Happy Tuesday, everyone!
How is your week going so far? Mine has started quite well. Yesterday I attended a really good training on how to cope with stress. Why did I like it? Because it helped me realize that my main stressors aren’t at work but at home. Stressor can be a person, event, memory, environment or your particular life situation. And in my case it is the lack of sleep.
On one hand it is good to know that I don’t get worked up about work anymore. Since I reduced my working hours to 80%, all I worry about is finishing my tasks, catching my evening train and picking up Chloe-Sofia from kindergarten on time. You learn to prioritize better when you have less time and office schemes and politics lose their importance.
But back to my stressor. My real stress comes in the evening. Every night, when I lay down in bed, I can’t help but wonder: “How is it going to be tonight? Will I get some sleep? How many times will Chloe-Sofia wake up? Will she go back to sleep easily? Will I fall asleep after I feed her and put her back to bed?”
To put it simply, and that is what I learned yesterday- to simplify, instead of being in the here and now (focusing on falling asleep), I project into future.
The other morning I caught myself thinking: “I can’t do this anymore. I am exhausted. I just want to sleep.”
Again, I keep reliving the fact of not sleeping, thus giving it more importance. It makes me feel even more tired than I really am. And affects how I act in the morning which consists of:
• running around like a headless chicken,
• my husband reminding me that I have 2 minutes to catch the train,
• sprinting to the train stop.
How stressful is that? Can you believe that I was not aware of that? That’s when the mindfulness comes in. If you stop and take several deep breaths, you become aware of the “gap”. What do I mean by that? The space between our thoughts and reactions.
When my usual morning thoughts came today, I let them be. I got ready for work, prepared clothes and milk bottles for Chloe-Sofia (my husband takes her to kindergarten in the morning). And yes, I still ran after the train. BUT, I did not relive the memory of waking up at 4am and not being able to fall asleep. And I did not lash out at my husband out of tiredness.
Do I feel fresh and full of energy? No, I feel OK, relaxed and calm. I can face the day feeling lighter and happier. And that is what matters.
How do you deal with stress?
American Vintage Grey maxi-dress (budget, splurge), Panama Hat from Madrid (budget), Bucherer bracelet, handmade red choker (I like this one a lot), sunglasses by Polaroid (splurge, budget) and Dorothy Perkins snake print heels(splurge).
Photos by Alexander Ramp