Sometimes it's inevitable that we go through periods of feeling blah, icky, or even straight up hysterical.
This past week I found myself balling in the car while my child played in her carseat behind me. Everything was just feeling so overwhelming. I had tears and emotion welling up that I couldn't even begin to suppress. Honestly, it felt good to let it all out.
But I also knew I was way more weepy than my norm, and something needed to shift.
I was ready to feel happy again.
The following is what I've come back to over & over again to find a solid, content, and yes even delightfully happy, inner & outer self.
I started many of these yesterday & have to say, I'm already feeling pretty damn good. There's something so beautiful & empowering about being and accepting the support we all deserve to receive.
Start with the source.
Recognize what you've been going through lately.
Feeling emotional? Not sure why?
What's changed in your life lately? Any big, new or scary things? These can even be mindset shifts.
This can also be as natural as the changing of seasons. I've seen a lot of people say the change into fall has been tough for them. We're shedding the old and really gathering our resources for the winter, it's a lot to do!
Lately (in the past 6 weeks), I've: gotten married(!), decided to be a doula and assisted my first birth, am hosting a workshop and launching an on-line program, had a falling out with a best friend, went on a job interview, am preparing to leave my child more (getting ready to put her in daycare a couple days a week), am up-leveling my business and money mindset, and oh yeah, dropping off of breastfeeding and having a whole raaaange of hormonal fluctuations.
NO WONDER I have been feeling emotional.
Don't underestimate things. I had to find someone who will validate these life changes for me. This is so, so important! It can be really hard to recognize this for ourselves and to feel justified in how hard things feel, without feeling like we're complaining or weak.
Find someone who is going to say, 'hey girlfriend, you've been through some major sh*t lately, be gentle and easy on yourself and and give yourself permission to ressssst!'
Space just for you! As a mom, for me sometimes this means practically forcing myself to leave my daughter more. I mean, some days it's easy and I'm like 'see ya'! But when it comes to doing it on a consistent basis, I think I'm a bit scared of that. My gut tells me it's time, but my heart feels a little torn by it.
This could also be as simple as going to yoga class. Let the square footage of your yoga mat be your sanctuary. If you're a mom or in relationship, maybe stay at a friend's house for the night.
Buy a hot tub.
Go for a walk.
You get the idea.
Turn to Ayurveda
Ayurveda is the sister science to yoga, explaining the body and the ways it works.
In my eyes, it outlines what to come back to when we are feeling out of balance. Follow some of their simple suggestions. Structure in your eating and sleeping times.
Do some research, find out your dosha (sort of like a body type).
Drink warm lemon water first thing in the morning. Lemon is the most basic thing we can put in out body (it seems acidic but isn't once it enters our body). Warm food or drink is way easier for our body to digest and preps our systems for the day (especially in colder months).
Try dry brushing your body with a dry brush before you shower - garshana. This stimulates the lymphs, enhances blood flow, and detoxifies our largest organ, the skin.
Massage yourself with warm oil after your shower - also known as abhyanga. Use this time to cherish and honor every delicious piece of yourself. Say loving things to your body as you do this. Feel like a goddess.
Play around with what Ayurvedic principles bring you back to balance and make that ritual an anchor to your well being.
Put on good music
Sad or happy, you decide. Cry it out. Dance it out. Lay in bed and wallow. Take a moment to listen to the lyrics and relate. Or just close your eyes and move! My favorites are Adele for hurt or sorrow, and for fun, Fat Freddy's Drop station on Pandora.
Do yoga! Go for a run. Try pilates. Get your heart rate up. Dance around like a wild woman! I think we're all familiar with how much those healthy endorphins help our mood.
Yoga is a particular favorite of mine (duh) because we focus on the breath. Which is the best way to heal and release that I know of. The expansiveness of the poses mixed with the breath also allows us to stretch it out, release the kinks, acknowledge the icky parts, and let it all go.
We can then tap into the places within ourselves that we love. Our practice is such a wonderful chance to bring us back to peace and love.
Find a counselor.
This doesn't have to be a licensed professional (but if there's an inkling of you that things you need one, make that sh*t happen!). This could be a best friend who is really, really good at listening.
Someone who has been through what you're going through that you admire. A life coach! An energy healer. I was really struggling earlier in the week and I opened my phone to see a mom's group meeting the next morning. For support. To help with mental and emotional health.
I knew I needed to go. Yet I stillll resisted! I'm starting to understand how scary it is thinking people need to 'handle' you or feel sorry for you or that you are crazy.
But for me, going to that support group FREED EVERYTHING UP. It was exactly the perspective I needed, the validation I needed, and also the straight up understanding of what my body has been going through (the hormonal fluctuation of weaning from breastfeeding).
I came away still a little sad, but with the tools and perspective I needed to feel refreshed and like there is a way out, instead of further down the spiral.
Consider taking Rhodiola.
THIS IS MY FAVORITE FEEL GOOD HERB! I apprenticed as an herbalist for about 2 years and of everything I learned, finding out about rhodiola is my favorite. It is such a super herb.
First of all, it is an adaptogen, which simply means it helps your body adapt to stresses better (yes, please!). It helps regulate hormones. It enhances vitality and energy, mental clarity.
And my favorite aspect - it was one of the best herbs I have ever come across to help with anxiety and depression.
It is very mild, so it's safe for almost everyone. And it works! I've taken it in the past when I was feeling low (in tea, tincture or capsule form), and it improves my overall balance and happiness so much.
I went out and bought some tincture yesterday and look forward to more rhodiola goodness in my life.
That being said, I am not your healthcare provider. Please inquire with them before taking something new, especially if on other meds or pregnant/nursing.
So, remember you are never alone! You are not crazy! There is often a completely legitimate reason for feeling the way you do. And there are lots of ways to support yourself from within and from others. Start somewhere that feels good to you and build up from there.
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Thank you for the support!