LoveBites: 2 Easy Ways to Slow Down

“Sometimes you need to slow down to eventually go faster.” ~Robin Sharma

How do you slow down? What does that look like? When was the last time you actually did?

If it’s been a while, here are a couple of ways you can try to slow down today:

Start with the breath. Check in on your breathing. Is it shallow, quick, constricted, high in the chest? Sit comfortably. Try drawing the breath long and down into the bottom of your belly. Place your hand on your belly and breathe to expand from the bottom of the belly up. Drop your shoulders and exhale slowly, pulling the belly back to the spine as the breath pushes out, again from the bottom up. Repeat 7-8 times or for about a minute. Deep breathing helps tap into the nervous system and promote relaxation.

Check in on chewing. Do you tend to inhale food, rush through to do something else, chew-chew-swallow without really savouring or thinking about the food? Take a bite. Count how many times you can keep chewing before the instinct to swallow actually kicks in. For many that’s about 30 times. With your next bite chew that many times and enjoy the flavours in the food. Set down the fork between bites and even close your eyes for a moment. Chewing slowly and thoroughly helps activate digestion from the mouth down and promotes feeling full.

Even if you can slow nothing else down today, checking on breathing and chewing at least at meal times can still make a big difference in stress and energy levels throughout the day, which can translate to better moods and fewer cravings as the day goes on.

Give it a try!

LoveBites: Try Approving of Yourself

“You’ve been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” ~Louise Hay

Not sure where to start? Try remembering the best compliments you’ve ever received. Visualize what it was like when it was said to you.

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Now, if you downplayed or rejected it (“it was nothing” or “no I don’t” or “you’re just saying that”) at the time, or said anything along the lines of “thanks, BUT”… change the script. Imagine genuinely thanking that person for that compliment without taking anything away from it (“thanks, it was/I do/I am!”).

Now look yourself in the eye and repeat that compliment back to yourself.

Now imagine actively thinking that way about yourself, without waiting for someone else to tell you. “This outfit looks great on me. My eyes are stunning. I’m getting so strong. I rocked that. I have so many great ideas.”

You’ve got this!

LoveBites: Take Care of Yourself!

So often, I get wrapped up in taking care of other people, animals, projects… but not myself. “You can’t pour from an empty cup,” I say, but my own cup runs low. From time to time it helps to remind myself to refill! Here’s how you can refill your cup too: Continue reading “LoveBites: Take Care of Yourself!”

When You Haven’t Changed Anything… But Your Pants Don’t Fit

I’m no stranger to that struggle.

You’re positive that you’re not eating more food or “junkier” food but you’re still gaining weight. And you don’t think you just shrunk your clothes, are PMSing, or haven’t taken a good poop. How could this happen?

You’re not going crazy. You’re not alone. Continue reading “When You Haven’t Changed Anything… But Your Pants Don’t Fit”

LoveBites: Stress Management

You know that stress management is important for your health. But what does that really mean? What can you do to reduce stress day-to-day?

Find ways to manage and reduce stress that are also in line with keeping you healthy. Coping mechanisms that are fun while they’re happening but ultimately leave you hurting (e.g. the morning after, sure, but also cumulatively in the future) contribute to the stress on your body.

So what ARE some healthy ways?

✔ yoga and gentle movement
✔ meditation and visualization
✔ journaling
✔ making time for creative expression
✔ aromatherapy
✔ massage therapy
✔ warm baths with Epsom salts
✔ loving sex – both partnered and solo
✔ time with friends – but only if you’re not already feeling over-peopled
✔ mindful eating and drinking – taking time to savour the indulgence
✔ choosing more foods with high antioxidant content and anti-inflammatory properties on a daily basis – eat the rainbow!

There are many more healthy ways to manage stress. What are your favourites? What will you try?

Photo credit @wellnessstockshop