It’s 1:10am on a Monday night. We’ve had a busy day full of housework, schoolwork, work work, a trip to the YMCA for some exercise, errands to buy Julianna a new big girl bike and return a few things to Target, and the day was finished off with a few hours of Mommy Night girl talk. Great day chock full of goodness. But, needless to say – I’m TIRED.
Are you the type (like me!) that tries to fit everything you can possibly think of into each little nook and cranny of your life? Listen. I’m all for being ambitious and working your hustle. I’d so much rather get to the end of my life and be able to say I worked hard to do the things I wanted to do instead of letting opportunity continually pass me by as I settled for mediocrity. But sister – you CAN’T. DO. EVERYTHING. I know I’m totally preaching to the choir right now, which is exactly why I’m writing this.
In this season of marriage, motherhood and homemaking my “to-do” list is never-ending. The demands for my time, energy, focus, skills and even love increase by the day. And honestly – I don’t foresee that changing anytime soon. So what’s a maxed out and exhausted mama to do when the world is constantly tugging at her mind and heart, urging her to keep moving, keep doing and keep stretching to the limit? Check out this list I made for myself of seven practical things to do when you’re just tired.
Take a few moments to stop what you’re doing, close your eyes and breathe in deeply through your nose. As you exhale through your mouth, release the weighty burden of all your many demands. Give yourself a hug as you continue to breathe in calm and breathe out stress. Remember, this is your life and you’re allowed to take care of you for a change!
Guzzling a tall glass of water or making a cup of soothing herbal tea are both excellent ways to rehydrate and reenergize the body. You could even keep things interesting by infusing your water with some fresh fruit. Interestingly, dehydration is one of the leading causes of frequent and chronic lethargy and fatigue, so – if you’re feeling sleepy, pump that water!!
When you find yourself feeling sluggish during the day, get up out of your seat and move your body. Go for a walk around the block for some sunshine and fresh air, or pop a squat on the floor to do some light stretching. You’ll be amazed at how quickly a little physical activity can improve your energy and mood!
4. Eat Well
Want to know one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned since becoming a mama? The way we fuel our bodies directly dictates how our bodies and minds perform. To help regulate and optimize blood sugar, energy levels, brain function and moods make sure you are eating a diet low in processed sugars and grains, and high in healthy proteins, fats and fiber.
5. Start Saying “NO”
Like I said before – one of the biggest reasons I end up exhausted and maxed out is because I consistently try to do too much. Instead of trying to do and be everything to everyone, it’s time to take personal responsibility for the things we say yes or no to. Think about everything before you do it. Is it wise? Is is realistic? Do you have the time? Do you have the ability? Is it your responsibility? Is it a high or low priority? What will you have to sacrifice to do it? Making a habit of answering these questions before deciding to do things will go a long way toward helping you learn to stop overcommitting yourself.
6. Be Okay
I don’t know about you, but I am often my own worst critic. I have astronomically high expectations of myself, which is usually the driving force behind why I chronically overcommit and overwork myself. I once read a great quote that said, “Be nice to yourself. It’s hard to be happy when someone’s mean to you all the time.” Instead of constantly pushing ourselves to do more or be more, let’s learn to let some things go that aren’t really that important and be OKAY with wherever we are at. Sometimes we just need a break. And that’s okay!!
I feel that this point doesn’t really need much explanation. If you’re tired, get some sleep dude! Set an alarm for 30 minutes before you want to be sleeping and start winding down. Turn electronics and bright lights off. Wash your face, brush your teeth and drink a glass of water. Stretch out your body a bit, climb into your nice, cozy bed and let your mind begin to wander. If it’s the middle of the day and you’re lucky enough to be home and your kiddos take a nap – lie down for a quick catnap too! This really is very basic: when tired, sleep.
Now that it is 2:21am and I’ve officially had to wake myself up at least six times while writing this post, I am going to put this message into ACTION and sign off. I hope reading through these tips has helped free you and inspire you to invest in yourself and allow yourself the time you need to get some rest. Bookmark this page on your phone or print it off and hang it on your refrigerator so you’ll remember how and why it’s important to take care of yourself when you’re tired! No one else is going to if you don’t!