Hi...I'm Renee!

I'm a busy mom who uses mindless-creativity to easily calm my mind, ignite my joy + savor life. Learn more here.

{How To Thursday} Slow Down?

{How To Thursday} Slow Down?

Since my Slow Down Mama! series, I've meaning to get more s-l-o-w d-o-w-n activities and articles up on the blog. I definitely have many ideas and posts to come!  For now, I thought I'd post an article I wrote for Naturally Savvy (fined tuned a bit) in early 2009 and check-in with you and see how your slow down activities are coming along since I last posted on this.

This month began the transition into the fall season.  The sun is shining, but it's setting earlier and earlier these days. The temperature may be falling where you live, and the birds may be heading south for the winter, but that doesn't mean people aren't still out enjoying what this time of year has to offer.

Even though it's getting dark earlier, and you're doing many fall activities around your area, do you still feel like you can't conquer your to-do list? Do you still feel exhausted because you're running here and there and rushing through your day?  I know I do!

Redefine Success:

Somehow, somewhere, someone came up with the idea that being "busy" means that we're "successful." Many of us spend our days doing one thing after another six to seven days a week.  We have responsibilities, duties, and obligations that never seem to stop.  We've come to believe that our ultimate daily goal should be living in a state of constant go-go-go mentality, rarely taking time for ourselves.

The truth is: when we live in this state of mind, we're really causing our bodies and our minds a great deal of pain and disease.

Enjoying life on Earth should be our ultimate goal. If we want our lives to be balanced and healthy, we need to lessen our load and increase our down time while doing activities that fill us with joy.

Did you know that slowing down, taking a few deep breaths and participating in calming activities can help you lose weight? So why not add to your fall celebrations this month by doing some calming self-care that will nourish all areas of your body, mind and soul.

Affirmations:

First, start your day with a positive affirmation and visualize it. An affirmation is a positive phrase that can either be said out loud, silently, or can be drawn on a piece of paper (yes, you can draw stick figures.  I do!).  The intention is to keep this thought with you throughout the day and evening.  If you choose to say it, keep a notecard or a sticky note with your phrase and keep it close to you so you can keep checking in to make sure you're aligned with your positive pharse throughout the day.  The same thing goes with your drawing.  Keep it near so you can stay connected to your positive energy.

The great thing about this, instead of waking up and focusing on the stress of your day, you get to focus on how you'd like to feel and how you'd like your day to go.  Here's my own example: Sometimes it can be difficult for me to wake up to Camille's crying.  I usually like to wake up to soft soothing sounds, but those sounds are only heard if I chose to wake-up before her or she happens to wake up talking with her sweet baby girl talks.  Today I slept in and woke up when she did (to not so happy sounds).  So instead of getting bent out of shape and stressed by trying to get to her has fast as I could, I said, "I am calm and relaxed" quite a few times while getting up and knowing my first stop was to get to her.  I shifted from a rush state and I was calm and relaxed when I got her and changed her diaper (while she screamed).  :)

Get Outside:

Go outside and observe nature at least once a day. Go for a walk, sit on your deck, or go to the park. Instead of power walking or running, slow down and look around you. Observe the colors, sounds and quietness. Sit in silence and observe the birds as they fly by.  Listen to the wind blow through the trees and watch them sway.

When I was teaching elementary school, a student said to me, "Mrs. Yemma, why do all the teachers walk so fast?" I don't remember what I said back to him, but it was an eye-opener for me and something I needed to hear big time!  I then realized, why did I have to walk so fast?  Because really, I don't.  Whatever needs to get done, will get done!

Real Food:

Eat at least one seasonal, home-cooked meal at home every week. Eating on the road, at fast-food restaurants, or just cooking at home with the television blaring in the background (oh, and having kiddos, too!) causes us to eat more quickly. Instead, explore a farmer's market for fresh, locally grown ingredients. While cooking, turn off the television, and put on some music that makes you feel good.

When you sit down at your table, before you eat, take five calming deep breaths (something I've been struggling with since having Camille. Future post coming soon on this!). While you eat, focus on your five senses and chew your food many, many times.  This will prepare your body for your food, which will help ease your digestion and decrease cortisol levels (the stress hormone).

Reap the Benefits:

When you calm your mind, have positive feelings, and add calming activities into your daily life, you'll see results that you've never seen before.

Slowing down can help you:

  • have more energy
  • lose weight
  • smile and laugh more
  • be in harmony with what Earth has to offer

Most importantly, you'll enjoy your life. When you race around, you'll miss the little things that life has to offer. Once you slow down and relax, you'll have a better ability to manage daily stressors and an improved sense of well-being on our beautiful planet we call Earth.

Remember: it's pace, not race.

Is there anything else that you'd like to add to the list?  If so, let me know and I'll post it! :)

{life is stopping to smell the roses}

{Gratitude} 365 Photo Project Day 1: Fall Pumpkins

{Gratitude} 365 Photo Project Day 1: Fall Pumpkins

My Life On Water!

My Life On Water!