As a yoga teacher, I should be the calmest person ever, right? That is a false assumption many people make about yoga teachers. For me, I came to yoga because I really needed tools to find calm for myself. Add to kids to mix, and I needed even more tools with less time commitment.
As though motherhood was not stressful enough, the last year really tested us in ways we never knew possible. Having skills to cope is key. But since life is busy, they need to be easy to incorporate into our lives without having to make shifts or time commitments.
When I used to teach baby and me yoga classes, I would often talk to my students about how as mothers we have to find calm in the chaos that is motherhood, all while multiple babies were crying and just not having it.
So today, I am going to teach you 4 super simple tips you can do anywhere, anytime to snag a little calm, even in the midst of the chaos of motherhood:
Tip #1: Breathe
There are so many amazing breathing techniques, but we are going to keep it super simple. Just breathe! Deepen your breathing. Expand your lungs as you inhale and lengthen your exhale as you release all the air. You can try this in a few different ways:
- By just forcing the exhalation to be longer. Gently force all the air out of your lungs, letting the inhale just happen, repeat.
- Count the breath. Inhale for 4, exhale for 7.
- By constricting the back of your throat as you exhale. Mouth is closed, and you sound a little bit like Darth Vader.
Bonus! You can get your kids to practicing deep breathing with you when they might need to find a little calm themselves.
Tip #2: Ground yourself where ever you are
Wither you are sitting, standing, or laying down, imagine that your spine is anchoring deep into the earth and spreading like roots of a tree. As the roots spread, breathe deeply and imagine that you can release whatever it is you want to let go of (tension, stress, worry) into the soil, while also bringing in whatever it is you need (calm, confidence, strength, patience).
Another really great way to ground yourself and find calm is to physically put your body on nature. When my kids play outside or at the park, I take off my shoes and let my feet physically touch the ground. Connecting to nature is a great way to reset. Which leads me to number #3….
Tip #3: Get outside and shake it out
Fresh air is magic. For both adults and kids alike. When you are feeling a little frazzled, get yourself outdoors and move your body. You don’t need to exercise. You can do something as small as shake your body out or (my favorite) tense your entire body and then release it all with a sigh.
Tip #4: Mantra
A mantra is a word or phrase that you repeat to aid in meditation. In this case, to induce a sense of calm.
The mantra “peace begins with me” is my favorite mantra for motherhood.
Because peace does begin with us. We have to be aware of how we respond to situations, and if we can find calm in ourselves, more than likely everyone else will be a little calmer too, eventually.
You can simply repeat the mantra with your breath, say it silently to yourself or say it out loud. Anything goes. As you repeat your mantra, breathe.
I hope that you can use these tips next time you feel like you need a little bit of calm in the midst of what can be a little chaotic sometimes. As mothers, and humans, it is so important that we find calm and ways to help manage the stress of motherhood and of life. Once we have the tools we can share them with our kids, because they need tools to cope as much as we do.