As mothers and wives, we sometimes forget that we need to nurture ourselves as much as those we love. The days are never long enough and there is always one more thing on that "to do" list. Unfortunately, this leads to us neglecting the needs of our body, mind and spirit - our primary food.
The term "primary foods" was coined by IIN the school where I studied, and refers to what feeds the soul - loving relationships, regular exercise, spiritual practice and a fulfilling career. When primary foods are in balance, everything else falls into place. It is important not to forget that food is only one source of nourishment. All parts of our lives affect our health as a whole.
Here are three ways to incorporate small changes into your life and receive big results:
1. Treat yourself to daily quiet time: Carve out time every day to recharge. It could be reading a book, praying, meditating or journaling - it's up to you. Try this simple exercise called Morning Pages (developed by Julia Cameron) to help start your day off right: Before you go to sleep, take out a notebook and pen and put it beside your bed. As soon as you wake up, start writing everything and anything that is on your mind - a stream of consciousness writing. This is not a novel and it's not for anyone to read so just let it flow naturally. There is no wrong way to do this exercise. You might be surprised at what comes out of this exercise! I find after doing them, I feel refreshed and my mind tends to not be as busy during the day.
2. Include exercise as part of your daily life: Experiment with different kinds of exercise and aim for putting aside 30 minutes to one hour 4 times per week. Do you love to be outside? Try biking, running or taking a brisk walk. If you are new to running, Google C25K. This program gets you from the couch to running a 5k in 9 weeks. Running not for you? Look into a local fitness studio and try a class or two until you find something you connect with. Short on time? Purchase a few DVD's and work out at home when the kids are sleeping. The key is just to make the time to get up and MOVE. Regular exercise doesn't just help you get into better shape, it also helps reduce stress, improve sleep, increase energy levels, lower blood pressure and strengthen the heart just to name a few!
3. Take time to connect with your spouse every day: When our kids are young, they are the center of our world and sometimes our relationship with our partner ends up being neglected. Even if it's just ½ hour after the kids go to bed, it's important to nurture your relationship. Has it been a long time since you have gone out, just the two of you? Get a babysitter and mark the date on your calendar! Or make a list of fun "date night in" activities. Whatever you decide, it's important to make a point to spend quality time with your spouse every day.
Once your primary foods are in balance, everything else can fall into place, including reaching health goals like losing weight and eating a more healthful diet. It's time to reconnect and nurture yourself. You are worth it!
Alethea Copelas is the owner of Compass Nutrition, a holistic health coaching practice in Massachusetts that focuses on empowering women to find their personal path to wellness. In addition, as a vegetarian chef, she offers in home cooking classes and menu planning. You can contact Alethea at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her website at http://www.compassnutritionma.com. She can also be found at facebook.com/compassnutritionma, twitter @nutritionma, pinterest.com/nutritionma. Contact her for your free health history consultation today and regain your health and wellness!
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