That’s right, I am going to call you out on being your own worst enemy and biggest reason why you struggle.
Just remember, I am calling you out from a place of love (and from experience ;)).
I know you have heard it a thousand times but let this be your one thousandth and one time.
YOU CANNOT FUNCTION WELL WHEN YOUR BASIC NEEDS ARE NOT BEING MET.
Here is the thing, we can be a mental health guru but if we are not doing these three things, our mental health tools will not work as well.
Just like having a blender is great but if you don’t have power to get the blender going, it is kind of useless.
Similarly, if your car doesn’t have a battery, even if everything else is good, your car will not work without the battery.
So, let’s talk about the first one.
Adequate sleep is crucial for mental health. I am not talking about 8 crappy hours of sleep or 5 good hours, I am talking about quality sleep for a solid 7-9 hours.
If you struggle with sleep, I highly recommend starting a bedtime routine. It will help your body settle and know when it is time to sleep. You may want to listen to a nighttime meditation, do a short nighttime yoga stretch routine or maybe just relax in bed. You may want to try a chamomile tea or warm milk. Find what works to you and practice it DAILY.
I am no nutritionist but I do know that how we fuel our body has a huge impact on our mindset. If we eat like crap, we feel like crap. If we do not provide our body with the essentials to function well, it will not function well.
Now, please do not confuse eating well with dieting. Dieting involves rigidity and restriction. Eating well comes from a place of abundance and love for ourselves that we want to fuel it well so that it feels well. It comes from a place of enjoying yummy food that also has health benefits.
Lastly, if we are moving our bodies, every part of us feels better. Movement does not necessarily mean exercise, though it can. It can also mean stretching, walking, gardening or really anything where your body is moving with intention and purpose. There are some who intense physical activity may be most appropriate, for others that would stress their bodies too much and they need something less intense. Notice what is going on in your body and which type of movement feels best for you (and it may change over time).
I know these are basics and that we have talked about them before but I think this week we all needed this reminder, myself included.
If you need help with your mental health, don’t forget I am here to support you. I have two courses to help you on your healing journey. You can check them out here.
You are worth it!
In honor of Mother’s Day, I thought I would dedicate this blog post to all the mamas, grandmas, aunties and other women who play a crucial role in children’s lives.
Moms really do set the tone of the house, the family and the environment. The saying “when mama ain’t happy, no one is happy” is true in many households.
I know that when I am stressed, overwhelmed and on edge, it has a ripple effect on everyone else in the house (including the dogs ;)).
In fact, I recently had this happened. I had just gotten home after being in the hospital with one of my boys for a few days, with no answers as to what was going on with his health issues and more questions and fears than ever.
I stepped into the kitchen and my house was a wreck. That was the breaking point for me. All of the stress, anxiety, fear and chaos from the last few days caught up to me and it leaked out everywhere.
Within minutes of being home, one of my other sons was acting out, one was crying and the other one was yelling for attention. I went into my office and cried. How was I going to be able to handle it all? I didn’t feel like I had anything left in me.
I finally regained my composure after chugging a Diet Coke (my dysfunctional comfort of choice) and taking a minute. I knew that my kids were feeding off of my energy and if I wanted any resemblance of peace and sanity in my home, it was up to me to make the shift.
So, I decided to say “screw it”. The house was going to stay a mess and instead, I was going to spend some intentional time with my two boys that I had been away from for the last few days and fill their cup and would worry about the rest later. I knew I couldn’t do it all at that moment and so I had to choose what was most important to me. And while the dishes in the sink and the piles of laundry on the floor needed to be tended to, my kids needed me more.
My attitude was going to set the tone for everyone in the house and I had to choose what was most important.
I love what Christy Wright says. She says “what is right, right now?”. Something may be the right thing to do but if the timing is not right, it is not the right thing to do. In life, in our homes, in our parenting, it is our job to evaluate our priorities and remember the most important role in our life, the role of motherhood.
So today as you go through your day, keep that in your mind. Remind yourself of your priorities in this season and the timing of your choices.
It won’t be like this forever.
If you are the grandma or the friend, the auntie or the cousin, you also play an important role. You get to support the mamas in your life in their role, be the confidant, the second pair of hands and the sanity saver. Raising children requires a village and you play a crucial role in that village. Don’t minimize your importance because you do matter.
If you are a mama, auntie, friend etc. and you want a way to nurture yourself and embrace your role more but are struggling with anxiety or boundaries, I have just the courses for you!
You can check out the boundaries course here or the anxiety course here.
You are worth it!
Jocelyn is a Licensed Professional Counselor and course creator who desires to help clients heal and grow into who God created them to be.