Tuesday, April 15, 2014


I'm having a lot of trouble trying to relax.

Lately I've been just completely overwhelmed with the stress of working and managing two kids. My mind is always whirling with all the things I need to do. Feels a bit like the entire universe rests on my shoulders. It doesn't help that when I'm going to the bathroom there's usually somebody knocking on the door within 30 seconds asking when I'm coming out.

It's stressful.

For that reason I've really been trying hard to think of ways to relax. I know meditation would help me but it's just very hard to do. I can't seem to turn my brain off. Plus there isn't that much time to do it.

What are ways in which you relax?


  1. I know you mentioned that you don't exercise, but thats a big one for me. Yes, I hate it AT THE TIME, but I realize I do feel less stressed on days when I've worked out. I also love to read in the evenings. Oh and wine. Wine helps.

  2. Exercise helps a lot. Also, I've found that while I usually don't have time to do 30 minutes of meditation, I do have time to do the 20 breaths exercise. See below:


    20 breaths is also helpful to me when I am having trouble falling asleep.

    I also like reading. And TV.

    Sometimes keeping lists helps me feel like I have more control over things, and enables me to actively decide that some things don't really need to get done NOW.

  3. Crosswords, reading, exercise. Time with friends - absolutely crucial for me. Sex. Also crucial. And I find that keeping some level of order in my environment helps - if I can spend some time corralling the chaos, getting things filed and the piles of laundry put away, I feel much calmer. I used to feel resentful that I had to spend my "relaxing time" doing housework. Now I see it as an investment in my peace of mind. It's still plenty messy around here, since I tend to choose the crosswords and reading over the tidying. Baby steps.

  4. Ha ha I agree with Jay above sex is crucial, although it might not have occured to me to put in on the list until I read it. Biking. Reading. Wine. Seems I have nothing to add here. But I will add that there are stretches in my life where I don't feel I have enough time for relaxing and my head goes crazy like yours. So even though I know what helps, I can't always find the time. Those times are less often as my kids grow older.

  5. I'm not a mom (yet) but I blog about this topic a lot. I am partial to journaling and walking. Both can be done in short periods of time. Play around with different things to find out what works for you!

  6. You can be mindful in anything that you do. I read this article a while ago (http://tinybuddha.com/blog/mindfulness-in-everyday-tasks-5-ways-chores-can-make-you-happier/) - try to be aware of the moment, even if it is a simple matter of doing the dishes. Choose one task that you don't HATE, and make that your me time. You won't feel guilty, because you're still being productive, but you really need to pay attention to the task at hand!

  7. @Jay, your comment, "I used to feel resentful that I had to spend my 'relaxing time' doing housework. Now I see it as an investment in my peace of mind." really hit the nail on the head. I can't even sit down to study until my environment is peaceful.
    How do I relax? I have to have periods of quiet where I turn my brain completely off. Like watching a dumb movie with my kids (Ernest Goes to Camp comes to mind) or making smores over a fire in the yard or something like that. I have six kids (three are grown), and I'm still in undergrad, so I can't imagine once I get out of med school and balancing a career. But that's what works for right now.

  8. Music helps too. Invest in an mp3 player if you don't have one and as stated before, exercising - just walking even might help.

  9. Laughing and being silly with my son. Exercising. Going out for amazing food and wine with my husband (baby at home with a babysitter).


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