About a year ago I bought an Apple Watch. At the time I was most excited by being able to read my texts and emails right there on my wrist as soon as they came in the hopes of being more efficient at work when I’m away from my desk so often. Here I am, a year later and work life continues to be as hectic as ever, but I have found that my Apple Watch has benefitted me in a way I never expected. Each morning a little blue flower pops up that prompts me to make mindfulness a routine part of my day. Honestly, I swiped the prompt away each morning for months until one day I opened it and allowed myself the full minute to breathe conscientiously. That one minute of breathing snowballed and has helped me continue to integrate mindfulness into my daily routine each day – whether through that early morning minute of conscientious breathing and guided reflection, or through other small changes I have made to maintain self-awareness, and ultimately reduce stress.
At the Club I have an amazing team of Directors and Program Managers who work closely together to ensure the youth and families we serve have the safest, most positive experience we can provide. This is not an easy task in light of the many changing environmental and social factors we have all been facing. So, as we enter the time of the year when we all seem to be confronted with the many blessings the holiday season brings, as well as the heightened stressors and challenges, I have asked the Club staff what they are doing to be mindful and take care of themselves. Here are just a few ways that you can be proactive in making the most of yourself this season:
- We spend a lot of time in our vehicles – at red lights focus try breathing exercise like counting breathes or breathing through your nose to give yourself a brain break.
- Find a time each day to spend a full 60 seconds reflecting on something positive in your life
- Try out a mindfulness app
- Make sure to fill your emotional tank by scheduling time for activities you enjoy
- Take a walk outdoors
- Pet your dog
- Most importantly, whichever mindfulness activity you chose – make it a HABIT
As the Holidays approach and COVID hangs on, we hope you find a way to be mindful and intentional in caring for yourself. It is with caring for ourselves that we can truly nurture and give back to others in a creative and healthy way.