As a busy mum of young children, is your body starting to feel a bit ... zapped? And if so, are you craving something that will re-energise you and give you back a little bit of zing? As busy mums ourselves, we have no doubt that there are moments when you need to take a well-earned breather!
Time to recharge, reflect and reach for a cuppa that is full of mama wellness wisdom?
top 3 ways to boost your mama energy (with young kids around)!
So, let’s set the scene: you’ve had a sleepless night of endless waking: filled with sore tummies, growing pains, and perhaps, if you’re lucky: a solid 3 hours of sleep. Your energy is zapped. But like wonder mamma, you need to power on. So, you gather all your ducklings and head to the local indoor playground: full of loud music, magazines, mayhem and alas - your 4th cup of coffee.
hat you really need: is not to only rely on your favourite brew of coffee to lift your fuel tank, but to fill up your own cup of feel-good energy – the kind that gives you the inner uplift you need to feel happier and more positive, especially when most of your energy is feeling swamped: by taking care of your growing brood.
So, hear us out, mama’s + caregivers! In this blog, we’ll introduce you to our 3 pillars of wellbeing; why they are essential to your health; and how to lock them into your daily routine, no matter what your jam is! Whether it be full-throttle workouts to wake up your mama mojo after school drop off; or more zenful moments to calm down your inner storms (of sleepless nights and those, er, middle of the night nappy accidents!), come along with us to get some spark back: into a self-care space of calm and connected, Mama-Nirvana!
what are the 3 pillars of wellness?
To begin feeling good on the inside as well as out – we’d like to introduce 3 pillars of wellness: to help you connect, ground, and balance your energy to cope with the busyness of our lives. This is done by feeding, nourishing, and elevating every one of our mental, physical, and emotional energy spaces. Whilst it may sound very woo-woo, idealistic, and hard to balance in the loud, amplified world we live in, there are ways you can slowly integrate some helpful habits into your daily routine that can help you feel more energized and more positive, to gain the feelings, sensations, and experience of getting back your mama zing!
pillar 1: your physical energy
Do you currently long to hop back into bed right after school drop-off? Hold that thought! Your body may be crying out for rest, but maybe your mind is telling you instead: that it needs a giant uplift. That not only are your heart, blood vessels, lungs, and muscles looking to be pumped with exercise, but your thoughts may be needing: a happy hormone!
the feel-good hormone
Oxytocin is known to be a natural hormone that invigorates our being when we expend energy from our body. It happens naturally and if done daily, can transform us mums slowly from being lethargic and growly, to sparkly and peppy. It may take time to get used to but invigorating your body can work wonders for your mind too!
jog that feel-good memory
If you would rather feel a bit perkier than remain in a comatose state (that trust us, is so much easier to reach simply by crawling back into bed and watching Netflix!), then begin by thinking back and reflecting - upon the kinds of activities you enjoyed doing once upon a time, pre-children.
Did you play sport at your local tennis or netball club before you had toddlers? Did you love pumping iron at the gym before pregnancy? Were you a dancing or aerobics champion before the kids arrived? Asking yourself these self-reflective questions will help you rejig and reignite your happy memories, until something joyful materialises! For these fond memories will often remind us of that triumphant feeling of accomplishment: that once gave us oodles of feel-good vibrations running through our body.
next: buddy up
Keen to try a new physical activity that will bring you back some confidence, but need some extra confidence to do so? Buddying up with a friend to go to the gym or walking daily might be a great start! In fact, you can often ‘try before you buy’ for at least a week before joining a gym. The best thing about it? It has lots of classes to choose from, and often has child-minding facilities. Plus, you can make some new mama friends to up-the-ante on your social calendar - make this your new habit of happy!
physical activities you can try, to raise your mama-vibe
Keen to try a dance fitness program that makes you forget you are exercising? Shake off your funk and wake up your inner Beyonce by whirling, twirling, twerking, and unleashing your own personal feminine spark! From Zumba’s salsa moves, to street, jazz, ballet or Broadway styles, there are so many studios and gyms that have heaps of dance classes to offer daily! Not only does dance stretch your limbs, but it is also commonly known to be great for the workings of the brain. Overall, it makes you feel young + vibrant (and maybe a little uncoordinated) but hey, it’s all in the name of feel good fun!
Keen to don some ninja gloves, and punch and kick your way into oblivion? (Not I, not ever, you say?) Well, let us tell you an itty-bitty secret - there is nothing more satisfying than taking out your frustration as you sidekick to the sound of eye-popping house music blaring in the background. Whether its Body Combat, Kickboxing or Muay Thai you are after, get ready and get set to unleash your inner ninja mama with pride!
Want to dip your toes in and embody some Zen? Yoga involves intense elements ranging from static to flowing physical movement. It may take time to get going with this practice, and it also may require lots of patience, (but stay strong mama: and indulge in the only daily hour of peace and quiet you’re ever going to get for the next 20 years or so!).
Yoga is commonly known to connect you back to your mind, body, and soul’s awareness. It is mixed with breathing, balance, and strength. But mostly - yoga poses can invigorate your spirit, and connect your brain to a place of wisdom, centeredness, stillness, and … peacefulness!
As busy mums who are often caught up in the chaos of bending, sitting, and lifting to wrangle our children, reformer pilates, the latest gym-craze - is essential to nurturing our overly exhausted bodies: that may be in dire need of building core and lower back strength, especially when carrying the kids.
Laying on a flatbed teamed with resistance bands, reformer pilates takes you through ballet-based strength exercises that not only help you become stronger, but more improved: for functional movement out and about with the kids!
pillar 2: your emotional energy
Is your mind feeling frazzled and unbalanced due to a lack of sleep and the general stress and anxiety of motherhood mania? Are you spending more time over-thinking things, rather than just going with the flow? Maybe it’s time to fill your emotional cup with some mind-nourishing moments of tranquil serenity – so your thoughts can feel clearer, calmer, and refreshed. So, your head and your heart: can reconnect, rejuvenate, and restore you back into balance.
activities you can try, to settle your emotions
set aside some quiet time
Keen to get some calmness back into your life? Start by setting aside some quiet time away from the chaos of family life - to still in silence, self-reflect + focus on your thoughts. A 5am rise, before pickup, or before you go to sleep (after reading to the kids putting them all to bed) would be the optimal moments to set aside time to settle your emotions down.
So … let the flow begin!
Connect with your emotions by journaling your feelings down in a diary or notebook. The practice of writing your thoughts down will help clear them from your head, slow down your mind + relieve feelings of stress. The best time to do this: is early in the morning when your mind is fresh and alert, (before the littlies wake up, of course!) or before you go to bed, so your thoughts can be cleared out to calm + relax you for sleep.
Ever have those moments alone when you are driving, or in the shower; and suddenly, out-of-nowhere - a brilliant idea flows into your mind? Meditation is similar in practice: in that the very act of sitting in silence allows the spaces between our thoughts to open, thus allowing newer thoughts to sweep in - that we perhaps would not have noticed or paid attention to beforehand.
A great way to get started with meditation - is by slowing down and listening to a meditation app, podcast, or YouTube recording while you are alone. Find the one that resonates with you and play them while doing the housework, while making dinner, or while having a bath. In fact, there are so many meditations to choose from, depending on what your emotional needs are, that in no time at all, you should be embodying more inner peace in your life.
walking in nature
Another great way to slow down your mind to reconnect with your emotions is to surround yourself in nature: by walking along the beach with the kids in a pram, feeling the sun shines on your face while the kids play in the playground and the wind going through your hair. In fact, being in nature is known to be so therapeutic, that in Japan, walking in a forest and hugging trees, otherwise known as forest bathing - is known to be a go-to favourite pastime: to bring a sense of calm back into our minds and bodies!
pillar 3: your mental energy
Are you longing to have more ‘get-up-and-go’ in your life? You may feel it’s time to fill your mental cup with some monumental thoughts, self-belief + self-motivation – perhaps its time to boost your mental energy with a positive mindset - and move your life forwards with resilience and some inner strength?
activities you can try, to grow your positive mindset
start by … building some positivity
Keen to climb up the ladder of life and reach the peak of your potential? If so, make sure your mindset is in a great space before you start! Exploring the way you think, and whether you are thinking positively or negatively about yourself and your abilities. For example, do you have the confidence + skills to start tackling your goals, or do you need to build yourself up a little more so you can start actioning things out?
If you are not sure, let’s share some positive ways of thinking with you: so, you can surge forward with the right, go-getting mindset.
Let the soaring begin …
What kind of words do you say to yourself, daily? Do you talk to yourself with self-belief, compassion + kindness, or do you critique yourself harshly? Would you speak the same way to your best friend that you do to yourself? If not, maybe it’s time: to start harnessing some positive self-talk + think some kinder thoughts about yourself.
Reminding yourself that you are a kind and good person and recalling those strengths that make you unique not only helps rebuild your confidence; but teaches you the importance of your children being able to honour themselves as well. So remind them too that they are honest, brave, curious + adventurous too, so this vocabulary of values sticks in their minds as they grow.
think monumental thoughts
If we asked our kids to act like a statue, how would they look? Would they stand tall + still? Would they be brimming with confidence + strength? If so, then why not embody some of these qualities as well? Having monumental beliefs helps us stand taller + builds our own thinking system: to conquer our world with more tenacity and resilience. Great values for building our inner strength!
make the mirror your friend
A mirror is more than just a simple reflection. A mirror is honest. It helps us decide if we like ourselves, or if we don’t. Magically, mirrors also appear elsewhere too: at the gym; the hairdressers; and even in your car. They help us accept who we are. If it’s time to search for the vivacious, confident, happy, + positive person you used to be, then opt to make the mirror your friend once again!
learn to let go
Are you holding onto a negative person, memory, or situation, even though it fills you with a level of stress you simply don’t need? If so, it may be time to say goodbye to whatever and whoever is holding you back, to start caring for your family and those you love; and cultivate your own growth + wellbeing. Letting go relieves us with happiness and joy by letting go of those thoughts in our minds that no longer serve us. Having a conversation with a close friend or a recommended health professional, can often lead us to a well-deserved path: of letting go … for good!
build your awareness
Building awareness means observing your thoughts, feelings + sensations as life happens. Having more awareness connects us to who we really are. When we are more aware, we see life more clearly, which in turn helps build our confidence + self-esteem: from the inside out.
Ready to fill your tank with our 3 pillars of physical, mental + emotional wellbeing activities? Whether you choose to embody more clarity, positivity, or motivation – always remember that whichever one you choose: will have the potential to flourish outwards + onwards to those you love the most!
And always, always – if you aren’t sure about embarking on any new physical, mental, or emotional health regimen: ask a recommended health professional first!
Nicole Salinger is a copywriter at b.box, mental health writer + fellow mama-raiser of 4 grown humans. She is here to share the truth - and nothing but the truth – about the precious journey of Motherhood – and how to recover your sanity with children in tow!