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Meditation Fairy

What Mom Stress May Look Like

What Mom Stress May Look Like

Being a mom is not easy! Sometimes we don’t realize that our bodies are under chronic stress. 

So look out for these symptoms: 

👉🏻 An “always feeling tired” feeling – or “mom fatigue”- if you are always tired – it is not normal – (always chat with your doctor first! But if nothing shows up) this is likely the result of stress messing up your sleep. This can lead to mom burnout and should not be taken lightly!

👉🏻 Zero patience with your kids – when you are under stress everything is a threat! Which means screaming kids also trigger your fight or flight response, usually meaning you lose your patience with ever minor annoyances. 

👉🏻 Feeling angry constantly – also known “mom rage”. If your stress reaction is to fight … now you know why you may feel angry all the time. 

👉🏻 Wishing the day away – you wake up and can’t wait for the day to end again – sound familiar? If your stress reaction is flight – this is probably why you wish you were anywhere else but where you are. 

👉🏻 Can’t think clearly – when we are under chronic stress, the connection with the decision making part of our brains is not as smooth, which is why sometimes (of a lot of the time you get “brain fog”). 

👉🏻 Digestion issues – when you are under stress and feel “threatened” it is not the time to digest! Bloating and constipation are most common while others can develop diarrhoea. 

Want to know about some easy techniques to relieve stress? Send me a DM @meditationfairy on Instagram and let’s chat! 👏🏻

The Part We Never Expect When We Teach Kids About Meditation and Mindfulness

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My eldest said this to me this week 😱. In the past this would’ve made me angrier (i.e. triggered me even more). This is the part we never expect when we teach kids about meditation and mindfulness… that THEY will be the ones calling us out when we are taking our emotions and frustrations out on them.

And if we are not ready for it, we end up even more upset and angry, over what is a very legitimate question.

In the past this type of comment or answer would make me immediately list our the reasons (i.e. excuses) about why I was saying it in an angry voice. Something like: he wasn’t listening or it was the 10th time I had asked him to do something.

But instead of answering I paused. I took a breath and thought “why am I saying this in an angry voice? Why am I upset?”

I find this kind of questioning helpful in calming down. It gives the logical part of my brain an opportunity to activate which means my amygdala can calm down (no need for fight, flight or freeze reactions) which means I feel less like I’m being attacked and more like what is happening and why am I having this reaction.

Even though it sounds like I would be silent there for several minutes, this all took place in the space of about 30 seconds.

I then said “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it to come out as an angry voice” and then continued the conversation with him.

Its inevitable that we will get angry, frustrated or upset with our kids. That as much as we try to do mindful, gentle, conscious parenting, we will raise our voice or speak in an “angry” tone. We are human and dealing with emotions is part of the territory.

But if we want to teach our kids to emotionally regulate themselves and learn how to process their own emotions, we need to do the work ourselves.

And remember, the moment we catch ourselves losing it or using our angry voices … OR if our kids call us out on it, it doesn’t mean we have to continue in the same way.

We can stop, take a breather, say sorry and start again.

It doesn’t make you look ‘weak’ as a parent, and it will show your child what emotional regulation looks like, so that they can in turn do it themselves.
 

You Don’t Have To Wait Until Your child Has Depression or Anxiety To Introduce Them to Meditation

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Unfortunately most of the parents that reach out to me are parents of kids who are already suffering from anxiety, depression or stress.

And It’s normal, their child is in pain and suffering, they want to help, I would do the same in their situation. who wouldn’t ?

What I would LOVE to see is parents coming to me even if their kids don’t have anxiety, depression or stress.

But let’s be realistic, when things are going well, we rarely think of prevention. We are busy with the day to day and keep our fingers crossed that everything will be plain sailing.

Until it isn’t.

I started a consistent meditation practice AFTER I started suffering from depression and burn out.

I wish I hadn’t. I wish I had had the tools to help me through when I needed it.

That’s the main reason why I decided to start teaching meditation to my then 4 yo. Because I realised just how important it was. Especially for highly sensitive children.

I know as Parents we want to give our kids the tools they will need as they grow up.

To deal with emotional ups and downs, the craziness of hormones, an ever changing world, unkind comments from strangers, and body image just to name a few.

The thing to remember is that Meditation is not a band-aid 🩹 or a pill to pop when you are feeling unwell.

It’s like a tool that you learn how to use and practice so that when that emotional blow arrives your child will know how to keep themselves from being blown away by the emotion.

Naming and becoming aware of emotions is just one of the many benefits that meditation can bring to kids, even if those kids are not anxious or stressed.

4 Ways To Reconnect With Your Kids When They Are Upset

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Here are 4 ways to reconnect with your kids when they are upset:

1️⃣ Ask if its ok to give them a hug (and then hold them until they let go!) – We always assume that people in pain want to be hugged. Sometimes our kids may just be plain angry (that doesn’t mean they are not hurting as well) and they don’t want to be touched. Ask first, 9 times out of 10 they will want a hug. The 10th time, say that the hug is still on offer if they want it later.

2️⃣ Sit with them in silence, let them feel your presence and support. – As parents we need to get comfortable with the uncomfortableness of silence and yucky emotions. Sometimes all it takes is being there sat next to them, hearing them crying it out. It makes them feel heard and seen and that goes a long way in making them feel safe. Once they feel safe, they will become calmer as well.

3️⃣ Ask if you can read them a book. – provided they are not crying their eyes at that moment, cuddling up and reading a book is a great way for them to be with you without having to talk to you. A soothing voice and familiar book can help them connect with feelings of calmness and it may encourage them to talk about how their feeling and whether you can help.

4️⃣ Let them know you are there if they want to talk and if they don’t go back to No 2 above! – sometimes kids (and even adults) don’t want to talk. Everyone processes hurt and anger differently, our most important job as parents is to hold the space for them to feel their feelings. But its also important for them to know that if they want to talk about it, you are there to listen. Remember no judgment and no finger pointing allowed! Let them talk and vent and listen – you will be surprised how much they share once they start.

I know that the hardest thing we have to do as parents is sometimes just being present when they are hurting. Sometimes they might be angry with you or with someone else but to anyone that knows seeing their little faces in tears is hard because as parents all we want to do is to make it ok. ❤️

5 Easy Steps To Start a Consistent Meditation Practice

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Starting to meditate doesn’t have to be difficult, but it’s easier if you have a plan. Here are 5 steps to start and stick to a meditation practice:

1️⃣ Schedule a specific time during the day to do it: I prefer early mornings, before the kids are awake and the day starts. I feel it sets me up for the day. But if you are waking up during the night or you are not a morning person, then before bed is my other go-to option. The kids are in bed and I can relax and prepare my body for a restful night.

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2️⃣Pick a space: anywhere you can sit down comfortably is good. Because 👏you👏don’t 👏need 👏a 👏meditation👏mat 👏. You can meditate on a chair, your sofa, your bed. Whatever is more comfortable where you can keep your back straight.

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3️⃣Choose a short guided meditation: Guided meditations are best for beginners and even non-beginners (I still love them!). You can relax and let yourself go into your meditation without “worrying” about the time. You can only dedicate 10 mins to your practice? That’s great a 10 minute guided meditation will keep you to that time. If you want to start with deep breaths and some music – go for it.

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4️⃣Use an Eyemask: Why do I recommend an eyemask and not a meditation mat? I think at the beginning an eyemask will help you relax and zone out more than a mat. An eyemask is the one thing I travel with everywhere, it can turn a bright room into a meditation zone in seconds .

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5️⃣Take 3 deep breaths (longer exhales) in gratitude before starting: think of this as your permission to relax and enjoy your meditation. Remember this time isn’t a chore or something you “have” to do. It’s a relaxing time you are gifting yourself. As you are breathing, smile thinking about how great it is to be able to take this time for you, how grateful you are for those moments. When you do this, you will be sending signals to your body to relax AND filling it with gratitude, which is THE best place to start your meditations.

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Are you struggling to start? Send me a DM on my Instagram account or Facebook Page, would love to help! ❤️

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