Over this last generation, women have moved out of largely staying in the traditional role of taking care of the family and home duties. It seems however, that women have moved into a new phase of not only being able to HAVE IT ALL, but trying to DO IT ALL.
So much has shifted and this is taking some adjusting to!! Women, more so than men, often care take everyone around them, but unfortunately this leads to many women feeling extremely depleted, not caring for their own needs and becoming stressed and wornout and dealing with many levels of adrenal fatigue.
I too, thought I could do it all. While I didn’t have kids, I was in a relationship, spending 30 hours or so a week trying to get a business off the ground and then having to start earning a living for myself. I was working a crazy quantity of hours and feeling incredibly stressed in every area of my life. This definitely took a major toll on me in the form of severe adrenal fatigue (the result of chronic stress over an extended period of time). It took me 3 years to recover. Not something I would recommend!!
Women, there is a less stressful way and I have 3 solutions here to help you heal this feeling of depletion (effectively overworked adrenals), and to start seriously putting yourself first. I know this can ruffle some feathers, but honestly what good are you to anyone, when you are worn out, tired and feeling unwell?
1. Clearly Communicate your Needs with Those Around You.
If you are in a family situation, sit down with your family; tell them how you feel and express your needs. Make plans to carve out pockets of time for yourself.
There may be a phasing in period for everyone involved, but please persist with finding ways to support your self-care. It may be as simple as allowing yourself an uninterrupted 20 minute bath time every night or a 20 minute break in the morning to just be in your own space. Perhaps once a month you head out with friends or take that workshop you’ve always wanted to do.
Setting the intention is really important and when you are really clear about what you need, it is much easier for those close to you, to help you out.
If the people in your life are not receptive and understanding, you could bring in a third party such as a counsellor to help you work things through. If you are still not able to work something out, it may be time to make some tough decisions. Really question whether the relationships in your life are serving you or not. This life is not a dress rehearsal, it is for keeps.
2. Incorporate Calming Activities into Your Life.
Stress has a profound impact on the health of your body, it puts you into a fight or flight response way too often; and if this is happening over an extended period of time, your adrenals become very “tired” and a myriad of health effects can occur.
Start small and begin to create a daily program of activities that support you.
Listen to that small, intuitive voice inside of you that is guiding you to what you need.
Some ideas include:
- Stop several times a day at planned out intervals and simply breathe for 1 minute.
- Take out a journal and for 5 minutes express how you are feeling.
- Go outside into nature for a gentle and restorative walk or just to sit and be.
It’s so easy to underestimate the value of doing these things; it may seem really insignificant, but these things done consistently over time are truly life-changing.
3. Engage in Uplifting Activities.
Do something new or something you have often done that truly uplifts your spirit and inspires you. It may be a visit to the theatre once a month, doing a short workshop on something that excites you or arranging a regular date night with your partner.
When you engage in activities or situations that truly uplift your spirit, much research suggests that all the systems in your body function better.
You always have the choice to create positive change in your life. Sometimes, it really needs to be with one tiny step at a time, creating a new way of being in your life. Be patient with this process as it can take some adjusting to.
However you choose to do it, have faith and trust that you CAN turn your life around for the better.
Joan Borysenko in Fried: Why You Burn Out and How to Revive put it so eloquently when she said on page 14,
“Let your doing arise organically from being in the Now. You will get much more done – and with an unparalleled elegant and creative genius – when your work grows from the inspiration that flows through you rather than from the effort of squeezing your own adrenals.”
Don’t put off your health and wellbeing until tomorrow. Start TODAY with restoring your adrenals and changing your life for the better.
If you need more support I would love you to come and join the conversation on facebook or sign up below to receive even more help.
You can do this and I am here to support you!!
P.S. Joan’s book is a great read, (my referral link 🙂 ) and she shares much of her own personal experience. This is so valuable in helping to see the similarities in your own life.