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Be Gentle With Yourself

We are in the final stretches of what has probably been my most challenging year as a mother, a wife, a business owner – phew – and we all just need to take a deep breath and I just want to say at this point, if you haven’t started doing so already, take it easy on yourself. The demands that this year has placed on us just to merely get through it all is above and beyond what most of us should be asked of, right? 

It’s just – phew! And I know some of us are feeling like we want to shut down. Our brains are not cooperating with us, that we are feeling tired and lethargic and “lazy.” None of that is true. All of that is called Trauma Response and I’m not going to get into that because I’m not a professional when it comes to that, I’ve just read up a lot on it. It is a natural response when your body is overwhelmed to try to shut down the input that it is getting from all of the different places that it’s coming from. 

We have been mentally, physically, socially, emotionally, spiritually completely overwhelmed and our bodies are like, “I’m done. Time out. I can’t – I’m done.” 

So, if you feel like you are shutting down, yeah, that is completely normal. You need to be gentle with yourself. I understand. I know. I’m right there with you. Work still needs to get done, the kids are in school, Christmas is coming up. All of these things still need to happen. There are still expectations of ourselves, but there are still ways that you can be gentle on yourself and still accomplish the things that you need to accomplish. 

Number one is give yourself breaks. Don’t try to plow through all the things that you need to do back to back to back to back and not sit down, breathe, eat real meals, get good sleep through all of this because the more that you’re able to nourish your body through sleep, food, rest, the easier it is going to be to get through all of it. 

So being gentle by actually giving yourselves the break that you need in the day, in the week, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, a day off at the end of the week – you could work 6 days and take 1 day off. We could do that. We could do that. Or very bare, bare minimal day. 

The other thing is be kind to yourself. Don’t beat yourself up because you haven’t accomplished the unrealistic to-do list that is harping in the back of your head. Top 3 things. If you accomplish any of those top 3 things, you did good today. Celebrate the wins. Don’t harp on all the things that you have not done. You wouldn’t do that to your kids if they accomplish something. You wouldn’t then go, “Yeah, but you didn’t do this, this, this, this, this, this, this, this.” You do that to yourself. I know because I do it too. Don’t do that. Accomplish the wins and look at the to-do list. If you get 2 or 3 of those things done, you’re doing good. You’re doing good because really, our brains just want to shut down. Our bodies are over it. Our mental capacity is at full. It’s okay. You’ve got to be gentle with yourself. 

 

The thing is plan. Put a plan in place so that you don’t set yourself up to be completely stressed out and completely behind. We’ve talked about this before. Put a plan in place so that you know you are accomplishing a little bit at a time, but you’re going to get there. You’re going to get to the end of that road because we still got to get through this last little bit until you can shut down.

Last but not least, schedule the time that you will allow yourself to shut down because kind of being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel helps you to get there. Getting your kids to school, being able to close out most of your work stuff, finding that time that all things are done and you can just shut it down and you can give yourself a longer break than just a day here or a day there or an hour here and an hour there and really allow yourself to just shut down. Figure out when that time can be. A weekend would be great, 3-4 days would be fantastic, however, if you’re going to shut down, you’re going to watch Christmas movies for 3 days in a row, just sit on your couch and pyjamas, eat leftovers or order takeout. Do that. But figure out when is the time that I can shut down and really give myself a full blown break because you need it. You deserve it and that’s a very good way to be gentle with yourself. 

So, be kind to yourself. Take breaks. Take care of yourself. Eat that full meal that you need. Drink that water. Take timeouts. Go get some fresh air outside. Speak kindly to yourself. Celebrate your accomplishments during this time and plan. Plan so that it doesn’t all come slamming down on you at the last minute and set that time. Set that time for when you can shut it down because you need it. 

This year, I am really, truly am trying to take a week to shut it down. After Christmas to New Year’s like no expectations for anybody. We’re shutting it down. Recover. Recoup. When is that time for you? What can you do during that time to make life as simple and relaxing as possible? I’m not playing. 

Shut. It. Down. 

You need it. You deserve it. Oftentimes, we do not allow ourselves those big breaks, the vacations, your mind, your body, your soul, all of it needs to have the time to recuperate from this year because it has been a hell of a year. Be gentle. Be gentle on yourself. Give yourself the space and time you need to finish the year out. And Lord willing, the next year will get better a little bit by a little bit. This is not going away. We’re not going to wake up January 1st and *poof* all remnants of 2020 will be gone. That’s not happening. We all wish it would but it’s not happening. So, be gentle. Practice gentleness with yourself. Allow yourself the time to shut it down. If there’s anything, do that, okay? 

Mwah! We got this. I’m not going to say that because I’ve already gotten on people about saying, “We got this.” It’s okay if you don’t got this, but plan ahead so you can get through it. We’re going to get through it. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy and if you need some help, ask for help. 

Okay. That’s the end of my MomCare Monday rant. Love you guys! 

 

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A post shared by Elisha Wilson Beach (@mylifeisabeach)

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