The Half Term Burn Out And 5 Things You Can Do About It.
Here in Perthshire, in Scotland, October brings the Tattie Holidays where children, traditionally, were chucked out into the fields for a wholesome day of work that in turn swelled their and the household coffers. Sadly not so today. Parents, not just in my nook of Perthshire but all over the country have been engaged in the childcare/work dance for most of October and frankly we’re exhausted!
I’ve traipsed my children south of the border for some much needed Granny time and over to the West coast of Scotland to catch up with friends to combine forces over numerous pots of coffee to fuel us for the constant entertainment we insist on feeding our children (more about the need for boredom in another post I think!). It is all well and good #makingmemories and being #soblessed, particularly in the sun streaked autumn hues we encountered, but the mental load this involves takes its toll. It’s taken this mummy a week to recover and get back to work properly.
This morning I was delighted to find that the internet was not playing ball and those pesky electromagnetic waves couldn’t reach me. I could simply sit quietly and write. No notifications pinging, no catching up on podcasts, no BBC news alerts - just stillness with the sun dappling through the crisp, turning leaves and, rather quaintly, the cattle being moved along the road outside The Mill House.
Even this mini digital detox feels like a step in the right direction. Dr Chatterjee, of TV, book and Podcast fame has compiled a very easy one task a day to fulfil a 7 day digital detox. So simple, surely we can all take something away from it.
We don’t even notice the constant bombardment from external noise vibrations anymore; cars leaping into life, radio murmuring in the background, people talking on their phones, the traffic light beeping to guide safe passage, a reminder pinging on our phone. This constant hum is causing our bodies to be in a constant state of high alert. Our fight or flight hormone, cortisol is ripping through our bodies like never before and if we don’t learn to quell it dis-ease in the body is not going to be far away.
So if Dr Chatterjee can give us a simple week of tasks to ease some of our stress let’s see what I can do.
Remember it is Vata season!
Take a look at this blog and consider a detox. This is the time of the year for slowing down, reviewing what you have achieved this year and hunkering down for winter. Just as the trees and plants have now stored the best of the sun’s energy so have we, so don’t go expending it all before we’ve even been immersed in the depths of winter.
2) Turn off the radio/tv/podcast/itunes and BREATHE
Silence. Find a quiet spot (even if it’s the loo at work!) and breathe. The best technique I have found is the 4-7-8. It gives your tissues and organs some much needed oxygen, since we are all guilty of shallow breathing, and rapidly relaxes and calms frazzled nerves.
How to do it:
Sit or lie comfortably and exhale slowly through your mouth until you’ve emptied your lungs
Inhale for 4 through your nose
Hold for 7
Exhale for 8 through your mouth
Start by doing this 4 times and then build up to 8 times
3) Just 10 minutes earlier
If there is anyway you can get up just 10 minutes earlier to do some yoga or pilates stretches you will be winning all day. I promise! With a teething baby and the clock changing I’ve felt this challenge keenly but it’s so worth it. The process of waking up the body through stretching and breathing through those stretches gives your body and mind a fighting chance of keeping your cortisol levels in check and your mind focused on the priorities of the day.
4) The rule of 3
And talking of daily priorities, and as a serial list maker who is constantly disheartened by the length of my lists, I’ve found it extremely helpful to identify 3 priorities each day. Get them done and if anything else gets ticked off in the process you are over achieving! A few years ago I got into a great habit of filling this WEEKLY PLANNER in every Sunday night then each weekly night reflecting and doing my list for the following day. Try it for yourself, it’s quite liberating and I’ll be taking it up again too.
5) Keep your Chakras balanced
Obviously. I can’t not say this enough! If you are making sure that your core energy is flowing as it should be then it sets the foundations for the rest of your health - mind, body and spirit. I am running reiki sessions on Tuesdays and Wednesday at The Mill House, Monzie at the moment so please take a moment to explore >>>