The reality is, whether you are a full time mom, full time employee, or both, that most days will be loud, interrupted, and long. There is nothing wrong with that. It is all about how you posture your life in order to handle these days without becoming angry and stressed.
This post is not about how to make a good bubble bath or take a day off. I want to give some practical tips that you can do every day to make sure you are relaxed in the face of juice stains and blow outs. On my best days I can handle a colossal mess with a smile and a gentle voice (this doesn't happen everyday!), and here are the things that help.
I can't stress this enough. When my life and my day is organized, I am so much more peaceful. I don't keep a planner, but I have a calendar and my grocery list as well as reminders on my phone. I am in love with this grocery list from Brim Papery. When I throw away the milk, I just add it to the list that sticks to my fridge. It makes shopping trips so much easier when I know exactly what I need. Using this system, and a few more tricks, we spend $60/a week on all groceries for the 3 of us! I will be posting soon about how we make that happen. Saving money because you are organized- talk about a stress reliever.
I am a huge fan of essential oils. My husband says they come from witch doctor magic, but regardless, they work! I recently found this line of essential oil based goodies from Blümsi that are so wonderful. How do oils help keep your day peaceful and less stressed? Scent is so powerful in triggering certain moods. I carry the Invigorate Orange and Vanilla Room and Body Spray that you see with the orange label in my bag. Today in the office I was exhausted. I sprayed some of this near my face, breathed in, and got a second wind! Having a stressful shopping trip, whip out Invigorate. The Exhale blend would be perfect for this as well. I also diffuse oils through reeds or diffusers in the house to just keep things smelling nice. A nice smelling home is much easier to relax in. The protection blend is also great to rub on wrists or foreheads when cold season comes around. Healthy family=happy mom.
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p.s. if you are wondering why these pictures are a bit foggy, blame the 130% humidity we have been having! I couldn't keep my camera lens clear! I am so ready for the fall.
No matter how tired and worn out you are, a quick 20 minute workout will give you that extra boost of energy you need to make it through the day. What does energy have to do with being stress free? The more energized you are, the easier it is to hurdle surprises. Imagine the difference between exhausted and seeing all the muffins smashed into the floorboards and being energized while seeing the mess. Huge difference to the way you would react.
4 Make Sure You Can Sleep Comfortably
Start the day off exhausted and it is hard to get your feet under you. Whether you get 6 or 10 hours of sleep, make sure you sleep comfortably. We recently got newbamboo sheets, pillows, and pillowcases from Cariloha and it made sleeping fantastic! I promise these are the softest sheets I have ever slept in my entire life. And the pillows are amazing! I slept like a rock the first night we had them on the bed. If you are having issues with a good night sleep, consider splurging on some nice pillows and a soft bamboo sheet set to help you relax at night.
For me that is every other night for bedtime (we alternate bedtime) and when I go to the gym. I am even contemplating waking up before Oliver to have some more time alone. This is just so important to help mom feel rested. Whether you spend that time cleaning, making your shopping list, showering, or just reading on the couch, I recommend having some time where you are completely alone- no kids, no husband. Get something done that you can't do with the kids around, or just lay quietly.
Nothing makes me more stressed during the day then a dirty and disorganized house. However, I don't have time to do a big cleaning day or clean at night. I have a list that outlines 1 cleaning item that needs to be done each day, and then I clean as I do my activities throughout the day. For instance. Wednesday is my bathroom toilet cleaning day. I try to do this while Oliver takes a bath or brushes his teeth. On Monday I mop the kitchen floors. I can do this while Oliver eats breakfast in his high chair. I don't set aside a special cleaning time, I incorporate it into our day. I also pick up and clean as I walk. I am always picking up and straightening up so thinks never get too messy or cluttered.
When you are stressed, angry, and frustrated, you can't just stop to exercise, make a list of all the things you are annoyed at, or ditch the kids for alone time. When you are in that moment and about to explode, draw on scripture to help put your life into perspective. I have this candle by Good Word Candle Company on my dresser. "Be still and know that I am God". Another translation says "Cease Striving..." In other words, RELAX!! Having verses like this memorized or displayed around your home will help in those moments when all else has failed.
How do you handle days when you are stressed?
I want to know what I can add to my days to help me be calm and collected!