How to slow down and be kinder to yourself
Every day feels like a busy day at the moment, running two businesses and having a small family means I get very little time to myself. Down time means hanging out the washing, folding clothes or cooking dinner. Thankfully my other half is an amazing co-parent which definitely helps with lowering the stress levels.
My personality type means I’m prone to anxiety and have an innate inability to relax. When that is mixed with being ambitious, conscientious and self-critical it can sometimes create a whirlwind that leaves me with a hefty dose of mental fog and burn-out.
As is probably self-evident by the creation of Go Jauntly, I’m into noticing the beauty of nature, and if I can blend that with a walk in green space then all the better. Using the app is a cue for me to slow down, even though I’m not the fastest walker. Living in the city means I’m mostly trying to get from A to B but Go Jauntly makes me notice some greenery around me and it reminds me to breathe and be thankful for what I’ve got.
If the truth be told, I’m not an “outdoorsy person”. At the grand old age of 37, I’ve just been gifted my first pair of walking shoes and that’s only to spare my gold pumps from going brown! That aside, my 4 year old and my hubbo are the reasons why I need to remember to slow down. Days and weeks fly by with work and this is the only life we have so I really need to be kinder to myself and turn down the pace whenever I can.
It’s hard not to miss all the talk about mindfulness and meditation, and one thing that popped out at me is the Spaced Out Competition started by South Korean artist WoopsYang. Part art installation, part stunt, she has created a gathering in a park to enable their audience to quieten down and be “un-busy”. All you need to do is sit down, tilt your head backwards, blur your eyesight and space-out - something I think we could all do with everyday.
Recently I’ve been trying other things to help me unwind and be kinder to self:
Walking the scenic route home - ideally through a park or a bit of green space, or finding a new walking route to take friends and family on and then share it with everyone else - I love that - experiences bring me so much happiness and memories to treasure!
I try and buy local cut flowers for myself every time I do something I’m proud of. I always forget to be thankful for my own achievements and why wait for someone else to buy flowers for you? Every time I look at the flowers, it reminds me of what a great job I did that time - hehe.
Mute groups on Whatsapp - there’s so much noise coming from all angles - admittedly I’m having little success with this as there’s still a notification telling me there’s unread messages which I can’t seem to get rid of, but I can choose to look at them when I want!
As I mentioned above, I hardly get any spare time so on those particularly bad days I try and notice nature around me, even if it’s on a short break between meetings. See a weed in the pavement, appreciate it, see a plant flowering, stop and look at it, see a friendly cat on the street, stop and stroke it. That kinda thing. :)
And finally, we’ve just got a team subscription to the Calm app, it’s been great for helping me get to sleep after a long day.
I would love to know what things you’ve been trying out to help you slow down and unwind. Have you got any tips on how to be more mindful or to appreciate yourself more? What helps you be more compassionate towards yourself? Let us know in the comments below!
Thanks so much!