Being a mama, wife, friend and a good, calm person becomes overwhelming after a while. Sometimes you just need to reset! For me, cleaning and pretty-fying my surrounds does exactly that. The moment I feel my home is neat and organised, I find the power to tackle all the other everyday-challenges I face! Here are 5 things that work for me.
De-clutter your space
If you have kids, your living room is usually cluttered with toys and things that make moving around a nightmare! Ask grandma to babysit and spend three hours packing away all the clutter that is making life harder! Find a storage solution (that is not too bad to look at!) for toys, throw out or donate unnecessary kitchen appliances and crockery and clean up all the empty shampoo bottles in the shower. Similar to what multitasking does to your brain, physical clutter overloads your senses, making you feel stressed, and impairs your ability to think creatively. Your house will be more manageable and your spirit will feel cleaner as well! Create a space where your mind doesn’t feel trapped (and you don’t trip over obstacles!)
Clean up your relationships
Sometimes a lot of anxiety is caused by relationships that are suppose to make you feel relaxed and calm! Maybe you feel out of touch with a friend or feel like you haven’t been there for your partner! Act on this immediately! Phone your friend, make a date with your partner: just make contact! This will already clean up some of the anxiety mess that the relationship is causing. Procrastination just makes it worst. Even if you make contact via social media, it is still a way to reach out and say: Hey, I’m still here! You will know something is wrong when a good thing in your life makes you feel bad! Spend more time investing in the relationships in your life that feel balanced and supportive. If the relationship is true and meant to be, it is never too late to start over.
Dust off your diary
Take some time to reflect! What are you actually spending your time on? Are you using the hour you have to yourself to get the most out of your day? Maybe running to do errands is not the right choice for you today? Yes – we all have to get stuff done, but sometimes spending an hour sitting on the couch and paging through a magazine can mean more than ticking off stuff on a to-do list! Don’t be so hard on yourself. Think about what you really need? Maybe you can skip the running around for one day and spend an hour window-shopping? Organising your calendar, whether it’s on your phone, diary or an online calendar, will make you feel more in control. Write down important dates and birthdays, set notifications and pencil a day / morning / hour for some “me-time”. Make a date with yourself! Sipping on good coffee and watching people can work wonders for me! Organising in advance will lessen the stress and make your goals more achievable: always make time for mental and emotional health.
Out with the old
If it doesn’t fit- give it away. If it doesn’t work – throw it away! Get rid of the old clothes that you hold on to for no reason and make space for something new! On a personal level – out with the old routines and introduce something new into your daily life. Find 10 minutes in the morning for sit-ups, think of a new, fun, daily activity for the kids and introduce something playful and fun into your relationship with your partner! Skip 30 minutes of TV and play cards once a week. Choose something you both enjoy and never find time to do! Inspire your partner to introduce something new into his/her life too!
Spruce up your knowledge
Stimulate your brain by educating yourself on topics that you have an interest in but never find time to explore. Whether it is gardening, politics, parenting or music – choose something and investigate. It can be very inspiring to read about new methods in parenting, interesting cooking techniques or advances in tech – if it sparks your interest, keep digging! Sometimes your life can keep you so occupied that you lose track of the outside world. Reconnect! Space, horses, pirates, history, robots, cars – it can be something completely random or it can be an online diploma – it’s up to you!
“Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge; it is thinking that makes what we read ours.”
It’s never easy to make a change. Take it one step at a time and see what works for you!