Taking Time for Time Out
I want to spend time discussing an important aspect of your health and wellbeing – taking time out.
Yes – Life is hectic. Work is intense, your boss is problematic, you work long hours and struggle to get to the supermarket to pick up groceries so you can cook yourself dinner.
Your weekends are taken up with kid’s birthday parties, friend’s parties, late nights or morning starts that aren’t late enough.
And suddenly it’s Sunday night and you are wondering “how the hell did that happen and boy, I have to do that all again?”.
When the pace of life is full on, how do you even find the time to take time out? And what does “taking time out” actually mean?
Sure, booking a holiday to a remote tropical island sounds amazing and sometimes just what the doctor ordered, but let’s be realistic, many of us aren’t able to do that.
The work I do with my clients nearly always includes discussions about self-care and working on strategies to implement them. The majority of my clients get a bottle of herbs, which are wonderful for supporting energy production, adrenal health, immune health and managing stress.
Getting feedback such as “I can feel those herbal cuddles you put in that tonic”, or “The calming herbs are amazing! Give me more” or “That tonic is working a treat, I’m feeling stronger and more resilient.” are pretty common. Go herbs!
Finding the focus and having the energy or calmness to allow self-care is important. Finding ways to manage your stress is the first step in “taking time out”, or at least in recognising how much you need it.
Another non-negotiable of mine to help people “take time out” is prioritising a wholefood diet.
With home delivery food availability being on the rise (and the quality of these foods decreasing), it is becoming too easy to just jump on your phone and have that food at the door by the time you are home from work.
We’ve all been that person, too tired to cook, too hungry to think and nothing in the fridge. I promise you – we’ve all been there. Us humans like to find the path of least resistance. However, I promise that if you prepare just a little bit in advance and have a happy home-cooked meal instead of a fast food one, you’ll feel the difference.
There are plenty of ways you can make life easy in the kitchen – doing some meal prep, storing leftovers, having a well-stocked pantry & ordering a vegetable box, and opting for quick mid-week meals – steamed veg and some quick protein takes less time than waiting for the delivery guy. For inspiration, I send people to Caroline’s cooking classes or here, or to my all time fav vegetarian home cook hero here.
Another way to take time out daily is to develop a mindfulness practice.
Being mindful isn’t about levitating to another dimension.It is just being present.
Being mindful is all the rage these days. It sounds a bit faddy. But I promise once you start you will see the difference. I always recommend Tienne’s wonderful 8-week Mindfulness Stress Reduction Course here in Marrickville (enrollment for August’s course is open now).
I’ve done it, and so have many of my clients and it is awesome. You’ll learn so much about yourself and develop an immense appreciation for a quiet mind. We all need that.
If an 8-week commitment is too much, then start with 10 minutes a day using apps like Headspace or Smiling Mind. These really do work – I’ve seen incredible changes in people’s mood and focus just by doing these meditations.
If 10 minutes a day is too much – start by just being really present when you do simple tasks like eating, brushing your teeth or listening to your family.
Time out from busy life can also include movement.
A dance class (I love NLNL in Newtown), or doing a yoga class (here or here are awesome), or going for a bush walk (or even a city walk), starting some outdoor PT classes, or joining a gym. Even opting for a bike ride to work instead of public transport pain can be an option.
You don’t need to be a yogi or a gym junkie, or a serious rambler – just find something you enjoy, that involves moving your booty and do it.
If you can prioritise, at least once a week doing something to move your body, you’ll feel energised and have more energy. That hour class once or twice a week may be all the “time out” you get – but it will be worth it.
For me, 2017 has been about spending time in nature.
As some of you may already know, my camping van and I have been hitting the bush, sitting in beautiful, remote – and sometimes very cold – places. It has been incredible for my mood, energy and overall get up and go. Studies show that sleeping outside will reset your sleep and body clock. I can vouch for that.
Going camping has sadly meant I’ve needed to take some Saturdays off from clinic – my busiest and favourite day. However, making this a priority for my partner and I has been amazing. Spending 2 nights around a campfire has been my time out.
Booking in a massage with the BodyHarmonie crew when I get back from the bush is also important in taking time out – just to help ease those camping aches and pains… hehe.
Get in touch if you have questions or want to know more about any of my suggestions or book an appointment so we can start working on those strategies for your own time out – together.
Your future self will thank you.
P.S. All the people and places I’ve recommended in this newsletter are purely suggestions as I love their work – I’m not an affiliate or get kick backs from any of them. I just like to pass good things on – all in the spirit of sharing the love.
P.P.S This is my van parked up beside the Turon River with not another soul around. Heaven.