Thursday, May 26, 2011

Food for Thought Thursday - Stress in our Society

If you've been following along at all the past few months, you know how much I've been affected by Kris Carr's book, Crazy Sexy Diet (and if you haven't - the answer is "very much"). While the book has "diet" in the title, it's actually been the lifestyle recommendations that have literally changed my life for the better. A recent article on her blog - entitled Addicted to Stress - really hit home for me and put into words all the things I'd been feeling but didn't know how to change before this book.

These days, I'm a much different person. Life is still hectic (even more so these days), but I don't let it consume me the way that I used to. For as long as I can remember, I have thrived on being busy - and at (many) points in my life - I've pushed myself way harder than I should have, with the rush of accomplishment sustaining me beyond the point of sheer exhaustion.

Years ago, I remember hearing somewhere that being ridiculously busy had become some type of status symbol in our society - that people prided themselves on being busier and more stressed out than others, as if it was a sign of accomplishment. It was a statement that really rang true with me. I enjoy being busy and challenged, but somehow, I knew that I'd lost the ability to apply the brakes when life started zipping by too quickly.

If you had told me just a few months ago that I had time to meditate, do yoga, exercise and (gasp!) take a nap on a daily basis, I would have told you that you were talking to the wrong woman. After all, I'm a homeschooling mom of two with a full time writing job, two blogs and a full load of my own activities. But amazingly, I have more time and definitely more of myself to give to each of those tasks when I made the time to recharge myself each day.

Recently, the kids have been playing organized sports, and I hear stories of similarly hectic schedules - from their teammates - kids as young as 4 and 5 that get up at dawn and spend a full day at school before being shuttled around to activities until bedtime. It makes me wonder what being that busy is teaching them - and what from that experience they will take with them into adulthood.

Both my Sprouts love to be active and on the go, but lately I've been scaling back our commitments and making sure to include plenty of down time for free and creative play in each day. I've also found a few good MP3 downloads of meditations for kids - some as short as 4-5 minutes that we can do together throughout the day. I'm hoping to teach them early on some of the lessons it's taken me so many years to learn.

1 comment:

  1. Great article! Yeah, I have been really careful about not overdoing it with the kids, but I still need to work on not overscheduling myself :) We do yoga and meditation with the kids every week at the Downtown Homeschool Enrichment Program. I really feel strongly about that being a regular part of any enrichment program. We like the Meditation curriculum and CDs from Stress Free Kids.