Your Path to Balance & Bliss
10 easy ways to boost health, mind and spirit – using your personal toolbox
Jean Edelman: Great to be with you this week. This week I want to go back and really look at our toolbox. I want to go over some things because it’s the end of the year. I think it’s been a reflective year for us. And let’s just go over our tools and our toolbox because I feel like more and more each day, we really need to reach into our toolbox to manage what’s going on And having these tools at hand when we need them is so helpful. It’s like creating a muscle memory. So let’s sharpen our tools a bit as we move into this super busy part of the year so that we have a little bit more grace and ease. Okay. You ready?
The first thing is that let’s put on a happy face, because smiling actually triggers our brain to improve our mood. We may not truly be feeling it, but when we smile during a stressful moment, we can actually lower our heart rate. And this can help us figure out what our next move is. So remember our smile.
The second is to ground ourselves. It’s really a nice way throughout the day to take moments to ground ourselves. And how do we do that? Well, you don’t really have to find a quiet spot, but if you do find a quiet moment, maybe you’re standing by the sink or maybe you’re standing brushing your teeth. While you’re standing, firmly plant your feet on the ground. Take some nice deep breaths and picture roots coming from your feet into the earth. Breathe. Feel connected to our body. And when we’re done, put our hands over our heart for a breath. Have gratitude for these moments that we feel connected and then take these feelings into the day. And when we’re outside, that’s our best time to get grounded and feel wonderful connection to the earth and a wonderful way to refresh ourselves. But this grounding can be any moment, anywhere, just standing, having that visualization while taking some deep breaths. Because as we’re moving through our day – say we’re going into some meetings or we’re having some interactions with folks – when we’re grounded, we’re more aligned and more authentic. And I think we’ll feel better with ourselves and with our outcome in our day. So remember to ground ourselves.
The third is to actually let our mind wander. We can have our favorite spot. We can be sipping on a cup of tea. We can have pen and paper, crayon and paper. But any time we can sit and allow our thoughts to flow freely. This is a wonderful opportunity to open up some creativity, to just draw or doodle anything that comes to mind. No judgment, just flow, and maybe just write down some stuff that no longer serves us. But this wander time, this creativity time, this doodle time, this is really important for our brain to just kind of stop and refresh and just have a moment. So get those crayons out. That could be a ton of fun.
Number four is let’s continue to let go of our past. Do we find ourselves reliving rethinking moments? Do our minds just spin in circles and circles? We know how draining this energy can be, and it also can be hard to forgive and move on. But you know what? First, let’s forgive ourselves and then let’s forgive others. And then let’s move on, because life is about moving forward, that constant movement forward. And we don’t need these anchors in our life anymore. And the past is an anchor because we are really only about now and about moving into the future. And there’s tremendous freedom in letting go. And so let’s move on from our past.
Number five is to exhale. Let’s practice an elongated exhale. Because you know what? This sparks our parasympathetic nervous system, which slows down our heart. When we set an intention of moving stale, heavy energy out, we will feel much better and much lighter. And so, yeah, we’re breathing during the day, but maybe just take a couple moments to do an exhale for 5 or 6 or 8 or 10 counts and try to bring our parasympathetic nervous system into play because we can use some moments of relaxation and that’s the best way to bring it.
Number six is salt. Let’s remember our warm soak with our dead sea salts. It is so relaxing, especially after a very emotional day, just soaking in that water and just letting it all go. And when we put the water down the drain, so goes the day, so goes our emotions. Man, oh, man. Wonderful, wonderful self-care.
Tool number seven. Now that we’re in the cooler months, just a reminder to keep our hands warm when we’re locked in fear and anxiety or we are nervous. Our system directs our blood to the core of our body because we are in this fight or flight mode and our body wants to protect itself, which results in cold hands. So if we can warm our hands a little bit, we can signal our nervous system and tell our body that everything’s okay and that we can calm down. So how do we warm our hands? Well, maybe just running them under some warm water or just holding them and rubbing them together. But we want to remember that in super stressful moments, our core is protecting us and to try to warm up our hands.
Number eight is to give ourselves a hug. When negativity enters our day, our brain is sending signals to increase our blood pressure and we raise our adrenaline on our cortisol levels. But if we can physically wrap our arms around ourselves and give ourselves a hug, we release oxytocin and other biochemicals that make us feel better about ourselves. Remember this year we talked about our chakras and we talked about our energetic fields. And so when negativity enters these fields, just give ourselves a hug and it’s okay.
Number nine is to take a tech break. Come on, take some moments. Take a walk. Turn it off, tune out. Just get away from it all. We won’t miss a thing for the few 10 or 15 or 30 minutes that we get away from our technology and to yoga poses.
Ten is to get our legs up. It’s called legs up wall pose. And we’re basically sitting against the wall and we’re putting our legs up on the wall. This is a tremendous for our nervous system. This relieves fatigue, nourishes our immune system and also nourishes our lymphatic system. It moves the fluid because of the gravity. And we’re also bathing our brain with a fresh supply of blood. I highly recommend you try this at the end of the day. This is a wonderful pose and a really nice pose before sleep. And then there’s the Child’s Pose, a wonderful restorative pose, which really calms us after a stressful day. These we can do at any time during the day, legs up on the wall and a child’s pose.
So those are just ten little reminders of some tools we can have for our day or our week. So our action item is to take one of these and practice; practice and start our muscle memory from our toolbox. Because when we practice, we can just pull it out whenever we need it.
And so my word of the week is simple. It’s Tool.
The T is for Time. Take the time. Take the time for ourselves. We need to restore or refresh and rejuvenate ourselves. It’s so important to be the best version of ourselves. We need to take the time.
The O is for Oasis, a place of calm amid chaos. This is what we want. We don’t want to get pulled into the fray. We want to preserve our energy. Remember, we learned about our energy fields, and the only way to really care for our energy fields is really to care for our emotions. And so we don’t want to get pulled around by everything and everyone that’s just going nuts around us.
The O is for Open, to be accessible, clear and uncovered. We need to be open and we need this to move in our direction of health, being open to new ideas to something different. And remember our wabi sabi because nothing’s perfect, nothing’s complete and nothing’s permanent. So just moving in the direction of health is good. One step at a time. Baby steps. And before you know it, we’ll have all our moments of balance and peace until we don’t. And then we can start over again.
And the L is for Love. To care deeply and feel passion. And our body, ourselves, our emotions. That’s what we need to love. We need to love ourselves. So have a wonderful week, everybody, and practice your tools.