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self care

0 In mental health/ self care/ wellness

10 Journal Prompts for Self Discovery and Reflection

10 journal prompts for self discovery

Recently, I started journaling. I have always enjoyed writing and for me, putting my thoughts to paper has been great for self reflection, goal setting, and overall mental health. I’m sharing some easy ways to get started journaling and 10 journal prompts for self discovery and reflection.

Why journal?

Writing in a journal has been shown to be an effective way to organize one’s thoughts and clear the mental clutter. Given the fact that we have been living in a pandemic, social distancing, homeschooling, working from home, etc. many of us are feeling the stress and burnout.

Journaling can be a great resource for helping one recognize their feelings if they tend to bury them (ahem, me!), cope with anxiety or depression and aid in personal development and setting goals. It’s a safe space where you can have a little check in with yourself daily and may also be useful in helping recognize any patterns.

Tips to get started

1.) Get a journal. You don’t need anything fancy, a simple notebook is just fine or you can choose from several pretty ones on Amazon.

2.) Write! You can start with just brain dumping where you basically just write whatever is on your mind. For me, I sometimes find that blank page intimidating and I like to start with some journal prompts. (See below). However you start, just write.

3.) Be consistent. Make it a habit . Try to do it at the same time each day. And if you a miss a day, or 2 or 5, don’t beat yourself up. Just pick up the pen and write again. Eventually, the more you do it, it will become second nature.

4.) Make it your own. You can draw, add photos, do whatever you want. It’s just for you. The main thing is to be honest with yourself.

 

Here are 10 journal prompts for self discovery and reflection

 

1.) What are my top strengths?

2.) What is something I thought I couldn’t do but did anyway?

3.) What does my ideal life look like? How can I achieve it?

4.) Top 5 short and long term goals.

5.) Write about something that’s been weighing heavy on you or causing worry.

6.) What made me feel good today?

7.) If my body could talk it would say…

8.) Write a list – bucket list, books you want to read, places you want to visit, etc.

9.)How do you feel right now? Why do you think you feel that way?

10.) What’s something I need to let go of that’s holding me back?

 

 

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10 journal prompts for self discovery and reflection

 

 

1 In Lifestyle/ self care

Ways to keep yourself from slipping into a funk while social distancing

  This post was sponsored by Reebok as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
Thank you to Reebok for sponsoring today’s post.

Quarantine life day 1,354. That’s what it feels like anyway. And while my husband and I are both deemed essential and have to go to work, we’re still feeling the slump from not being able to go anywhere or see family or friends. There are some things that you can do to keep yourself feeling upbeat. I’m sharing with you some ways to keep yourself from slipping into a funk while social distancing.

1.) Get dressed every morning – Getting dressed, doing my hair and throwing on a little makeup makes me feel human and like a contributing member of society. This is something I learned back when I was home on maternity leave. You don’t have to get all fancy. Some days I put on jeans but most of the time it’s comfy athleisure. I love the new Reebok all-inclusive sizing line at Kohl’s.  They carry sizes from XS-4XL. The line is perfect for whether you’re lounging at home, chasing the kids or getting in a workout.

Ways to prevent yourself from slipping in a funk while social distancing

2.) Do something active – Exercising is a great way to boost one’s mood and also burn off all of those yummy treats and drinks that we’ve been consuming while home quarantined. Daily walks, bike rides and going for hikes has been a way for our whole family to exercise together and burn off some steam.

3.) Get outside – If there’s a silver lining it’s that this pandemic has come at time where it’s starting to get nice out. This is a great time to get outside and do some spring yard work or spring cleaning. Since we moved into our house a few years ago I’ve been wanting to start a garden and this was the perfect opportunity.

4.) Connect virtually with family/friends – Thankfully we live in a technological savvy world and there’s several apps that make it easier to connect with loved ones. Set up a virtual Happy Hour or play games with family and friends from afar with the Cards Against Humanity Lab.

 

What are some ways you’re getting through this time at home?

 

Be sure to head to Kohls and check out their new line of athleisure!

 

Prevent yourself from slipping into a funk while social distancing

 

 

 

1 In Motherhood/ self care

Why every mom should take a night away

Why every mom should take a night away by themself
This post is sponsored by The Gideon Putnam and Roosevelt Baths but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

I recently was scrolling through Facebook when an article caught my attention – “Why every mom needs a solo vacation”. That’s exactly what I need I thought to myself. But is that selfish? Can I leave my husband alone with two little kids under 3 while I go on a vacation? Ok so maybe not a week, but I could go away for one night I justified to myself. So that is just what I did.

I booked a night at the Gideon Putnam in Saratoga, that way I wouldn’t be too far in case something should happen to the boys. I made plans for a mineral bath and massage the following morning at the Roosevelt Baths. I could hardly wait. A night away to myself. I hadn’t had a night to myself in almost four years.

Friday night as soon as the hubs got home, I kissed him and the kids goodbye and headed up to Saratoga. I hit tons of traffic on the Northway but I didn’t care. I was alone by myself in the car and rocking out to Eminem and 50 cent like I was back in the year 2000.

I walked through the doors of the hotel to check in and I had never felt so free. I made my way up to my room, slipped into a plush bathrobe and ordered myself some dinner and a glass of wine. It felt so indulgent. I settled in for the night in my large king sized bed all for me and my book. I couldn’t even recall the last time I was able to relax with a good book uninterrupted.

The next morning, I woke up and took a nice hot shower, got dressed and headed out for a cup of coffee and brisk walk. Alone in the fresh air, I was finally aware of my own thoughts. I thought about who I had become over the past few years and who I wanted to be, where I saw myself in the next few years. I re-connected with myself, the person I was before becoming a mom. My number one job will always be a mother, but I have other aspirations for myself too both in my career and in my personal life.  With my goals set in my mind, I strolled over to the Roosevelt Baths for my mineral bath and massage. As I floated in the large tub, I listened to the spa music and the sounds of the water in the tub. All of my tensions literally melted away and I felt like I left them behind in the bath.

Roosevelt Mineral baths

As I got back in the car to head home, I felt energized and refreshed with a new sense of mental clarity. I walked in the house and was greeted with a huge hug from my three year old as he jumped in my arms and the baby smiling and cooing when he saw me. I realized then that taking a night away every so often wasn’t selfish at all. They deserved the best version of me.

So if you’re feeling frazzled and like you’ve lost touch with yourself, take a night away. I promise you it’s just what you need.

I think I might make it an annual thing 😉

And thank you to the Gideon Putnam and Roosevelt Baths for my little “momcation”.

 

Read my post on

10 Self Care Tips for Moms

 

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mom in hotel bed stretching

0 In Motherhood/ postpartum anxiety/ postpartum depression/ self care

My top 4 tips for tackling anxiety

4 tips for managing anxiety
This post is sponsored by Walgreens but all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.

(Zip up hoodie from Mother Bee Maternity)

For years I have struggled with anxiety, long before becoming a mother.  My first experience with it was my senior year of college.  I woke up in the middle of the night and felt like I was being strangled.  My body was paralyzed and I couldn’t move.  I was absolutely terrified and didn’t realize then that it was in fact anxiety.  Once I became a mom, I was a constant bundle of nerves – Is he breathing? Is he eating enough? Am I spending enough quality time with him? What I thought were normal worries and concern snowballed into a giant panic attack when I was 10 months postpartum.

The thing about anxiety is that it’s a constant battle that ebbs and flows – some days are good, others are more challenging.  For the past two years I have been able to keep my anxiety in check with some helpful changes.

Here are my top 4 tips for tackling anxiety:

 

1.) Create a routine – Coming up with a daily routine helps diminish any feelings of anxiety. It’s something that is the same each day and you can come to depend on. Eating wholesome foods, getting some exercise, daily medication and a good night’s sleep are the four major components of my routine.  I make it a point and my self care to ensure that I don’t stray from my routine because if I do, it throws me out of whack.

I first went on anxiety medication when I was in nursing school. I remember at my appointment asking my doctor to prescribe me something, I felt alot of shame.  I wasn’t the best at remembering to take it, some days I would, others I would go 3-4 days without. Shortly after finishing school, and becoming acclimated with my new job, I felt better and took myself off of my medication.  Those feelings of panic and dread slowly started to creep in again. After I had my son, I went back on anxiety medication.  This time, I made it a priority to take my medication daily so that I could be my best self for him and my family.  And now Walgreens is making it easier to stay up to date on your medication adherence. Be sure to download the app to make filling your re-fills a whole lot easier http://bit.ly/redphone-wakeup.

2.) Don’t procrastinate -Whenever we have a lot to do, it’s normal to want to put things off. The thing is, procrastination makes you feel even more overwhelmed.  I like to use lists and write down all of the things I need to do that day. I try to tackle the more challenging things early in the morning when I’m at my best, crossing things off as I go. Not only does this help keep me organized, but I also feel like I’ve accomplished something.

 

3.) Breathe – mindful breathing or meditation is one of my favorite tips I learned in cognitive behavioral therapy. It’s easy to do and you can do it anywhere. Mindful breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system, shutting off our “fight or flight response” when we’re stressed and telling our mind to “rest”. To practice mindful breathing:

  • Close your eyes and inhale through your nose for 4 seconds.
  • Hold that breath for 7 seconds.
  • Then slowly exhale for 8 seconds.

After a few cycles, I feel more relaxed and centered.

 

4.) Talk to someone – Whether you talk to a trusted family member or friend, or enlist the help of a counselor or therapist, talking to someone is very helpful. Not only do you feel like someone is listening, but it can also help you identify your triggers so that you know what things make you feel more anxious or stressed.

 

4 tips for managing anxiety