Does back-to-school, back to the "new normal", and back to work, work, work have you spinning instead of serene?
Fall breezes and autumn orange leaves signal summer is over. Yep, the slower paced summer days linger in our memory as we welcome cooler days, pumpkin spice (or not), sports, sweaters, bonfires, back-to-school, and rushed routines.
Your "new normal" is school online, partially online, and/or face-to-face. No matter how you and your personal kids are back to school, many are stressed as they juggle one Zoom room to the next. You're "Zooming" your day away or you have a hybrid of virtual and face-to-face teaching and learning. No matter what, the days have gone from free flowing to rushed. Rapidly attending or leading one meeting after another, running kids to sport's events, frantically figuring out family schedules, and devising dinner plans. You are no stranger to stress.
But there is a better way.
How can you embrace the calm in the rush?
3 Ways to be Mindful in the Rush
1. Listen to your body
During excruciating intestinal surgery recovery, my doctor delivered wise words, "Listen to your body." I had to tune into every single bodily function. Doing so made me keenly aware that I'd ignored my body's needs for more than five decades. Sure, I took care of myself eating well, exercising (sometimes), and resting when needed. But not in the earlier days. During those days, I thought I was invincible. (Well, I may not have actually thought that but I sure acted like it.) I rarely got eight hours of sleep. I ran on coffee and chocolate caffeine. I exhausted my body to the point of a nervous break down. Not cool.
Now, I totally tune into my body. What does that mean? Well, I'm mindful about how every morsel I put in my mouth makes me feel. If it makes me feel great, I repeat. If not, don't repeat. Am I thirsty? Am I tired? I listen.
Research states that often times we eat when we are really just thirsty. By being mindful, we can give our bodies exactly what they want and need instead of acting on our stress soothing whims. (Anyone relate to stress eating?) Just drink some water and go for a walk instead.
Your body is like your best friend, it gets you everywhere you need to go. So listen like you would to a friend. Tune in and give it what it needs.
It takes being intentional to just sit. To listen. Take some time to just sit with a cup of coffee or tea. Listen to the birds. Listen to a fountain. Listen to the silence.
To listen, be still and silent.
2. Listen to others
We often aren't still. Even when someone is talking to us our minds are racing thinking about what we're going to do or say next. Listening to others takes tuning in. Be intentional about being present. Ditch your task lists and think about others in the presence of others. Be present! 100%.
I've written about this before. Listen and silent comprise of the same letters. Isn't it interesting? To listen, be silent.
Recently, a mom of a school-age student told me she was overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with doing school at home and connecting virtually to teachers. There are so many technical issues she shared. "My son is overwhelmed by it all too," she said. She realized she needed to listen to him and address his overwhelm just like I was listening to her. Listening loosens anxieties grip.
3. Feel your body
Often, I have tight and tense muscles without even realizing it. Throughout the day, I train my brain to think, am I getting tense? If so, breathe.
Shake out your hands when they ball up in a fist.
Where are your shoulders? Stooped or rolled back? How's your posture?
Take a body break. Check in with your body. Breathe. Relax.
Be mindful and in tune. Stretch and stress melts away in minutes.
These are just three quick ways to be mindful and feed your calm instead of the rush. Rushed lives wreck health. (I know.)
Stay calm and healthy in your daily routine with a minute of mindfulness throughout the day. You'll be happier and healthier.
You may like this popular post: 5 Ways to Detox Your Mind
I care about you.
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Do you get frustrated with challenging students? I get it. Go from frustrated to happy and peaceful.
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