It’s very ironic that I am the mother of three daughters.
Growing up, I was never a girly girl, and spent my high school years at an all girl school where there were girls obsessed with make up, fashion and looking their best. I, on the other hand, was more obsessed with rock bands, Doc Marten boots and doing well at school. Not a bad thing either.
At one stage, I remember thinking how I would much prefer to someday be the mother of all boys as I imagined it would be less stressful as I wouldn’t be surrounded by all the things that typical girls love.
Yet here I am, with three gorgeous girls, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.
One of the things I’m grateful for is the opportunity to raise three girls in a way that reflects my beliefs about the roles women play in society. Through my words and actions, I have the ability to teach my girls that its ok to like dressing up and looking good, but it should not be what defines us as women. I want them to learn that its just as important to spend time caring for what’s inside- looking after the mind, heart and soul.
My biggest hope is that as mothers, we create a future generation of women who spend as much time on their overall health and wellbeing, as they do putting on make up and styling their hair.
According to an article in the The Daily Mail, the average woman spends the equivalent of 55 minutes each day (that’s two weeks per year!) on their appearance. When you put it that way, it’s a little concerning that we often say we don’t have time to relax, meditate or just be still in the present moment.
Although we would all love to spend a day at a spa resort or having a massage, making time for our inner selves can be as simple as switching off from all distractions and being still for a few minutes.
My daughters attend a school that has a morning prayer/meditation ritual just before class begins. Sometimes they pray, other times they simply sit still and reflect or listen to soft music, with the whole class sitting in a circle around a lit candle. Its very calming and sets the tone for the rest of the morning.
Here are some easy suggestions that I have tried and work well, especially if you have never meditated or taken the time to practice being still and mindful:
-Spend five minutes before going to sleep lying in a quiet room, without any technology, and focus on creating a still mind. Do this by trying to erase any thoughts in your head and instead focus on your breathing and your body.
-Are you one of those people who as soon as they wake up, check their Facebook and emails? There’s a saying something along the lines of not checking your emails unless you are prepared to deal with whatever you might read. What you don’t know yet won’t hurt you. So instead, focus on creating a more calming morning routine.
-Stand outside in the fresh air for several minutes, taking in slow, deep breaths and counting to 10. Tune out anything else going on around you (including your kids arguing inside!).
I hope you find even a few minutes this weekend to implement one of my suggestions. We need to make the time to be still and practice mindfulness, rather than waiting for the moment to arrive. Let me know how you go!
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