It’s a new year and you can just imagine the snow thawing, the ice melting (on your heart), and the promise of spring in every bird’s winter song. In the South these are romantic fantasies because you are more likely to see a tornado warning than a heavy snowfall, but the imagery of a spring thaw certainly feels relatable after facing winter and divorce. A new year might find you working through your first full year of divorced life, or it might find you facing divorce. Navigating the new is stressful. Well, life is stressful. Fortunately, there are ways to give your body and mind some rest. Here are five we recommend:
Yes, putting good food into your body affects how you feel, and how you cope with stress. You need energy. You need that overall feeling of well-being. You deserve it and your body will thank you.
Find an exercise or a routine you enjoy. No pain, no gain? Screw that. Enjoy using your body to the fullest. Find satisfaction in the movement, the adrenaline, the technique. You’ll feel great, look great, and be more likely to stick to the routine. Be like the French and find the pleasure in something, rather than always focusing on hard work. Bon.
While we’re discussing the French philosophy of finding pleasure in things, find something you simply enjoy. Taking time out to enjoy a stroll, a bowl of your favorite soup, the next big fight or game; it's important for de-stressing and helps maintain your ability to handle stress when it happens to creep in or bowl you over.
Let me break up the monotony of all those “Es” in the list. Quiet, you ask?
Quiet. Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Go for a solitary hike without your earbuds. Listen to nature and to whatever your inner self needs to talk about. It's in the quiet spaces where we grow and learn from ourselves and our surroundings.
Be sure to get enough sleep. Make sure it’s restful. I know there are circumstances where this is challenging, but mindfully evaluating your sleep patterns and making sure your body gets the rest it needs is important.
Zen out. Deep breath calms the central nervous system and when you calm yourself, your stress melts away. Maybe it doesn’t always melt, but breathing can help you more clearly balance all of your responsibilities.Try it.
Whatever the state of your relationship, we can all use the reminder to take care of our bodies and minds. External pressure is always there, but managing it is our choice. We might be too busy for all five at once, but even the busiest of us can take a moment to enjoy beauty or breathe deeply.
A new year is a new start. Begin 2020 by setting new priorities and making new goals. Caring for yourself, especially after something like divorce, is exactly what you need to stay strong and accomplish your dreams in 2020.