Does this sound like you?
Every single day.
You're feeling overworked. Busy.
Running out the door. Looking for your phone/keys. Leave your lunch on the kitchen counter.
Work all day.
Trudge home in traffic.
Grab a glass of wine. Make dinner.
Cuddle on the couch. Netflix.
Go to bed and do it all over again.
My day looked like that for years.
And I will never forget what my mom said to me a few years back...
She said: "You have to slow down or you're going to burn out."
And she was right.
And of course, like the stubborn gal I am, I didn't listen.
And I burnt the fuck out.
This isn't something I've had the courage to share until now (and to be honest, I'm not quite sure where I'm finding the courage to do it now, but it's happening and girl, I'm gonna go with it...)
Such a little word but such an overwhelming feeling, am I right? And for some reason, people just DON'T talk about it. If I were to sit down and ask you right now if there's anything that's stressing you out in your life, chances are your answer would be a resounding YES.
And if not, holy shit girl congratulations for being an amazing amoeba -- this blog post probably isn't for you (although feel free to hang around, you're still awesome in my books).
So why why why do we just not talk about it?
We've been taught to hide our stress. Keep our anxieties at bay. Put on a mask and "just deal with it". And while I'm all about keeping positive, I am also about being REAL and honest, and that includes the shitty days -- because YUP, you guessed it, stress is something I deal with all the fucking time.
For YEARS I felt paralyzed by stress. I mean, I would get stressed out at the tiniest things -- if a dish was left in the sink for longer than an hour, if there was any form of traffic when I was driving, if situations didn't happen EXACTLY how my mind imagined that they would.
I once removed myself from my own 14th birthday party because my friends didn't wanna watch Bring It On 2...(when my best gals remind me of this, I can't help but laugh now but at the time, I was PISSED.) And let's just say, that added stress that I kept imposing into my life...well, it kept up for a LONG while.
I was a bundle of stress and it was affecting so many areas in my life.
My control freak tendencies got the best of me and for a while, I got so overcome by all of that stress that I started having panic attacks. I literally made myself sick because I couldn't give up my control over shit. I became the girl I always was so frustrated by -- the negative nancy who would spend her days complaining about the littlest things and putting more energy into the every day bullshit than the GOOD.
While my schedule may look a whole hell of a lot different than it did then, I still lead a busy life. And what I've learned along the way is the importance to find ways to slow down and find some grounding amidst the busy.
Because let's be honest, you were not put on this Earth to spend your lifetime running around like a chicken with your head cut off and feeling endlessly anxious and overwhelmed.
MY TOP 3 TOOLS FOR DEALING WITH STRESS:
1. THE BRAINDUMP
This is a journaling technique that I adopted when I read the book The Artists Way and while I don't implement it every day anymore like I used to, on days when I'm feeling particularly anxious, it's a lifesaver.
The idea? As soon as you wake up in the morning, before you do ANYTHING, grab a journal and a pen and just write down anything and everything that's in your head. Don't edit. Just WRITE.
Light a candle, curl up in a blanket and treat this as your ME time.
Morning times doesn't resonate with you? Do this before bed to get rid of all of the BS chatter making it tough to fall asleep.
Honest? I was super turned off by meditation for years. I always felt like I wasn't doing it right and that I just couldn't sit still and quiet my mind the way I was "supposed to".
But once I shifted my perspective on it and gave it a chance, it did WONDERS for my mental health.
My best tip is to treat it as a PRACTICE. You're not going to be able to quiet the chatter but can you breathe through it? You are intentionally creating space for YOU and that is SO powerful! Celebrate that.
I recommend starting off with a guided meditation -- my personal favorite is a free app called CALM. Try out their 7 days of calm to get started and see how you feel!
3. THROW YOURSELF A DANCE PARTY
You know I had to add something goofy in -- I can't help it!
But for real, when you're feeling suuuper stressed out and funky and in your head, the best thing you can do is to MOVE YOUR BODY.
You know I'm all for a good sweat session, but if you can't muster up the time or courage to push play for 30 minutes and sweat it out, throw on some of your favorite tunes (my personal go tos are 90s boybands and disney belt fests) and DANCE YOUR HEART OUT.
And there you have it.
What's your favorite of the 3 tips? Share in the comments!