Society is experiencing some major shifts right now. Some are wonderful, MUCH needed and welcomed with open arms. Personally, I cherished all the transformational and eye opening education and awareness that the Black Lives Matter movement brought to me last week.
However, month 4 of COVID news, businesses being boarded up, our friends going out of business due to months of being told they cannot operate and, the looming possibility of “mandatory va((ines” plus the incessant feeling of “what next,” has me buzzing with the low hum of anxiety.
Over the past few months I’ve had to get serious about setting up daily rituals to help manage this for myself. After all, no one is coming to save me and my health right now EXCEPT ME.
If you’re feeling like you might be in the same boat, I wrote this blog post just for you.
Taking care of mental wellbeing is a critical element of physical health. Weather you’re focused on balancing hormones, optimizing fertility, boosting metabolism, improving digestion, immunity, it’s allllll inextricably linked to mental health.
1- Morning Meditation
Evan gets up at 5:00am every morning and jumps down onto our BEMER mat. From there he gets up and immediately gets into a 25 minute breathing meditation.
Me, I’m muuuuch slower in the morning. If I’m up by 6:30am, it’s a miracle. Usually, I roll out of bed around 7am, roll Peppermint essential oil on my temples, grab a big glass of water and then mosey my way over to the meditation mat. I’ll usually do 15 minutes of meditation, not 25. Sometimes it’s only 11 minutes.
I mostly check in with my body, focus on my breathe and try my best to keep an empty mind. After the timer goes off, I thank God for the blessing of another morning and set an intention for the day.
It’s amazing, like magical, just how effective sitting upright and breathing for 11-25 minutes can be. I notice that I’m happier, more patient, more grounded and overall more clear throughout the entire day when I begin with this meditation practice.
2- Get Outside
I truly adore the feeling of dirt on my bare feet. It’s HOT here in Palm Spring, CA. It gets up 118 F in the summer. Yes, I said that right. But it cools off in the evenings and remains lovely and crisp into the early morning hours.
I usually take my morning coffee outside these days, enabling myself and my kitties to get our paws into the dirt for a solid 30-60 minutes each day. While the cats roll around in the dirt, I like to slowly sip my coffee, get some yoga stretches in and the most brief and simple “workout” that can barely even qualify as an actual workout 😏, but nonetheless, wakes up my body and gets my blood moving.
This is my mini workout session if you’re interested:
-21 tricep pushups or dips
(60 second rest)
-13 tricep pushups or dips
(60 second rest)
-9 tricep pushups or dips
No weights. The End.
3- Workout for real
As stress builds up, so too does cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone that can wreak havoc on our hormones, blood sugar, metabolism, thyroid health, sleep and mental clarity.
But did you know that simply walking 30 minutes can burn excess circulating cortisol? Yep.
It’s like hitting the Reset button.
With the summer heating up the desert, I have to hit the pavement early morning. For days when that doesn’t happen, I jump on my Pelaton bike or do a 30 minutes yoga flow session. Sometimes I’ll just do a YouTube workout video or grab my Pelaton app for a guided 30 minutes workout. All of these activities help me SWEAT and burn excess cortisol.
I always feel 100% better after working out.
4- Turn Off the News and Social Channels
I don’t mean put your head in the sand. I’ve done this before and at this particular time, I think staying informed and researching beyond mainstream media is very important. It’s good to take a few minutes or an hour to browse the news, your favorite newspaper or political columns or check in with your favorite journalists on social media to get your updates.
However try not to stay glued to the media! It can be emotionally draining. I have made the grave error of many many nights of checking in on updates before bed. This is the biggest mistake. I find myself in tears or too nervous to fall asleep after that.
Create healthy boundaries for yourself and the news. Establish a healthy relationship with the news and how you take in its information, distill it down in your mind, ask yourself what’s truth by checking in with your gut, and then asking what do you need to do to take care of you.
This daily ritual is so important for us as individuals at this time.
Once you finish your browsing for the day, you can use Petitgrain and Tea Tree (AKA: Melaleuca) to help clear your energy and “unhook” from news.
Unhook + Reset
1 drop Petitgrain
1 drop Tea Tree
Directions: take 1 drop each and rub around belly button, solar plexus and on inside of wrists and elbows.
Take a big inhale of what’s left in the palm of your hands and state a fresh intention as you move forward in your day.
5- Wear Calming Oils
Aromatherapy is an incredibly powerful tool for our minds. These are some of my “go-to” doTERRA products for keeping me calm throughout the day.
Magnolia + Jasmine: Magnolia has 2x the amount of linalool compared to Lavender. Linalool helps to calm the nervous system and release feelings of stress. Every time I roll Magnolia onto my wrists and onto my collarbones, I find myself taking a deep relaxing breathe in.
Magnolia pairs really beautifully with Jasmine. The combo makes a lovely pure-fume to wear.
I roll this onto my body after I’ve taken a shower and gotten ready for the day.
Douglas Fir + Citrus Bliss
Douglas Fir is incredibly grounding, so it helps to calm the overactive mind. Citrus Bliss smells like an orange creamsicle, it’s aroma is sweet, uplifting and refreshing. I have these two oils at my desk right now! They are also wonderful in a diffuser.
The Big Guns: Copaiba softgel + Adaptiv capsule
If I get majorly triggered with a wave of anxiousness during the day, I’ll reach for either 1 Copaiba softgel or 1 Adaptiv capsule.
At night time, if I’m struggling to get to sleep, I’ll do 1 each. This duo has been an absolute lifesaver in terms of sleep!
6- More Play!
As adults, this one can be tough. We are always thinking about what else we “should” be doing. More play can mean turning on your favorite old school jams for a private dance party with yourself while you cook. Maybe it’s taking the time to whip up your favorite DIY face mask, painting for fun or even calling up your friend for a little gab session while you walk.
Laughter, fun and finding windows for play is an important part of BEING HUMAN! This ritual of fun can help us to release the feel good neurotransmitters that give our nervous system the reset it really needs and craves.