wellness bloggers

How to stay focused on wellness when life is hectic

By Dannielle Archer

As modern day women, we can all relate - juggling a career, kids, housework and a relationship is a tough gig!  In the midst of the day to day chaos, it’s easy to forget to take care of yourself. 

The thing is, when we’re not taking care of ourselves we actually become less efficient at juggling all those elements of our lives.  One of my favourite sayings is from Eleanor Brown: “You cannot serve from an empty vessel.”  To be truly present in each and every moment, and to serve those around you (whether at work or at home) you need to have ‘filled’ yourself up with all the essential ingredients for wellness: nutritious food, physical movement, sleep, love, and joy.  How do you manage this when you’ve got 2 weeks worth of washing to catch up on and you’re running on coffee to keep you going?  Read on for a few of my favourite ways to stay healthy when life just won’t slow down.

Put the kids to bed earlier

Are you still wrangling your kids into bed at 10pm?  Bed time is often such a stressful time for so many parents, and stress is the last thing you need at the end of your day.  In fact, stress before you go to bed will affect your entire nights’ sleep!  Children need sleep and they need an earlier bedtime than their parents.  Don’t think you’re doing them a favour by giving in to their tantrums and tears - read them a story and leave them to go to sleep.  I know it’s not easy, but it’s a step you need to take to reclaim your own health and energy!

Change the way you drive

Here’s a great thought - what if you left just 3 minutes earlier each morning, and you could relax in the car on the way to work/school/child care/wherever.  Imagine not holding every muscle in your body tense while you drive!  What a nice start to your day.  Just 3 minutes earlier than usual, and you can drive knowing that you have enough time to get there on time no matter how many red lights you get.  

Another tip for driving - listen to music that relaxes and soothes you.  Studies have shown that loud, fast music makes you drive faster, increases your heart rate and heightens your nervous system (in other words, it’s kind of stressful to your body!).  If you’re anything like most mums, you spend all day in a stressful state, so put on some calming music, leave 3 minutes earlier, and make your drives a time for you to wind down and breathe.

Try a smart wake-up alarm

Have you heard of those cool alarms that wake you up when you’re in your lightest phase of sleep?  When you’re asleep there’s a few different cycles you go through, some of them are deeper sleep than others. Your lightest sleep cycle is called Phase I, and there are some alarm clocks that are able to analyse your breathing pattern to determine which phase of sleep you are in, and wake you up at the best time - usually Phase I.  Have you every noticed that some days you wake up gently and quite easily, whilst other mornings you feel like you’ve been hit by a truck when your alarm goes off in the morning?  Try a smart alarm and you can avoid those ‘hit by a truck’ mornings.  The alarm clocks are also available as smartphone apps, just search in the app store. (PS. Make sure your phone is set to flight mode if you’re sleeping with in under your pillow, you don’t want to be exposed to high levels of radiation all night.)  A good start to the day usually brings a good day!

Cook and freeze in advance

Cooking large portions and storing in the freezer is the oldest trick in the book, but it’s a really great way to ensure that you always have something quick and healthy on hand.  Don’t know if you’ll find the time to have a cooking day to freeze a whole lot of meals?  Try cooking a little extra each night at dinner time and freeze the leftovers.  This saves you a heap of time and also means that you’ll have a variety of different meals in the freezer to defrost and reheat on those nights you just can’t bear the thought of preparing dinner from scratch.  Being prepared means you’re less likely to rely on take-away foods.

Utilise the benefits of superfood powders

A superfood powder, I hear you say?  What on earth is that?  Basically, it’s a cheats way of getting a whole lot of essential vitamins and minerals into your body easily and quickly.  My favourite brand is Vital Greens, but there are plenty of different ones out there.  You can get greens-based powders, or even beetroot-based or fruit-based!  Don’t be afraid to give them to your kids, too.  By having a dose of superfood powder in the morning, you know that no matter what happens during the day at mealtimes, you’ve had a little boost of nutrition to start you day off right.  With soil depletion a real issue in agriculture and the uncertainty over how long fruit and veg are stored for before you buy it, the nutritional content of much of what we eat is significantly lower than what it was 20, 30 or 40 years ago.  Superfoods powders are not to be relied on as your only source of nutrition, but they’re a great way to add extra goodness to your day.  You may find that you have more energy, better moods and clearer skin with regular intake of your superfoods, too! 

Move with your kids

Don’t have time to exercise?  Exercise with your kids.  Go to the park and practice soccer with them.  Wash the car together or go out and walk the dog.  Did you know just 15 minutes of exercise each day significantly reduces your risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, and many other chronic diseases?  Physical activity is also a great way to reduce stress and low blood pressure.  Don’t wait for half an hour of free time to magically appear so that you can go for a walk - you have to make time to exercise and move your body!

Make your health a priority!

Ultimately, you need to make the decision to make your health a priority.  Do you want to be there to watch your children grow up, get married, and have children of their own?  Do you want to be fit and healthy enough to play with your grandchildren and enjoy every moment with them?  Don’t wait until your 50s or 60s to start thinking about health and looking after yourself.  Everything that you do each and every day is paving the way to your future health (or lack of).  Be a role model for your children and teach them how important their health is by making your health a priority.  And remember, you cannot serve from an empty vessel.  When you take care of yourself, you’ll find that you have more energy and clarity of mind, and suddenly everything else that you are juggling doesn’t seem so hard.

Dannielle Archer is a qualified naturopath and passionate blogger who lives in Adelaide, Australia.  Her website, Little Miss Moderation teaches people all around the world about the importance of maintaining a healthy relationship with their health and the food they eat.  You can follow Little Miss Moderation on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.  Subscribe to LMM for yummy recipes and all the latest blog posts!

5 Ways To Stay Fit, Focused And Healthy While Blogging

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By Jenna Black

If you’re a blogger, you’re more than likely a busy, busy gal or guy! Us bloggers can find ourselves working a ‘day job’ while we pursue our dream career on the sideline. We stay up late writing our blog posts, we shoot our Instagram posts before rushing to work late and we wake up during the night with a million ideas running through our heads that simply can’t wait until the morning (anyone else reached for their phone at 2am to write down a reminder for the next day?!)

Blogging can be a lot of work! But often, we let the stress and crazy lifestyle affect our health and our focus. It’s so easy to get caught up in the whirlwind but this can lead to neglecting our health and losing out on beauty sleep (no thanks!).

So, how can you change your lifestyle to work with your busy blogging schedule, rather than against it? After blogging for a few years, I’ve nailed my top 5 tips to help you stay fit, focused and healthy, no matter how busy you are!

Let’s dive in!

1. Create a morning ritual
Are your mornings rushed and crazy? I feel ya! I used to have that same experience before I came across the concept of a morning ritual. A morning ritual is a simple set of actions that you practice each morning before you start your work day. These actions are designed to boost your health, clear your mind and drive your focus.

My personal morning ritual includes a short meditation upon waking, a workout session, a nourishing meal and some quiet time to jot down my daily to do list and get clear on what I want to achieve that day. I do this all before checking emails or social media. It may sound like a lot initially but this will quickly become a habitual practice that will help you gain clarity, focus and extra drive to kick goals that day!

2. Eat clean and green
Do you reach for that cookie or chocolate at about 3pm each day? When we’re busy and stressed we tend to compensate with sugary or processed comfort foods. It’s natural to want to do this! But that sugar hit is only doing you damage and sending your insulin and adrenal levels into mayhem.

If focus and clarity is one of your blogging goals, I encourage you to eat a whole food diet with plenty of fresh leafy greens. This is going to drastically improve your concentration, mood and drive throughout the day (no sugar crashes included!)

One of the best ways to get started with cleaning up your diet is by removing any packaged or processed foods. Simply eat healthy whole foods with ingredients that you can understand! You’ll feel the difference in no time.

3. Savour your sleep
Sleep really is Queen. There is a reason beauty sleep has that title, because our cells literally regenerate when we sleep. Getting a solid 8 – 9 hours a night is going to be crucial for you to stay focused and driven the next day.

If you struggle to get a solid amount of sleep, start by winding down earlier each night. Turn off electronics an hour before bed and don’t eat too late at night. Run a bath or do some gentle meditation and quietly wind down.

If your mind is rushing with ideas and everything you need to do tomorrow, set time aside in the evening to write down your to do list and get everything on paper. Place it away and make a promise to yourself that you’ll deal with it tomorrow. Nighttime is your time to relax, chill and get some beauty sleep!

4. Work it out
Have you ever used the excuse that you’re ‘too busy to work out?’ I used to tell myself that and I’d skip my morning workout. But the reality is, we all have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyonce, so we definitely have time to fit in exercise!

Here’s my suggestion for you if you’re super busy; simply aim for a quick 20 – 30 minute session that includes high intensity intervals. This can be done from your lounge room if you don’t have gym or park access. Include a range of bodyweight exercises like planks, star jumps and squats to get a fast and effective workout in!

Daily exercise is amazing for your body, mind and soul. It’s going to help take your blogging efforts from so-so to super!

5. Nourish your mind + soul
My final tip for you is to take time for yourself. You may have a million things to do and your schedule may feel a bit crazy and overwhelming, but take time for yourself each day (even 5 minutes) to allow your mind and soul to reset. Self care doesn’t have to mean an hour long massage (although that wouldn’t be all that bad), you can find some simple daily rituals that will nourish and cleanse you.

Try dry body brushing, a light meditation or just grab a great book and nestle into a cosy corner. Find something that makes you feel alive and nourished and practice it daily!

What’s your tip for living a fit, focused and healthy life as a busy blogger? I’d love to hear from you!

Jenna is a health coach, writer and freedom seeker. She blogs at holistchic, where she helps women create chic, healthy lifestyles. Jenna’s 6 week health coaching program, ELEVATE, helps women to nourish their bodies, boost their confidence and create a life they love. 

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