Welcome to today’s blog post, I trust you are feeling well and love lighting your way. As usual I Give Thanks for your support and words of encouragement. If there is any particular topic you wish me to cover in Yoga Inspires, email me your ideas. Thank you. Today’s post, looks at seven quick and easy yoga self-care exercises you can squeeze into your night-time routine to give you some well needed Me-Time
Your life as a busy mum will always be full and revolve around your family’s needs; however, as your children get older and more independent, I hope you can carve out more time for Me-Time. As I woke this morning, I gave thanks that my daughters are all healthy, enjoy each other’s company and able to look after themselves. For me, the hard hands-on, nose to the grind-stone days are (hopefully) over as the twins look forward to starting university in September and my eldest daughter, Hasina ponders what to do during her Gap Year. When you have a spare moment, check out Hasina’s blog where she will be journalling her Gap Year experience.
However, with the school summer holidays here and if you live in UK, Olympic Fever slowly taking its grip on the nation, your time is once again in demand, especially if you are a grandparent and your daughters look to you to help them out with child care over the summer! My mum is visiting us from the Caribbean and even though my girls are active and make their own arrangements, I’m still grateful for her quiet presence and sense of order and stability she offers us. Mum has her set routine and you can more or less set your clock on what time she rises, has breakfast, lunch and supper and gets ready for bed. It is a comforting schedule for the girls as I am way more erratic and have to juggle their needs as well as everything else life offers.
How Do You Get Rid Of Stress?
In the midst of caring for your family, catching up on Olympic news and overseeing things at work, when you come home from work, how do you get rid of your daily worries and aches and pains? Do you exercise, go for a walk, chat with friends or collapse on the settee and watch TV, too tired to even have a meaningful conversation with friends or your partner?
Chances are, by the end of the day you tired and weary, your body stiff and achy from sitting all day at a desk working on the computer. If you are too tired to go for a walk, dancing or yoga class, here are seven simple ways you can unwind and get a bit of Me-Time at the end of your day.
No Equipment Is Needed Or Expensive Gym Membership
I know for many of you, lack of time and money is often the main reasons why you find it difficult to go to a regular yoga class, especially if you work long hours it is difficult to find a class that suits your schedule.
So, these simple Yoga Self-Care Me-Time Exercises, taken from my ebook, A Woman’s Book Of Yoga,can be practiced in the comfort of your own home, sitting on the settee or carpet in your living room, or if push comes to shove, in the bathroom! You don’t need any equipment or special clothing. As long as you can comfortably stretch in what you are wearing. That’s fine.
Getting Ready For More Yoga Me-Time
First of all slip off your slippers or shoes and loosen any tight clothing. Whilst practicing these relaxation exercises remember to breathe deeply and slowly throughout your nose.
7 Simple Yoga Me-Time Exercises To Help You Unwind At The End Of A Busy Day
Each exercise can be done within 2 minutes and will leave you in a much more positive and relaxed mood. Try them and see.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #1
Sit comfortably, with a nice straight spine and your feet firmly resting on the floor, close your eyes and take a long steady breath in through your nose and slowly breathe out through your nose. Do this for 3 more times as it helps to calm and clear your mind. Next breathe in slowly for a count of three and slowly breathe out for a count of six. Repeat this sequence of breathing in for 3 and out for 6 for 3 – 7 rounds. Slowly open your eyes and be aware of how calm and relaxed you feel.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #2
Raise both arms above your head. Place your left hand on your right wrist. Gently stretch to the right. Keep your body strong and straight. Breathe into the stretch. Switch sides and repeat.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #3
Still sitting, cross your left leg over your right knee. Place your right hand on the crossed knee. Gently turn your body to the left and look behind you. Allow your shoulders to be relaxed as you relax and breathe into the pose. Inhale. Release your arms and legs; return to centre. Exhale. Switch legs and slowly twist to the other side.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #4
Shake your hands for 30 – 60 seconds. Shake them high above your head, over to the right, to the left and down below your knees. Rest your hands on your lap, close your eyes and just notice the way you are breathing. Keep your breath soft and light.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #5
Give yourself a hand and finger massage. Gently massage your fingers and thumbs. Take time to really enjoy your mini-hand massage, if you have a favourite hand cream or even warm olive oil, use it to add a bit of luxury to your evening.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #6
Then after giving yourself the hand massage, brush/stroke down your left arm with your right hand. Switch and repeat on the opposite arm. Repeat 3-5 times on each arm and rest your hands in your lap and gently close your eyes as you tune into your breathing.
Yoga Me-Time Exercise #7
Lie on your stomach, fold your arms and rest your cheek on your arms. Observe the raising and falling of your abdomen as it expands and contracts with each breath. Stay in this position and take 3 – 5 rounds of deep abdominal breathing.
How Do You Feel Now?
Anytime, you feel tired and stressed, especially at the end of a busy day, rather than collapse in front of the TV and fall asleep on the settee or cram another activity into your evening schedule, take 2 minutes and practice any one of the above easy to do yoga Me-Time Exercises. You will feel less stressed, calmer, brighter and happier.
For the next three days, I encourage you to pick 1-3 of the above Yoga Me-Time Exercises and schedule at least three “Me-Time Exercise Dates” in your diary, and do them. You will release tension feel brighter and lighter. My favourite quick pick-me-up Me-Time Exercises are shaking my hands followed by giving myself a hand massage and stroking down my arms afterwards. What’s yours?
Share your thoughts in the comment box below and also if you know any other stressed and exhausted mums, do them a favour and kindly forward this post.
Together, we will make sure we put your desire for more zest and vitality on the map as you make time to care and look after yourself.
And, if you found the Yoga Me-Time Exercises useful in helping you to let go of stress and loosen your body, then I invite you to discover more practical ways yoga can help transform your tired worn-out body when you check out my easy-to-read ebook – A Woman’s Book Of Yoga, A Guide To Relax And Nourish Your Body And Soul. You can buy and download your copy of A Woman’s Book Of Yoga by clicking here.
Stay well and keep making time for you
Image, with thanks from khya via flickrr
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