10 minute morning rituals to start your day

For many years my morning routine was non existent. I would go to bed with great intentions of rising with the sun, only to hit the snooze button multiple times and struggle to get out of bed. Then when I’d finally be ready to wake up, I’d lie in bed glued to my phone scrolling through Facebook, Instagram and checking my three email accounts (yes I know..). Then I’d leave myself just enough time to have a quick shower and get myself ready before racing out the door and straight to work. I’d work all day (often not taking a lunch break) finish work in the dark and then make my way home to start the whole cycle again….

I bet this story sounds all too familiar for many of us. It’s often the reality of juggling a busy working life! 

Somewhere in that vicious cycle, I found myself becoming very envious of all the people I was following on Instagram. They were practicing these beautiful ‘morning routines’. Down at the beach, doing yoga, walking in nature, sipping on juices and the general feel was #happiness. 

This was about this time that I had started my own wellness journey, and knew that I needed to start prioritising some of my day for ME. Not just letting myself be dragged into a unhealthy cycle of sleeping in, checking social media, rushing to work, working and then coming home to start it all again. But I knew my routine wasn’t going to look like the ones I saw on Instagram. Heck if I wanted to get to the beach and be in the office by 8:30am I’d be up at 4:30am….NO WAY! 

So I thought about what I could do and how I could make a beautiful morning routine work for me, and my life? I started very SLOWLY, and I tried lots of different things trying to find something that would stick. It changed with the seasons, it looked COMPLETELY different after I has a baby but above everything else, every obstacle that came my way I showed up and committed myself to giving myself that small window of time EVERYDAY.

I speak from experience when I say that carving out a morning routine has had a significant impact on my overall health and wellbeing. Not only do I feel less stressed and anxious about the day ahead, but I have a sense of calm about how I go about my morning. It affects every aspect of my life, from my mood to my relationship to how I go about my day.

Remember that a morning ritual doesn’t have to take up a lot of time (5-10 minutes will work perfectly). The thing is to do it each morning first thing when you wake up. No distractions, no scrolling through Facebook. 10 minutes of uninterrupted YOU time! Here are some of my favourite 10 minute morning rituals for beginning your day with positive energy, clarity and a sense of calm.

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Sydney Workshop – Let’s get REAL about health!

 

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It is with absolute excitement that I share my upcoming workshop ‘Let’s get REAL about health!’. 

An honest conversation that I’ll be facilitating with fellow health and wellness coach Frances Clark from Lovennourish.

During this workshop we’ll strip back the noise and confusion out there in the media around ‘what is healthy’, and get to the bottom of what this looks and feels like for YOU. READ MORE

It's time to drop the food guilt By The Nourishing Space

It’s time to drop the food guilt

Ok confession time, hands up who indulged over the break?? Double hands up over here!! I had easter eggs, champagne, hot cross buns, cheese platters and pizza… Not a gluten free, sugar free, dairy free mouthful in site! And you know the BEST bit? I enjoyed EVERY MINUTE OF IT!

We spent the Easter break celebrating our good friends wedding in Melbourne, there were celebrations galore and it was seriously so much fun catching up with everyone (not to mention being baby free :))

I haven’t always ‘enjoyed’ celebrations like this. Just the thought of them would make me feel anxious, and stressed. After being out I would often lie awake feeling guilty about what I had eaten, and think about how I was going to eat ‘better’ and exercise the next day. In all honesty it’s taken me years (15-20 to be exact) to move past all of these feelings of guilt and anxiety and in to a better place.

A place where I no longer feel guilty about food when I ‘relax’ things a little. A place where I actually enjoy eating delicious ‘sugar filled’ food. A place where I know that if I indulge for a few days it ISN’T going to change the way I look!


But most importantly, I’m arriving at a place where I am at peace with food.


Being back in the office after the break, I was saddened by how many women around me were feeling guilty about what they’d eaten over the break. “The health kick starts today”, “Omg I ate so many easter eggs”, “I’m going to the gym every day this week”. Hardly anyone told me how much they had enjoyed themselves over the break. Almost everyone was so caught up feeling guilty about their ‘bad’ food choices that they probably missed out on actually enjoying themselves.

Now that I’m back home and in my own kitchen, I’ve made it my mission to prioritise home cooked meals. I’ve put on the slow cooker, I’ve stocked the fridge full of fruit and veggies and I’ve got my meal planner out right now planning next weeks meals.

If you’re reading this, and you too are feeling guilty about your Easter indulgence then STOP! Those feelings of guilt and anxiety are ten times worse then a few cadbury eggs. Starting now, get yourself back on track. Use the weekend to sit down and find a few recipes for the week ahead, head to the markets (or shops) and stock yourself up with wholefood goodness. 

It’s time to get honest about REAL. HEALTHY. FOOD. Food should be fun and is there to be enjoyed. If you want to free yourself from feeling guilty or stressed, then let me help you get back on track. Let’s get in touch today and talk about taking the first step around your health and your happiness.

My top 5 tips for managing stress and overwhelm by The Nourishing Space

My top 5 tips for managing stress and overwhelm

Our ability to manage stress and overwhelm are commonplace in today’s busy society. But feeling as though you can cope with everything that life throws your way is possible with my top 5 top tips for managing stress and overwhelm.

For so many of us, the feeling of stress and overwhelm are a constant. Gone are the days that serious life events like an accident or health scare were the only real causes of stress and overwhelm. Today it seems like we only need to glance at our emails, miss a connecting train or rush to prepare a meal to trigger that same sinking feeling of ‘it’s all too much’.

Now whilst my last few examples may sound trivial, no doubt a few of you are nodding your head thinking ‘yes I’ve felt stressed or overwhelmed by one (or two..) of these things the past week’. The scary thing to consider is that when we feel stressed or overwhelmed our bodies have the exact same response to these stressors as it did back in the cave man days when we were running away from a sabre tooth tiger.

Yes, you heard right. Your body produces the same chemical reaction to looking at an overflowing inbox with a sense of panic, as it would running away from a tiger and thinking your life was in real danger. Now any educated person can tell you that one of these things will actually put your life in danger. The other, not so much.

In a society that doesn’t look like it is going to slow down any time soon, the opportunity we have is to try and manage our body (and minds) response to stress and overwhelm as best we can.

My top 5 tips for managing stress and overwhelm

1. Breathe

Your breath has the ability to calm down your body and significantly reduce feelings of anxiety. Next time you’re in the moment and you find yourself becoming stressed, overwhelmed or anxious focus on your breath and consciously slow things down. Take 5-10 long slow breaths, and fit this in whenever you can throughout the day. It may be when you’re walking around the block, or going to your next meeting, the bathroom, whatever works for you.

2. Quiet your mind

There have been countless studies on the benefits of meditation. Not only does meditation help to calm the mind and body, it also allows us the space to gain clarity, creativity and a sense of calm. Often when we become so overwhelmed with what is on our to-do list we can’t make a clear decision. We are clouded by feelings of stress and pressure that we end up making more mistakes! Meditation doesn’t need to be a huge commitment. Start with becoming conscious and focusing on your breath for 1-5 minutes each day. You could do this sitting still, first thing as you wake up (before you check emails), on your commute into work, while you’re walking. My point is, it doesn’t need to ‘look’ perfect, it just needs to happen.

3. Manage your perception of pressure

I’ve often found that when I feel stressed and overwhelmed it’s because I have worked up a situation in my mind so much that I’ve gone into a tizz. My husband will often say to me, ‘why are you so stressed about this’* (washing, cleaning, cooking, general life organisation) and the reality is, he is often right. We stress so much because often we care so much. We don’t want to let people down, look like a failure, not deliver on a deadline etc.. But if the situation is causing you to feel stressed or overwhelmed, I encourage you to check in and ask yourself lovingly is the stress that I’m causing myself an accurate reflection of my reality? Or do I need to reassess things? Possibly ask for extra help, an extension or break the task down into more manageable pieces.

4. Prioritise self-care

In times of stress and overwhelm, it is essential that we prioritise self-care. If you speak to anyone who’s ever had a serious break-down (or minor meltdown) it is often straight after periods of intense stress. As often as you can (aim for weekly) make it a priority to do something for yourself. Now this doesn’t need to be a huge grand gesture, it could be as simple as running yourself a bath, or reading a few chapters of your book, or having a glass of wine with a friend. Anything that takes your mind off things, and allows you to check back in to that happy space. If you need some tips, I’ve shared some ways that I prioritise self care here.

5. Set manageable tasks to achieve

The final tip for managing stress and overwhelm is to set manageable tasks to achieve. So many of us are rewards driven by nature. We feel a sense of accomplishment when we tick something off our to-do list or complete a task. So set yourself a goal. What are the top three things you can set out to achieve today, this week, this month that will have the biggest impact on your life? (and stress levels). Consider what you’ll need to do, plan for any obstacles that may come up and most importantly think about how you’ll feel (and maybe reward yourself) once you’ve achieved this.

So over to you. What will you do TODAY to help manage your stress levels? How could you implement some of these simple strategies into your life to bring you greater balance and joy?

Managing stress is just one of the ways I help my 1:1 clients. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or just need strategies in place to start feeling happy and healthy again, send me an email so we can chat further.

My Mindfulness Practice By The Nourishing Space

Mindfulness

If you’ve been following me on social media recently, you may have seen my Mindful Moment collaboration whereby I am posting a daily #MindfulMoment from experts in the Health & Wellness industry, sharing how they cultivate a mindfulness practice.

The idea came to me when I was breastfeeding, as I reflected on a conversation that I’d had with one of my clients earlier that day. It went something like this “I know I should be meditating’ but I feel like it’s just another thing to add to my ‘to-do’ list and I’m already busy enough”. Sounds familiar right?

The conversation got me thinking about mindfulness a little.

You see, mindfulness is a choice.

It’s a conscious choice that we make, moment to moment. It is about stopping and connecting with the present moment, and we tap into this consciousness through our breath. It’s about being in the here and now. Not jumping back in time, not thinking about the future, not scrolling through social media. But being here, in this exact moment.

So as I sat and fed Emma, I focused on my breath. No phones, no distractions, no thoughts. Just my breath in and out. I started to feel a sense of calm, my shoulders started to ease up, and I started to feel a little less frazzled.

I’ve continued this practice in some form everyday for the last two months. It’s not structured, and it looks different every day. Sometimes it’s as I’m feeding, other times after I’ve put Emma down and some days it’s at the very end of the day as I jump in to bed, a simply in and out of my breath.

Since being consistent with my mindfulness practice, I can say without hesitation that it has had a bigger impact on my health over the past 6 months than any superfood salad, vitamin or green smoothie.

What has made the difference for me is consistency. Showing up everyday.

Conscious, connected breath.

It was after this 3am epiphany that I realised that I wanted to share more about mindfulness. About its simplicity, because I truly believe that mindfulness is a learned skill. Just like riding a bike or mastering a headstand in yoga it takes practice, perseverance and patience!

It’s about saying, as busy as life gets, I am still going to show up to my mindfulness practice. It doesn’t need to be hard, you don’t need to over think it, you just need to give it a go. Trust me.

Giving yourself the gift of mindfulness and taking a few long slow deep breaths to yourself everyday will give you clarity, a sense of calm and connectedness. It will help you be a better friend, colleague, sister, daughter, mother and wife and all it takes is a mindful moment.

I’d love to hear more about your Mindfulness practice. How do you cultivate an inner sense of calm in your day? You never know, sharing your thoughts and techniques might help someone in The Nourishing Space tribe.

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Why I’m not setting New Year’s resolutions….

As we reach the January half-way point, I always wonder how many of us out there are still on track to achieving our goals? You know the resolutions, the intentions, the promises, the gym memberships, the detoxes…..

Sadly I’ve done all of these before, setting goals, joining gyms, embarking on ridiculous detoxes…and all with similarly disappointing results….

That was until last year year, when I decided to rebel against the check lists, and the overwhelming sense of having to ‘achieve’ and simply focused on how I wanted to FEEL….

And by that I’m talking about moment to moment FEELING…365 days of the year!READ MORE

its-time-to-create-space

It’s time to create space…

For as long as I can remember I’ve been interested in health and wellness… what people eat, how to move your body, the newest health craze, exercise or ‘superfoods’..chances are I’ve either read about it, bought it or it has found its way into my weekly menu…READ MORE

Why choose love By The Nourishing Space

Why choose love….

It has been quite some time since my last Nourishing Space post…..and in all honesty I have sat down at my computer many times to write and each time, I have been hit with a wave of fear…. My ego has gotten the better of me, and self doubt began to rear its ugly head….

I literally caught myself having a conversation in my head….it went something like this…’what will your readers think’…’why has it taken you so long to get back to your blog’….’why can’t you fit this in?’…..I let this play out for weeks and instead of showing up to my blog….I’d  let my ego…or as my friend Mel would say my ‘mean girl’ take over and stop me from doing something I love.

You can apply this analogy to any scenario in life….be it a job, hobby, relationships, personal goal, fitness, weight loss…..How many times have you talked yourself out of doing something that you want to do, something that makes you happy, or that would help set you on a path to creating the life you want…simply because you were scared…. Or worse still because you were worried about what others might think…..READ MORE

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Create the SPACE and life will follow…..

Where is this year going? How can it be that we are almost in August….almost through Winter….almost back to sunshine and warmth?

To all my followers and friends who have asked what’s happening with the Nourishing Space…I guess the simple answer is that LIFE is what has been happening….

Each week I’ve sat down to write and it just hasn’t flowed…..I’ve been blocking myself….finding another distraction….avoiding creating space…or as my dear friend said to me ‘maybe you’re just not Nourishing Yourself’…..

She was right…I’ve written on the blog before about the power of a positive mindset and the importance of creating space for yourself…but I can honestly say this is an EVERYDAY.CONSCIOUS.PRACTICE….READ MORE