I keep lists in my head or in my notebook of things that make me feel good. A person must be able to self-soothe. Self-care and soothing IS a part of living an optimal life. And the truth is that sometimes the stress of living, and things that you would like to get done, need to get done, or wish you could, coupled with the sometimes heart wrenching affairs that go on in the world, or just the relentlessness of parenting (especially the little ones) can take a toll on a person. And sometimes when you are in this stressed mode, especially if you’ve allowed yourself to get deep in, it’s hard to remember how to get out. Knowing what makes you feel good is essential. Doing it is even more important.
I find it helpful to keep a list. Last month I put something on my list that I never ever ever ever thought I would see there.
I was feeling overwhelmed by whatever, I can’t even remember anymore. Just the normal life of raising two littles, running a business and having goals probably. And instead of doing something on my list I chose to clean my house instead.
And that’s when I discovered what a wondrous affect it had on my being. I actually felt SOOOO much better after I was done. I felt like my To Do list didn’t matter anymore, or that I would be able to accomplish it, or that I could think straight because everything was in its place again. It had such an enormous space increasing effect on my being that I actually wrote it on my list. Because I also thought– “No way I’m going to remember to clean instead of do other things when I’m feeling overwhelmed.”
If you don’t already have a list I highly recommend one. It only takes a few minutes. Just jot down the things that you love to do or the things that make you feel relaxed or happy or satisfied. You might be surprised at how handy this comes in for those moments when you are totally fried and you just can’t remember where to start in the climb back to feeling good.
Here are a few of mine to get you going: hot baths, going to bed early, meditating, Jin Shin Jyutsu, a good book in bed, exercising, coloring, and now “organizing or cleaning my physical space.”
My sister, who is the only person I know who actually and honestly likes to clean will say, “duh!” but seriously, aside from her, what sane person would have put that on their happy list of things to do? I honestly would not have ever suspected.
Dust. Dust. Wipe.
Try it, let me know. Does this work for you too?