All about Jess + Lifestyle

How slowing down can improve your health

17 May 2013
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I get upset when I catch myself ‘rushing through life’.

Are you on the treadmill of life and can’t seem to get off?

We all tend to have endless to-do-lists and there are never enough hours in the day.  It is so hard to stop this cycle as we need to function as human beings and we cannot just sit back, relax and expect others to do the work for us. We have bills to pay, kids to feed, degrees to obtain and a job role to fulfil.  I know, I know.

I live in Sydney, Australia and I can tell you this is how most of us are living. We are rushing people! And we do not know how to stop, breathe, and take it all in.

The problem with this non stop new age of living is that it really holds us from being able to fully embrace the present moment in our lives.  We end up feeling exhausted, overwhelmed and actually depleted of all energy and zest for life.

Right now is all that matters…

Our health can also take a toll with this non stop-rushing syndrome. We almost forget to breathe, chew our food, laugh and greet people with a smile. We are too busy for all that!!! RIGHT? Too busy to be happy and well mannered! Because we are exhausted! And you can’t blame us!

Are you one of that person who sits on the toilet and reads their emails? I f you are, you have rushing syndrome! Is this what it has come to?

Maybe a few of you are not agreeing with me and you go slowly through life and if you are one of those…I congratulate you!

When we slow down and find stillness in our days we will ultimately conduct ourselves better as human beings. We are overall going to be more productive. But your body needs some time out first.  Our bodies cannot cope with the go go go.

I can be a rushing woman and I do not like it!! Here are my top tips to slow down and bring balance to my days when I catch myself rushing…

1. Technology off!

Switch your phone on airplane mode for an hour or two during the day. This will give you some to rejuvenate and allows you get things done efficiently.

My rule is for all technology to be off by 9pm. The electromagnetic fields of technology mess with the pineal gland in that brain that produces melatonin- the hormone that is responsible for sleep.

2. Practice yoga/restorative exercise

Yoga practice is an amazing way to be in the present moment. Yoga poses create an amazing stillness in the body helping us to be in the moment and connect with our bodies.  If not yoga, lie in a restorative pose.  My favourite is to lie with my legs up against the wall and lie for 10 minutes.

3. Walk in solitude in nature – barefoot if you can

Even just for a few minutes a day. Leave your phone behind and walk in nature. Connect your feet to the earth and take in the fresh air. This will really rejuvenate your mind.

4. Keep your emails short and check them only 2x/day

I really just refuse to allow my emails to take over my life. There are emails that are important to attend to of course but I urge to only check them once in the morning and once at night. People will (they must) understand that you cannot attend to the email immediately. Keep emails as brief as you can.

5. Write in your gratitude journal

Write down 5 things you are grateful for each day in a diary. This really reminds us of what we have and how lucky we are- this enables us to be in the moment of life. Gratitude is what keeps me grounded.

6. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself

You are enough, just as you are. We must always strive to do our best but it can be so harmful to our health to put crazy amounts of pressure on ourselves. We live in a very competitive world but remember you are bringing to the world something so unique and beautiful and that is enough! Start acknowledging how much you do, not what you don’t do.

7. Don’t care what others think

This is SO unhealthy. “If you care what others think you will always be their prisoner”- James Frey.

8. Don’t be scared to say NO to social arrangements

You are most important. So if you have had a busy day or week is a social arrangement going to do you good? Or is it going to exhaust you more? Ask yourself. Your friends will always be there for you (if they good friends). Don’t be scared to say NO. This has become a real stress for people.

9. Diarize YOU time

Please! How delicious does that sound? Even just 5-10 minutes of YOU time will do you some good. Some ‘YOU time could include: a walk, reading, yoga, a massage, your favourite TV show,

10. Making an 8-hour sleep a night a commitment

Sleep is absolutely vital for all aspects of good health. Good sleep will make your days so less frantic!

11. Deep belly breathe through the day

There is a science behind this. Belly breathing signals to the brain that everything is OK. This can be amazingly beneficial to control our stress levels and bring us back to stillness.

12. ENJOY a social media-free day

Social media is taking over our lives. It is preventing us from being balanced and present. Yes, it is taking over mine. So lets aim for a social media free day and connect with our loved ones instead.

13. Look to your kids for some inspiration

Isn’t it amazing how kids are always in the moment? They are so unaffected and pure.  Enjoy the simple pleasure of life with them; looks at the birdies with them, sing along with them, draw with them, play with them.

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