Welcome to the New Year!
Time to do more, be more, have more because you are not enough, right?
Time to lose weight.
Time to do a cleanse.
Time to do a detox.
Time to do a fast.
Time to spend more time at the gym.
Time to do more yoga.
Time to eat “healthy”.
Time for the new you (seriously, I just saw this in an email)
I could go on and on.
This is the messaging we are bombarded with at this time of year. It may seem like it’s meant to “inspire” you to be your best self but it’s really meant to market goods and services you may not really need.
So I am here to counter the message that you are “not enough”. In fact, I am here to tell you that not only are you are more than enough but adding more to the to do list is the last thing you need.
You see, my clients tend to be…
Type A personalities (and I say this lovingly)
My clients don’t need to be doing MORE. They need to be doing less in order to feel a sense of peace, calm and wellbeing because this is often the missing link to good gut health. I cannot emphasize this more (but I will by bolding and underlining).
And I need to do the same. For me, the New Year is a time to refocus my effort and dedication to doing LESS. I know that sounds like an oxymoron – exert effort to do less. But when you start or resume any new habit it feels weird and takes effort to fit it into the day.
The key is to find the downtime activities that resonate best with you.
Got something that works already? Great! Go with it and make a point of doing it more often.
If not, experiment with a couple of new relaxation techniques until you find one you like.
Here are my tried and true techniques that help me find a sense of calm. You may want to try one and see if it works for you, as well.
- My favorite. So easy! If my clients are new to meditation then I have them start with simple breath work that they can do on their own, anywhere at anytime. Check out the demo:
Bed Time Wind Down Routine
- Sleep is critical for digestion, hormone reset, healing and recovery so I make sure to wind down each night at least 60 minutes before bedtime to ensure I get quality sleep
- Turn off the blue lights – no computer, no phone, no iPad, no TV
- Sip on chamomile tea. It is anti-inflammatory and has mild sedative effects.
- Gentle yoga stretches
- Warm shower with dim lights (ahh so relaxing)
- Breathing exercises in bed as I fall asleep
- Let someone else tell you what to do. All you have to do is listen.
- I love Headspace – great for those new to meditation. And Andy Puddicombe’s voice is so soothing.
- Yoga Nidra – If you have 20 – 30 minutes, you need to try this guided meditation. Don’t let the name yoga nidra fool you, you won’t be moving. Oh man, it is life-changing relaxation. Try this free version on iTunes. I resolve to do this at least once a week!
Cheers to doing LESS this year!
Sara Kahn, MS, CNS, CDN is a board-certified nutritionist specializing in digestive health conditions like SIBO, IBS, acid reflux and more. She’s the founder of Belly Bliss Nutrition and the Solving SIBO Program.