I’m writing this post for me as much as for you to be honest, as I need to remind myself what makes me happy and gets me ‘back on track’ when I feel bleugh. The list below helps me boost my mood and feel my happy self again.
I was chatting to my husband, Peter, last night about consistency, and the need to consistently look after myself more because as parents, we’re great at putting our kids first yet we rarely offer ourselves the same respect, consideration, or time, even when we have it i.e when the kids are at school or asleep.
We’re all trying to do so much simultaneously and are wellbeing is suffering for it. For example, I often find I’ve missed breakfast by the time the kids are ready on a morning, leaving lunch to around 3 o clock some days, as with today, leaving me lacking in energy and frankly, hangry af.
It’s time to reclaim a more structured life back, to putting myself first more often and consistently practising more of the things that make me feel sunny side yellow, rather than murky old blue.
You in too?
- Eat well. A no-brainer right and I do eat healthily for the most part but it’s the 10% of the time when I don’t that can spiral, until the percentages actually scare me-and no more so, than when I’m tired. It becomes a bit of a vicious cycle really as tired/low mood often means reaching for something sweet which leads to energy crashes and feeling worse than before. I literally forced myself earlier to make a salad bursting with organic veggies, cannelloni beans and tinned tuna steak, drizzled with olive oil, cyder vinegar, fresh lemon, sea salt and pepper. It was a total babe of a lunch. You are what you eat huh, and right now I feel far more energised and happy for scoffing a slow releasing, low GI, healthy, delicious dish than half an hour earlier.
- Exercise. I go through phases, when it comes to sport, either sticking to a routine religiously, sometimes running daily, or absolute nada. Why am I such a woman of extremes? The problem with not being consistent with exercise mean that when I do work out, recovery takes longer and the benefits are obviously, far less. I need to remind myself that even a fast walk daily is better than nothing. I love it when I get going, so why I don’t do it more frequently, makes no sense to me. Time to change!
- Take some time-out. I understand this isn’t possible for all, particularly those not self-employed as I am, but for those working flexibly or part-time, if you’re in control of your schedule, then make sure you’re ACTUALLY in control of your schedule. Overstretching yourself won’t garner the greatest of results and when you’re tired and/or lacking motivation as an artist, it will show in your work. Apologies in advance if this post is boring your face off as I’m in desperate need of a disco nap!
- Break your routine. Taking time-out isn’t the only way to switch things up. As a creative, I love to create in many ways from writing to filmmaking, painting, presenting and more. Moving between mediums and even genres, keeps you on your toes and each discipline feeds the other. So if you feel things are getting a little monotonous in one area of your work, explore and research ways that will challenge, stretch and excite you. Don’t limit yourself.
- SWITCH TECH OFF. I’m shouting at myself because I just don’t listen. Even my GP advised that I switch my laptop off at 9pm as I was suffering from restless sleep and nightmares yet most nights I’m awake at crazy o’clock catching up on telly I’ve missed online and/or reading the ENTIRE internet before I go to sleep. I often write my book late too but have changed to early mornings now as both mean I have a quiet house and time to process my thoughts and simply crack on. I committed to turning off tech early now (that blue light stimulates your brain), because a lack of sleep has a knock-on effect to everything in my life: family, work and mental wellbeing so wish me luck and if you see me online at midnight, please shout at me to switch off, won’t you?
P.S If you’re feeling down and need support, speak to close friends and your GP. Know that you’re not alone.
I’d love to read about ways which help you perk up!