also helps break down the build up of lactic acid, which is caused by stress and is responsible for knots of tension.
2 Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy oils are a wonderful way for mums to relax and feel better at the end of a busy day. You can light an aromatherapy candle or soak in a bath with a few drops of your favourite essential oil. You could even dilute an aromatherapy oil such as relaxing lavender in a carrier oil and dab some one your temples and wrists.
3 Breathe Deeply: If we live in areas with high-traffic and air pollution there can be a tendency not to breathe deeply. If possible try to spend time in some of Britain’s wonderful green parks and areas of greenery. Take some time out during your lunch hour and take in a deep breath of fresh air. Close your eyes and breathe deeply into your stomach and then breathe out slowly. This deep breathing will help the body switch off adrenaline and is naturally calming.
4 Stretch: Look up and find a local yoga class. A regular practice of yoga can help calm body and mind and give you some time to yourself. You may like to pop into your local library and pick up a book on yoga or try this simple stretch. Lie flat on the ground and put your arms above your head. Imagine someone is gently pulling your arms while your legs are being pulled at the same time. Hold this for the count of 5 and then relax and feel your whole body sinking into the floor.
5 Plan a Reward: At the end of a busy day, make sure you have something to look forward to. It might be a relaxing bath of half an hour with your favourite book or TV programme. Put your housework and family issues aside for a few moments and allow yourself to relax completely. Use this time to recharge and energise yourself.
The more relaxed we are, the more relaxed our family is. To keep our family chilled out – why not set up a quiet space for you all to enjoy so that you can get away from the hustle and bustle in your quiet space together?
You may like to build a relaxation corner in one part of your house. You can fill it with soft cushions, beautiful fabrics or maybe a comfy chair. Creating a corner of the room that is ‘special’ is a great way to encourage everyone to join in and relax as a group. Candles, incense and relaxing music will all add to the calm and atmosphere of this special space.