I’m going to guess that no matter what time of day it is, if you sit with yourself for just a few moments, you’ll realize your mind’s been racing all day. You have a hundred things on your plate and a hundred more on the back-burner.
We are all guilty of running a marathon at a sprinter’s pace. How and why and what to do about it are all topics for lengthy articles at another time. Right now, let’s focus on what keeps us going.
This list is both super simple and super-overlooked. But they are things that really can (1) bring moments of joy to your day; (2) provide enough mental respite to get you through another hour; and (3) deserve sincere appreciation.
It’s the little things that really do give you booster power for your day. <Tweet this>
COFFEE. With your next cup of coffee, take a minute and savor it. Place your face right over it and breathe in the steamy goodness. Inhale deeply and begin to feel your brain begin to relax. Do it again and feel the muscles start to loosen down your neck and into your back. Enjoy this moment. Think of nothing but how this glorious beverage can nearly work miracles on a tired body.
Now out of your reverie, I’ll say this can work with any cup, from your favorite café to a cup from your kitchen. I’m not a coffee snob. I just really enjoy a strong cup (or 4!) in the mornings. And with desserts. And in my Shakeology. The warmth and smell both awaken and relax me. It serves me best when I have a few moments to linger with it and my thoughts, in the quiet, before everyone else is up.
My grandma summed it up during a recent conversation. She was recalling how she used to relish her cup in the early mornings before the work of the day. And then she’d hear the pitter patter of one of her children, and think, if only I had five more minutes! Oh, how I know the feeling!
And apparently I’m adding years to my life as well! (So says Harvard!)
HOT WATER. One of the things I’m most grateful for. And I do give thanks for it every day because there is little to be more thankful for. It works wonders on eliminating stress.
On your next break, go to the bathroom and stretch your hands under the hottest water you can stand. Enjoy a brief meditation while the heat unravels those tight joints. When there’s more time, go soak your worries away and unwind your tired muscles in a hot bath, or take a hot shower. Let your body unclench and release from too much technology, thinking, and planning. It feels A-MAZ-ING.
FRESHLY CLEANED, WARM FROM THE DRYER SHEETS. And they are totally wrinkle-free, tightly tucked, and smell delicious. (Side note – same Gramma from above used to iron her sheets. After doing all that work, it’s no wonder she relished her coffee!)
I mean, crawling into bed like this is truly a slice of heaven for me. I stretch out completely, do some yoga breathing, and the cares of the world float away. Man, I love that! If I was Lady Mary at Downton, no doubt Anna would have to do this daily.
And I probably love it so much more because my husband hates it, thus I rarely get to enjoy it. He could sleep straight on a mattress with sheets and a blanket balled up on him. The stuff of my nightmares! Yes, tucked sheets – that’s our issue! : )
NIGHT CREAM. Soft, silky, luxurious night cream. My all-time favorite is Bobbi Brown Hydrating Intense Night Cream. I’ve been using this for years and I love the stuff. It’s what I imagine Greek goddesses would bathe in. I would bathe in it if I could. I’m pretty sure I can see a difference in my skin when I use it. But the experience of layering it on my face and neck is really what sells me. I can tell I’m doing something glorious for my skin and I go to bed wishing I was sleeping on silk! (Beds and sheets again! Starting to see a pattern?)
HUGS. The ones from my kids, my husband, and my mom are the best – irreplaceable. Did you know it takes 20 seconds of human contact before your body relaxes? Try it least twice a day. Do it with your kids, especially when they are having a hard time. Do it with your partner, as much as possible.
That one-on-one contact can make a huge difference. When I’m so full of anxiety every muscle is hurting, a great bear hug starts working from my head and moves down to my toes. I feel like ice melting under a warm sun.
So those are my basic tools for making it through every day. They don’t require an hour long yoga session or a vaca to a faraway land. All you need is what you have right in front of you (except you may have to go find your favorite night cream!) and the ability to give thanks for these blessings in your life.
Which ones will you try right now? Did it help your sanity? What basic blessings keep you going throughout the day? Let me know. I’d love to try them.