Sometimes I feel like a hot mess. I'll be running from one client to the next, cooking, cleaning, trying to figure out how the heck I pay taxes, blogging, remembering to register my car with the DMV, oh yeah, and then taking care of myself!
When I was younger I used to let these long to-do lists completely consume me. I'd get overwhelmed by all of the bills, long hours and chores that had to get ticked off the list, leaving me in total stress mode or in tears. I still find myself pulling my hair out or on the verge of a breakdown when I'm overwhelmed, but not nearly as often as I used to.
I've learned to take control of my time and my to do list from a place of power, rather than weakness. I've learned to stay healthy and focussed and not succumb to just saying, "F*** it, I'm stressed, so I'm going to eat this bag of tortilla chips". It's incredibly hard to stay grounded, and impossibly hard to stay powerful and healthy when your life feels like a hot mess because most of the time, the first thing to go when we are busy is our focus on ourselves.
So, today, I want to share 5 steps with you that will help shift your focus back to yourself and keep you healthy and strong when life gets stressful and crazy. Why? Because when things get busy and you forget to take care of yourself, everything around you suffers. When I began implementing these 5 things into my life, I found that I spent less time in freak out mode and more time in getting shit done mode, plus I feet better!
1. You Control Time, Time Does Not Control You :: This is one of the most important lessons that I've learned over the last year. We all have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce and Mark Zuckerberg, and look at all that they've accomplished! Start to control time by giving yourself a timeline for everything that you do. Do you have a deadline coming up? Schedule in an hour a day to work on your project. Do you need to find more time for exercise? Schedule it in and stick to it like an appointment. If you begin scheduling everything that you need to do, it gives you a major sense of control over your life and your to do list. At the start of every week I schedule in my exercise, grocery shopping, bill paying, I even schedule in dates with my husband and alone time for myself. I set reminders for things that I've scheduled and then I reference my to do list multiple times per day. It helps keep me on track and gives me a sense of empowerment over time. Own it, don't let it own you.
2. Find Out What Energizes You :: I'm a big alone time person. I can't give my all to my work, husband, friends or family when I'm not recharged. I get cranky, moody and have major brain fog if I don't schedule in time to myself to just breathe, reflect on my day, mediate with my crystals or just scroll through Instagram. Even if you aren't a big alone person, we all require a way to recharge, so I encourage you to explore what that means for you. Do you need to schedule in a 20 minute walk every day so that when you get back you can focus on finishing your work or be more present for your kids? Do you feel energized after you speak with a friend on the phone and share stories about your weekend? Figure out what energizes you and makes you feel charged, then add that to your schedule and stick to it.
3. Grocery Shop at Lunch :: This sounds kind of odd, I know. What I mean by grocery shop at lunch is, take advantage of the 30 minute windows that you have to get stuff done. For me, that means getting my grocery shopping done during lunchtime or breaks between clients. I know that I've only got a certain amount of time to get my shopping done so I'm as organized and fast as I can be. I write out my list, head to the store and I'm in and out in about 20 minutes. So, think about when you have a small window of time in your day and how you could use it more effectively. Maybe it really is getting your grocery shopping done in the 20 minutes that you have before you pick up your kids from school. Or, it's the 15 minutes that you have in the morning when you're normally checking your social media pages but could be cooking yourself a healthy breakfast or sending out a couple of emails. Take advantage of small windows of time because they really add up.
4. Fat is Fabulous :: Eat healthy fats to nourish your body. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to give your body the nourishment that it needs so that it can perform at the highest level. When I've got a crazy schedule and a jam packed day, I always set myself up for success by cooking a big, nutritious breakfast full of lots of healthy fats, protein and veggies. Some of my go-to's include fried eggs in butter with avocado, bulletproof coffee, an avocado smoothie bowl or my awaken cereal recipe. All of these breakfasts are jammed with healthy fats that keep me full, energized and thinking clearly all day long. No more hot mess!
5. Use a Slow Cooker :: A slow cooker is like having your own personal chef. All you have to do is throw food into it, press on and you've got yourself a delicious meal just a few hours later. It saves cooking and cleanup time and also sets you up with several meals worth of food. Talk about a major time saver. Try some of my slow cooker recipes like my shredded beef!
You are in control and only you have the tools to slow things down, recharge and check things off your list. It's not easy, and like I said, I still have my moments of major weakness, but you don't have to feel scattered, stressed or crazed all of the time.