Keeping Resilient in a hectic world
For so many of us 2020 has been quite frankly a wacky mindboggling experience. One that will go down in history, and the millennial generations will share with their grandkids as ‘the year the world stopped’ (almost). But, every generation across time has had its fair share of catastrophic events, natural disasters, viral outbreaks and war that caused devastation, hardship and despair for so many. The difference in time past is the amount of exposure (to the outside world) was significantly less. We generally only knew what was going on in our own town or city, or even street in some cases if you go back to my grand parents era.
In the world we live in today, we are so over exposed, twenty four seven, and over exposure is never a good thing, you only need to ask a photographer or pastry chef!
Our minds are bamboozled every angle, every minute of the day, 365 days a year. The news media share on umpteen channels the same but different, delivering 99% of the time bad news that makes us fear the world we live in. Then there is the social media platforms; Facebook, Instagram, Tik tok, Snapchat, linked In, scrolling through people sharing simple snippets or over-exposing us to their life. Closer to home we have trials and tribulations within our own family units and work network. We are more connected than ever to work, because of the advancements in technology, and we have access to everything 24/7. Often we can’t even turn these off because lets not forget the expectations we put on ourselves, at home, in our business, our bosses expectations or the corporate ‘work’ ethos of whichever company you work for. It is easy to see how our minds can get jammed in ‘hyper arousal’ creating dis-ease in our mind-body and no wonder many of us feel totally overwhelmed, anxious, even depressed or end up ill.
Neither am I anti technology, or anti News, or even apposed to your bosses work expectations, nor am I a hater of social platforms. I just firmly believe that there is a direct correlation in rising levels of mental dis-stress in the world today as a result of the advancements of our society. In particular the addition of technology and smart phones making it increasingly more difficult to un-plug and just be with you.
So how do we keep ourselves emotionally well, grounded and balanced in a world we are endlessly over exposed to?
I personally believe it is now the responsibility of each of us to create healthy boundaries for ourselves and teach our children to have them too. Learn to become aware of the effect being ‘over exposed’ and ‘switched on’ has on you, personally. We are all unique and what one person may find overwhelming is not the same for another, but in order to maintain emotional health & wellbeing we must learn to create inner calm.
Here are 6 habits you can implement today to nourish yourself & protect your emotional and physical health.
1. Detox your Social media platforms.
We can literally lose days aimlessly scrolling, with no real thought, purpose or intention to why we are even doing it. You can start your detox with a 24hr fast; literally don’t go on, I promise you can do it! Delete any apps off your phone that you don’t use and, switch off all your notifications, you don’t need them beeping or popping up every few minutes distracting you. And only have set times in the day you check social media. For example; after lunch, or after your workday. Yes, you may miss it for a day or two but I bet after a few days you won’t be so bothered.
2. Take time out in your day to connect with you and meditate
Living in a fast paced world we must find the space to slow down and calm our minds. The brain is not designed to be so plugged-in and switched-on all the time. Sitting quietly and meditating is a great tool to help us reconnect with ourselves again. There are many types of meditation, but quite simply the best place to start is sitting, in silence or with a guided recording every day, start with a few minutes and build up. Aim for 15-20 minutes every day as your time to go within. Doing so has the ability to lower blood pressure, reduce stress hormones, increase a sense of calm and even increase inspiration and creativity.
3. Daily gratitude
Its one of the simplest things you can do. Look at the world around you and feel grateful. There is no better way to free the mind from the chains of every day living than to show appreciation for what you have, there is always something to be grateful for. Not only does it feel good, it increases trust in the flow of life and directs your mind to the positive.
4. Eat Natural foods (most of the time)
The food we eat can have a profound impact on our emotional wellbeing. Eating processed foods too often can cause not only an increase in internal inflammation, potential weight gain, increase BP and blood sugar levels they can also exacerbate anxiety & overwhelm. Aim to eat little and often if you are someone who feels anxious, overwhelmed or stressed and focus on eating adequate protein and whole natural foods rather than quick fix convenience ones. Start with planning your weekly meals/snacks, creating a shopping list and preparing your meals at home.
5. Drink more water
Even when we are only 1-2% dehydrated our mental functions are affected, and you don’t always have to feel thirsty to be in need of more fluid within the body. Start a habit of drinking a large glass of water as soon as you wake up, with a squeeze of lemon juice if you like. Then make time to drink frequently throughout the day, aiming for around 2-3L for an average adult. If you are likely to forget while you make this habit stick, have your water bottle visible or leave a note for yourself.
6. Respect your sleep
One of the first things we sacrifice is often sleep. Research shows the average adult needs between 7-9 hours per night to function cognitively well. Sleep debt occurs when we get consistently less than 6 hours and does affect our ability to manage stressful situations, be productive, concentrate and remain mentally resilient. If you wake at say 6am work backwards 7-9hrs and then begin to cultivate a bedtime routine for between 9-11pm. It doesn’t matter if you don’t go to sleep, just aim to get ready for, settle down and be in bed for that time. For best results, switch off all devices 45-60mins before bed, the bright lights ‘wake’ up the brain and drive down the production of our sleep hormone melatonin (meaning you can awake longer, feeling tired but wired).
By creating space in your day to focus on your inner world, to create habits that sooth and calm your mind you will feel better in yourself, handle the day better, feel more focused, productive and in the long run generally happier too.
Marti Susanne Hobby
Marti is a Rapid Change Coach, Therapist, NLP Practitioner, Theta Energy Healer & Nutritionist. She specializes in empowering women to be their best self / low self-esteem / confidence / chronic health conditions.