Menopause is tough. I know I’ve been there. The 3am wake ups, the sudden flashes of heat, the gnawing anxiety and the struggle to recall simple facts.
Menopause makes you extra vulnerable to the judgments, criticism and opinions of others who have no idea what you’re going through.
And that’s hard.
But by practicing self care you don’t just help manage your symptoms you build resilience too. You become less fragile.
Here are seven simple self care strategies you can weave into your daily life:
1 Morning routine
There are a few formulas out there claiming to be the perfect morning routine.
One of the most well known is The Miracle Morning, devised and written about by Hal Elrod. He identified 6 activities to include in your morning routine:
I love the idea of silence first thing – a couple of minutes to create some space for you mentally to prepare for the day ahead.
Avoid jumping out of bed and immediately checking your Facebook feed or work email. Otherwise your day is immediately hijacked by the needs of others, rather than focusing on what’s best for you.
My view however is the best morning routine is the one that feels good to you and the one that you actually follow EVERY DAY.
What do you love to do that you can get lost in?
For me it’s the piano and running. When I’m playing the piano I can’t think about anything else except the music or I don’t play well.
When I run I let my mind roam freely and that’s so relaxing.
When you’re doing stuff you love you’re not stressed. For you that could be reading, knitting, walking, dancing…
It’s different for all of us but the important thing is you make time to do it.
3 Environment change
If you still haven’t changed your eating habits, your drinking habits or your bedtime routine, maybe changing your environment will spur you into action.
You’re a product of your environment so if you feel stuck, shake it up a little bit.
Shop in a different supermarket. Eat in a different room. Sleep on the other side of the bed.
4 Celebrate your successes
Stop focusing on what’s not working and celebrate what is.
It’s so easy to focus on what’s not working rather than what is. So pause and congratulate yourself on what you’ve done well today.
5 Get outside
Go for a walk or sit in the garden but get outside. Exposure to daylight is essential for a good night’s sleep and, when you sleep, you’re far less stressed.
6 Care for your body
Food is energy. If you’re feeding yourself well you’ll nourish your body, reduce internal stress and calm your symptoms.
Clean up your eating and you’ll clear your mind.
Gratitude is a learned behavior and the more you do it the better you get at it.
Instead of getting into bed and worrying about not sleeping or what you’ve got to do the following day, practice gratitude.
See if you can list 20 things to be grateful for. It can be anything from the roof over your head to the colours in your garden to the person lying next to you.
What all these 7 self care strategies have in common is they help to calm your body and mind. Self care will help to relieve the internal and external stressors that are making your symptoms worse.
Self care helps you to reset and recharge and, by doing that, you body’s better able to cope with the changes it’s going through. Your flushes, your restless sleep, your mood swings and the brain fog will all begin to fade.
Which self care strategy will you implement first?