We know that the journey of motherhood is filled with ups and downs, and sometimes it can lead to feelings of dysregulation – that overwhelming sensation of anxiety, chronic stress, depression, or burnout. It’s a lot to handle, and we often face situations that can exacerbate these feelings. But here’s the good news: there are things we can control to make it better.
- High-Intensity Exercise: While intense workouts like Cross-fit, HIT, or hot yoga might sound tempting, they can add physical stress to our already stressed bodies. These activities activate our sympathetic nervous system, responsible for the fight-or-flight response. So, when we’re already dysregulated, it takes longer for our bodies to recover. Opt for gentler, more soothing exercises to help you regulate and heal.
- Caffeine, Alcohol, or Other Substances: These substances artificially manipulate our nervous system, causing fluctuations that can worsen our stress levels. Caffeine, in particular, triggers stress responses in our bodies. It’s essential to be mindful of our consumption and its impact on our well-being.
- Fasting/Skipping Meals: Skipping meals or fasting can stress our bodies further by increasing cortisol production, the stress hormone. Our dysregulated nervous systems need consistency, nourishment, and hydration. So, prioritize regular, balanced meals to support your healing process.
- Consuming Stressful Content: Constant exposure to news, people, or social media that stress you out can take a toll on your mental health. Try starting your day and ending it screen-free. This can help create a calmer, more peaceful atmosphere for your well-being.
When you’re feeling dysregulated (or even when you’re not), take a moment to reflect:
- What Kind of Movement Helps You Feel Calm?: Gentle walks, stretching, or yoga can do wonders for your state of mind.
- What Food/Drinks Help You Feel Calm?: Nutrient-rich, soothing foods and herbal teas can be your allies in finding balance.
- What Animals or Pets Help You Feel Calm?: Spending time with your furry friends can bring a sense of tranquility.
- What Social Media Accounts (If Any) Help You Feel Calm?: Curate your online space with content that uplifts and relaxes you.
- What People and Environments Help You Feel Calm?: Surround yourself with supportive individuals and create calming spaces.
By asking yourself these questions, you can identify what nurtures your well-being. Adjust your life to prioritize these calming elements as best you can. Remember, you’re not alone in this journey, and taking care of yourself is a precious gift to both you and your loved ones. Embrace the path to healing and self-care.
Have a question you’d love Michelle to answer on the podcast? “Ask Michelle a Question.” Click this link, record your message, hit send, and I’ll answer it in a future episode!