Why I decided to buy into the ‘Self Care’ hype and why it might just be the smartest strategy you could adopt this year to turbo charge your energy levels.
Jez it’s April and Easter is over, where has the year gone!
I’m shamelessly behind (I started writing this post in March…) on my commitment to send more regular inspiration, tools and insights from the coal face of the training and coaching room but I have a good excuse I promise!
The start of this year has been all about ‘Self Care’ v’s adding more things on my plate and it’s felt decidedly uncomfortable…
A personal health crisis, a series of BIG (40) birthday events, family visits and an unexpected house move saw my energy levels plummet. I found my usual strategy of ‘daily practices to manage my energy level’, left me maintaining an ever-decreasing pool of energy. You know it’s that feeling when you are just going through the motions and don’t stop to question. ‘Am I enjoying this’, ‘is it really cultivating that ‘zingy’ sense of energy I’m after?!’
So it was time to zag. Pull some different tools from the toolbox and radically shake up my thinking. I asked myself, ‘what does success really look, sound or feel like, when it comes to thriving health and maintaining my energy levels?”.
If you found yourself exhausted and counting down the days to the Easter break or, want to pimp your personal energy management strategy then my;
Top 3 ‘Self Care’ hacks might just hit the spot.
1) Hit the snooze button… If you are anything like me your weeks get away from you. I’m often hitting Saturday feeling like I haven’t done my quota of exercise for the week. I like to kick the weekend off by getting back on track. I’ve been wedded to this routine for years but recently, I found myself in an early Saturday morning class unable to shake the feeling that I was exhausted and going through the motions.
Radical thought. Just stop. Sleep in. Rest and recover.
Adrianna Huffington herself calls sleep her super power and I’m starting to agree as I feel my energy coming back more quickly.
2) Reignite the concept of ‘Yin Yang’ energy. What do I mean? Adapt your morning routine based on your energy level when you wake up. Fired up – go to a HIIT class. Exhausted? Book in for a little restorative ‘self care’ time like yin yoga, a bath, a gentle walk in nature.
Research shows that if we do cardio exercise when we are exhausted or stressed it could be more harmful to our bodies in the longer term.
3) Cull the commitments. I’m normally a huge advocate of ‘sacred Sundays’ a strategy I shamelessly stole from my mate Sharon Williams from Alfa Coaching. Don’t make any commitments or plans for 1 day of the week so you can just wake up and see how you feel. Go where the mood and energy levels take you. I went a step further in February and didn’t make any plans for a whole month (sorry friends nothing personal). This also happened to coincide with me doing dry Feb* so it also helped me stay on track and removed temptation.
Disclaimers….Big thanks also to my partner who has been and, continues to be, my accountability buddy who is frequently uttering the words ‘stop making too many commitments’ when I say I’m tired. It’s starting to cut through! Especially important if you are someone who derives energy from people – when the battery is low the energy equation may be off.
Also, watch out for the inner critic and give yourself permission to adopt ‘self care’ (there’s a whole post coming on this later!) Have you ever noticed that we can often be ‘addicted’ to the feeling of energy that aerobatic exercise or being ‘busy’ socially creates? It can oftern feel different to the rest, restoration and calmness that comes with ‘self care’ based practices. In the coaching room, we aften reset the feeling associated with ‘success’ to help our clients become more familiar with this new way of being. A thought that may help you; ‘what if this feeling of rest or calm was exactly when you know you were doing ‘self care’ right? What if you’re actually ‘on track’ with your wellbeing and energy levels when it feels different?’
*Really need a serious energy boost and to fully embody self care? Try a ‘dry’ month to reboot your gutt and remove the things in your diet that take a heavy load on your body to digest and assimilate. For me this is removing alcohol, caffine, gluten, dairy, meat, processed sugar and dialling up the wholefoods – fruit and veggies that can nutrient charge the food on your plate. Always consult a specialist in my case, Wholefoods chef and auvedic practitioner Ben Horne, that can give you advice based on your body type and diatary needs.
To your energy success!
P.S. Whenever you’re ready…here are 3 ways we can help you personally or, the people within your company, thrive more;