There are some easy ways to get rid of (or at least lighten) the growing collection of stress-inducing fringe that buries us.
5 practical things to do once a week
1. Have a 'lie-in' one morning a week
I have mine on Saturdays. I understand that single-parents may find it difficult to have a lie-in, especially if they've got very young kids. If this isn't possible, perhaps you can seek the help of grand parents or friends. Your parents can have the (young) kids on Friday nights to give you a well-deserved break.
If you live far from parents and siblings who could help you in this way, suggest to a friend (who has kids the same age as yours) to do an alternate week-end swap. You have her kids and yours on one week-end and she does the same for you the next. This feeling of not having to jump out of bed first thing, 7 days a week gives you something 'stress-free' to look forward to and lifts your spirits for (at least) one part of the week. It makes a big difference in the level of your every-day stress levels.
2. Have an email-free, blog-free, Internet-free day
If you can't make it the entire day without turning your computer on, start with Sunday mornings only, then build up. You probably don't notice how compelling your urge is to get on the Internet. Your 'Facebook' (and who's been on while you were asleep) is probably the first thing you think about each day. Does your laptop sit on your lap more than your kids do? Do you say more words to your online friends than you do to your spouse?
You're barraged with news, messages and other things that take your attention away from your home, your kids, and the 'flesh and blood' people around you. Stop for a minute, remove yourself from the house, go visit a friend, go for a walk, take your kids for a walk or to a free park/aquarium/museum etc. Spend time doing 'real' things with 'real' people. Sit by a pond or even watch a movie. The Internet, emails etc are added stress we put on ourselves. We should at least be free of them once in every 7 days.
3. Do some exercise
Anything will do. Walking and swimming are two of the best exercises we can get. Walking costs nothing. If you're a member of your municipal pool, swimming can cost you very little. Ideally, exercise should be done at least 3 times a week for 20 minutes or so. Many of us don't give ourselves enough time to get this much. Combine your fun, your family, your friends and your 'me' time with some activity. Just going for a family walk will kill 2 birds with one stone.
4. Clean your house
Living in filth brings anyone down. Your family members are more susceptible to diseases and illnesses. You feel down and agitated too. Reserve time in every week to clean your home, open some of your windows (even for just one hour). I leave my bedroom window a crack open, for about 3 hours a day in the winter time. In summer, I leave it opened for most of the day. I do the same for the kids' bedrooms as well, especially my asthmatic daughter's. Let the fresh air in. Don't encourage and enable damp spots and mould to grow in dark corners of your home.
5. Have a vegetarian day
...Or at least a pescatarian day. Meat is good for you. For those of us who have a hard time storing up iron, meat is one of the fastest ways in doing so. However, our digestive systems find some things harder to digest and process than others. Meat is one of the former. Vegetables and most fruit are easy on the digestive system. They give our bodies a break and a day of rest to naturally detox and prepare for another few days of eating meats.
Drink lots of water on your chosen day. If you smoke, cut down or cut out just for this day. Detoxify, regenerate and relax your body, and enable it to calm down and re-coup for the battering it normally has for 6 days in a row.
Do all of these once a week to de-stress and regenerate for the busy lives we have. If you like this article please share it on your favourite networking sites. Thank you.
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