These are my top 5 ways to boost your mood and energy levels if you are a busy Mom like me.
As the end of the year approaches, (Not fast enough in my opinion because I need a holiday) most of us mothers are suffering with low energy, no or little motivation and of course frustration as things pile up, and we have more and more to do and get done before the holidays. I thought I would take the time to write down a few tips that I try and follow which really help me to keep things going and get to the end of the year in one piece.
Alright, i’m going to admit that not all of these may actually do anything to make the December holiday’s come around any faster, neither may they actually give you any extra energy, but my hope is that you will at least try.
Some of these tips may seem incredibly elementary to you, but up until recently I was ignoring or even a victim to some of them and after a little recent health scare I got a swift kick up the butt, and realized that I needed to make a change. You may even want me to explain to you that if this is for busy moms then how on earth do I think YOU are going to find the time to fit them in? Well none of them are too time consuming actually, you just really need to look at where your priorities are and then make them happen. Adrenal Fatigue and Auto Immune health issues as a result of stress and bad lifestyle are real but thankfully there are a few easy things that we can do to try and prevent ever getting to that stage.
Right, back to those tips.
Tip # 1 – GET WALKING
I am not big on strenuous exercise, but the boost you get from simply going into the outdoors and walking for a bit is undeniable. You don’t need to go running for km’s or spend hours in the gym. All you need are some nice comfy shoes, perhaps the dog and any kid that want to tag along, and take a short brisk walk around the block or to the park a few times a week. I’m telling you, those Endorphins will do you the world of good!
I have recently started doing this again and aim to go out after work at least 3 out of 5 days, but try for more. And now is the best time to start as we move into summer and the days are longer and warmer so just do it. It has made such a difference and it has actually benefited me in more ways than one because I actually sleep better when I have had a walk, which brings me to Tip #2.
Tip # 2 – GET ENOUGH SLEEP
Adequate sleep is essential for your body to function properly. Really, you should look it up. Try where possible to stick to actual bed times, yes for yourself, this is not just for your kids only. Now I do know with babies this is not all that easy and if someone had told me to “Get more sleep” when I was wrangling babies to bed I may have wanted to hit you, but I really recommend seeing how you can do this.
Sticking to a decent bed time and same waking time is actually so good for you. It really can help to keep your adrenals functioning optimally and you will feel far less exhausted. There really is never any good reason to burn the candle at both ends.
Now as a second part to this tip I want to suggest leaving all electronics out of the bedroom. These devices emit all sort of sleep depriving charges which are energy sapping and sleep disruptive. There is some good information on this article “Scary ways technology affect your sleep” Plus not having your Cellphone next to your bed means you may actually get to read that book you keep dusting off on your night stand instead of mindlessly scrolling through Facebook for hours. If an alarm clock is your worry then why don’t you invest in the old fashioned kind, trust me they still work just as well and are not a health hazzard like your mobile devices.
Tip # 3 – DITCH THE SUGAR AND CAFFEINE
Ok, this may sound completely counter intuitive but even-though these two can give you a sense of boosted energy, they are only temporary fixes and more often that not result in you just crashing and although it’s perfectly fine to have some of your favorite cup of Java or a sweet treat here and there, don’t rely on these two to keep you going.
Rather opt for healthier choices like some wonderful freshly squeezed juices or mood/energy boosting smoothies. Up your fiber intake and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. You will almost instantly feel a difference. I also find that a handful of Nuts and some raisins are another great way to curb the need to grab for the cake or a cup of Hot Chocolate.
Tip # 4- HAVE YOUR IRON AND VITAMIN D LEVELS CHECKED
I’m telling you, not sticking to tips 1-3 and all the stress that life throws our way is a sure fire way of sapping our bodies of the necessary nutrients it needs to function properly. I recently had quite a battery of blood tests done and among the results which weren’t great at all, my Iron and Vitamin D levels were almost critically low. Even if you are only slightly anemic this can leave you feeling low and exhausted. Foods like Nuts, seeds, leafy greens, whole grains and red meat are all great sources of iron.
I have had to supplement these now and after about a week I am actually starting to feel a slight difference. They say that it can take a few weeks to really start feeling a change. Just a heads up, you really need to actually ask for these tests to be done. Don’t just expect your GP to request them because they don’t. I have had bloods requested before but never these and this time when I did have them done my levels were extremely low and needed to be addressed ASAP. So if you are feeling really exhausted, no matter how long you sleep for then it may be worth having yours checked.
Although Vitamin D is available in some food sources, the best way to get yours in is a few minutes in the sun. I am also taking a VitD Supplement, which was prescribed by my doctor. On that note, you should never take one unless it is necessary. So always have the levels Tested first. Seeing as though I work in an office all day, I don’t really get to see an awful lot of sun. I am making it a point now to go out for at least 20 minutes each day. I am not going to go into the whole medical explanation of the importance of these but instead here is an interesting article on Iron & Vitamin D deficiency that you can read with some more information.
Tip # 5 – TAKE TIME TO DO SOMETHING MEANINGFUL FOR YOURSELF EVERYDAY.
Of all these tips, this is probably the one one you are say Oh FFS, where on earth must I find the time to do something “meaningful” for myself. I have so much else to do and people to care for! While I totally understand that, trust me, I have felt that way most of my parenting journey but it really is so important for your own sanity and well-being.
So find something, even if it is just one thing and make sure you fit it in somewhere during your day. If you aren’t living in the Western Cape, then take a nice warm bath each evening. Perhaps do a little Yoga in the morning or before you go to sleep at night. Read a book. Watch a movie after the kids have gone to bed with a nice warm cup of tea or maybe a good glass of Red Wine. Phone a friend and have a chat or better yet meet for a coffee or lunch. Go and have a Pedicure or massage (Ok that one can’t be everyday but you should do it sometime)
You may have seen me posting recently on Instagram that I am actually busy reading a lovely book by the author and blogger Jessica N. Turner called “The Fringe Hours” Jessica is also a blogger at The Mom Creative and is a very busy full time working mom of three just like me and this book has really given me some perspective about prioritising and finding those fringe hours to fit in some of these activities that make me happy. I can really recommend the read.
Get yourself a nice Natural Massage oil or something like this African Extracts Rooibos Tissue Oil which I am really enjoying, and get your better half to give you a nice relaxing shoulder massage or foot massage. Then rub some in your cuticles and go to sleep. I received a bottle of it to review recently and I absolutely love it. This Tissue Oil is not like some brands that are mainly mineral oil. Instead, pure natural sweet almond and grape seed oil carry high levels of Bio-Active Rooibos extract and Vitamin E. This multi-purpose oil protects, helps to regenerate, restore and rehydrate and can be used on the skin, nails and hair and totally has my thumbs up. It is also 100% Cruelty free. It is available for R62.99 (60ml) from leading retailers and pharmacies . www.africanextracts.com
Well that is about all I have left to say for now. This post got a little longer than I had anticipated, but I really felt like I should share these few things with you. Who knows perhaps you will try a few of them and see what kind of a difference they make for you.
I’d love to hear if you have or are trying any of these and what your experiences have been. Do you struggle with the end of the year slump like I do? What are you going to do to try make it out to the other end in once piece? Please let me know if the comments.
*P.S This is not a sponsored post. I am not affiliated to anybody or any product mentioned in this post. I did however receive a bottle of African Extracts Rooibos products to review and have let you have my thoughts on it.