I could tell you many a story of a time when I was so tired, hungry, or completely drained that I snapped and lost my cool over someone doing something remotely normal. Like spilling water, draining the battery on my cell phone, or saying “Mommy, I’m hungry” (for the 20th time).
But I’ll spare you the gory details and just say that there are times when we all get irritable, impatient, and plain mean. I made it a goal to figure out why I got this way and how to prevent it from happening.
Because, let’s face it, I never feel pleased with myself after I’ve had a complete meltdown. The only way I look back on these experiences is with regret and sorrow.
After identifying the reason behind WHY I get this way (I’m sleep-deprived, hungry, or over-worked), I found 5 things that help keep me SANE.
- Get to bed at a decent hour.One thing that can often prevent me from getting my well-needed rest is having electronics right next to my bed. My tip? Plug in your tablet, laptop, phone, etc… on the other side of the room (or even in a different room if you can). This will prevent you from scrolling through endless Pinterest feeds at 2AM.
- Start your day early.Yes, there are two 6 o’clocks in the day. You’re throwing away hours of productive time by sleeping in. Follow step one to make this one easier. You’ll be amazed at how much you can get done before 9am, and the whole rest of the day awaits you.
- Schedule alone time.That’s right. You have to schedule this time. Otherwise, it won’t happen. Choose your favorite inspirational book, grab a journal, and find a quiet place where you can be by yourself, even for just a few minutes. Pray, meditate, and study what’s important to your soul. It’s like plugging in and re-charging your emotional batteries. It’s a lot harder to be mad when you have a clear mind to make sense of the situations. “You’re hungry? Sure. Let’s go into the kitchen and get you a snack.”
- Fuel your body with healthy foods.This one thing makes such a surprisingly large difference. How does food affect the way you feel? How could what you eat possibly affect your mood? Well, you’d be surprised. If you pay close attention, you’ll notice that after eating refined sugar, red meat or over-processed foods, you often feel lethargic. You know that feeling after lunch when you want to take a nap? That’s it! Try incorporating green leafy vegetables and lean protein, like baked salmon or grilled chicken. I’ve found the more vegetables include, the better I feel overall. But, even if you make small changes in this area, you’ll feel a difference.
- Energize your body through movement.If you can do this first thing when you wake up, it’s most effective for giving you energy through the rest of the day. It’s counter-intuitive when you think about it. If you’re exhausted, the last thing you want to do is get up and move. But, surprisingly, when I start the day off with exercise, I actually feel less tired than on days when I don’t. Again, start small and try to pair this with step 4.
I promise that if you take great care of yourself, there will be more of you to go around, you’ll feel more capable of dealing with life’s problems, and it will be easier to be nice to people.
I hope this helps you in some way. Leave me a comment or send a message and let me know what works to help keep YOU sane.
Don’t forget how amazing you are.