Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I don't want to cheat off your test. I just need some help.

I was a late bloomer. I didn't get any teeth until well after my first birthday. I didn't get my driver's license until a whole month after I turned 16. And I won't tell you how old I was when I lost my virginity. My parents read this blog, after all.

(Oh, Mom? Dad? I'm totally saving myself for marriage. If you need me, I'll be at church. Or the library.)

So, sometimes it takes me a while to figure things out. I am cautious. And sort of clueless.

My latest adventure in delayed development?

I'm realizing that a) I need to take better care of myself; b) It's ok to need time to recoup and oh yes, I'm one of those people who needs this time; and c) A balanced approach to stress doesn't mean gogogogogogo, have a few nights of falling asleep at 8, then gogogogogogo again.

Like I said, I'm a little slow on the uptake. And I'm realizing that I don't know how to find that middle ground between stressed and hitting the wall. I don't know how to decelerate.

So. I need your help.

How are you kind to yourself? What do you do to keep things at an even keel in your world? What are your favorite stress relievers?

I'll even go first. Having dogs is sort of a built-in "be kind to Cha Cha" feature. Foxie Doxie and Lil' Frankfurter think I'm awesome, even when I'm not. Walking them is a great stress reliever. However, as I'm looking for ways to manage stress, I have to realize that more dogs do not equal less stress. Actually, I think more dogs equal collecting newspapers and becoming That Lady on Hoarders.

And even though that show always compels me to clean, becoming That Lady that isn't a calming thought. So. What's your favorite way to find a little balance in your hectic day?


calista said...

Step 1 - buy good groceries.
Step 2 - Eat those groceries. I find that I feel much better about everything when I eat well, from the way my life is going to the way my body feels to PMS symptoms.

Step 3 - Exercise at least 30 minutes every day. There is no need to kill yourself on the elliptical machine of death. Course, you already get some stress relief by walking your doggies, so step 3 is covered.

Step 4 - Do at least one thing, every day, that you love. Take the time to do that one little thing that makes your heart go pitter pat.

Okay. That should help, I hope :)

Patti said...

You know what I am going to say :-)
Give yourself a little self care every day. It can be a treat, a hot bath, a 10 minute meditation or a yoga class. (We can help you fix your shoulder!) (we can)

~annie said...

Bubble baths with a good book to read and something nice to drink.

Anonymous said...

You can practice it when you get home from the library. heh.

Angie said...

This is great! We all need help on this and I love the other comments. My contribution:
1) Lower your standards. I mean not on everything or even the important things, but accept that not all things need to be done to A+ level.
2) Be a participator in some things. It's nice to have a few areas of your life you aren't the leader and no one depends deeply on you. For me that's yoga class (if I have to skip no one is missing a center fielder and I only hurt myself = less guilt) and church (no leading, no volunteering, just mostly attending, dropping some money and a recipe contribution to the cookbook).
3) I try to always work from home the day after a business trip. Since the flights from NY notoriously get in after midnight, this allows me to sleep an extra half hour instead of commuting and I start work in my pajamas with a lunchbreak that includes showering, dressing and unpacking the suitcase. It is a great way to reconnect with the home life after a few days away.
4) Girlfriends. Book club. And reading blogs. Makes me feel not so alone in stressing about all this stuff to know others do to.
5) I started prescribing myself 30 minutes of comedy at night. I end my day laughing at Jon Stewart or Kathy Griffin instead of making long stressful to-do lists or paying bills.

Mary @ Giving Up On Perfect said...

Wish I had an answer for you. But what I do is not what I should do, ya know? What I do is collapse on the couch and watch TV or read a book or both. I know that living in a clean, organized house makes me feel so much better about life. But getting to that clean, organized state? Just is not happening these days...

Gretchen Hembree said...

I don't think I have been on an even keel in over five years. I have been struggling with this myself over the past week.

Here is what I have come up with so far...(BTW, I love all the other answers, especially Angie's #1. I need to take that advice.)

1) I exercise for 40 minutes three days a week. It is not as much as it could or should be, but I have noticed an improvement since I have started.
2) I can only do one thing at a time. While I like to consider myself a master multi-tasker, in reality I can only conquer one mountain at a time. I am learning that if I just focus on a small one, it will be behind me and I can move on. If I just take a bit off each pile, I still have 20 piles, only smaller.
3) I am learning to lean on others. This will be a big lesson. Ryan claims I act like I carry the weight of the world and I feel like I do. I am responsible for really four lives and a dog. This can be daunting. I want to learn to ask for help.

Let's work on this together!

itsjustme said...

Ok, well, I walk the dogs, but since it is more of a them dragging me behind, not sure that gives me balance.

However, I am ALL OVER the bubble bath, drink in hand thing. LOVE THAT.

My whole life has gone to hell at the moment, so not sure I should be giving this kind of advice, but, what the hell.

hope505 said...

I have a Jacuzzi brand jetted tub...that's all I'm gonna say on that topic.
* : )
Also: I try to be consistent in my sleep habits. I'm one of those people who likes to get 8 hours every night! Sleep is the great regenerator. With pets, it can be even better! I used to just sleep in a Tshirt and underwear, but I have since invested in some pajamas and another little thing called "loungewear". Yeah, it's for times when you're at home, doing whatever you want, but don't feel like getting fully dressed, and it won't hurt to fall asleep in. And cute. Loungewear and PJ's and nighties should be pleasing to the eye AND comfortable. Do you need to go shopping for some new PJ's and/or LOUNGEWEAR? I give you permission!
* : D

Iron Needles said...

It evolves, and I try to be flexible with what I need.

Exercise, and taking care of myself (nutrition & rest), not obsessing about either. Creative outlet. But sometimes there has to be some cereal for supper and time on the couch, veggin'.

Also book time. I hear time with people is good. I try to connect. Then I have to rest up. Not such a people person am I. Perhaps just selective...