How Nurturing Routine Can Help You Beat Stress & Boost Wellness
by Maressa Brown May 22, 2020
Feeling like the days are blurring and blending together or as though it’s tough to get a grasp on daily to-dos is a normal experience for many of us right now. Whether you’re missing that regular spin class or pushing a deadline in order to help your child with their schoolwork, the way you used to structure your days and weeks has likely gone out the window.
“When normal routines have been disrupted, you can lose a sense of time and get a bit disoriented,” explains Jeanette Raymond, PhD, a Los Angeles-based psychotherapist who holds her doctorate in clinical psychology. “At first, it feels like a vacation, but then it becomes destabilizing,” she says.
Thankfully, Raymond says that prioritizing routine & structure in simple, rewarding ways — from meditating to taking your daily CBD dose — can have you feeling more grounded, centered, and well. Here’s what you need to know.
The Case for Prioritizing Routine & Structure Right Now
Just a few ways establishing and adhering to your own routines can support your wellness and success, especially during an especially stressful time:
1. You won’t feel like you’re pouring from an empty cup
Victoria Nungesser, a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist in Newtown, Connecticut, says many of her clients are adhering to structures related to their kids’ needs or professional responsibilities — at the expense of their own self-care. For instance, they’ll say they should help their kids with their schoolwork instead of taking time to exercise. Or they need to stay up late working to hit tomorrow’s deadline instead of packing it in to get valuable Zs.
But when self-care routines get lost in the shuffle, you might find yourself pouring from an empty cup. “Many people can’t emotionally or physically give to others what they don’t have to give to themselves. Especially as our lives are feeling disconnected from our typical norm,” says Nungesser.
In order to give to others and feel centered yourself, it’s crucial to establish and stick to the routines you need for your own well-being, explains Nungesser.
Taking a moment to relax and recharge makes me feel more available for others throughout the next day.
For instance, taking a bath every evening is a must for Kellie Burch Overton, Head of Content Marketing, Equilibria. “It’s therapeutic for me and helps me decompress from the day,” she notes. “It gives me the opportunity to think of and care for just myself. Even just a little bit each day. Taking a moment to relax and recharge makes me feel more available for others throughout the next day.”
If you’re struggling to stick to those self-care rituals, consider scheduling them on your calendar or in an organizer app like Cozi, suggests Nungesser.
2. You’ll foster peace of mind
One of the most difficult truths about our current reality is the lack of control we’re all feeling more than ever now. But structure and routine can offer a sense of control, says Irene Little, PsyD, a family therapist from Frisco, Texas. “It is not possible to control the unknown, other people or other situations,” she says. “We cannot control when the COVID crisis will end or how it will end. Or even all of the impact it will have on our family, friends and ourselves. But, we can control how we react to it and some of our outcomes. And when you remain focused on what you can control, it offers peace of mind.”
That peace of mind can help you better manage stressful thoughts, says Raymond. “Routines and structure can prevent any low-level anxiety that comes with current uncertainties from becoming full-blown,” she notes.
Bonnie Knobloch, Head of Business Development, Equilibria says her routine of having coffee alone in the morning when her three kids are asleep serves to do just this. “I feel so much better when I can wake up before everyone else and have a moment of calm,” says Knobloch. “It makes me ready to be more engaging when my kids wake up. And I do better when I feel like I’m going after my day opposed to the day coming after me.”
3. You’ll feel like you have greater purpose
Raymond adds that establishing and sticking to simple, rewarding routines — like doing a mindfulness practice or making a cooked breakfast — can keep you feeling like you have concrete reasons to get up and at ‘em. Then, once you’ve tackled your planned tasks, you’ll enjoy a sense of achievement. And all of this serves to improve self-worth and the ability to better keep blue or depressed feelings at bay.
Amanda Stilwell, Social Media and Digital Marketing Consultant, Equilibria enjoys a variety of benefits from her must-do morning routine: walking her dogs without her phone. “It’s an opportunity to care for myself and a rare moment when I’m not multitasking and distracted,” she explains. Stilwell also finds that taking the time to move mindfully for 20-30 minutes a day improves her mental health as well.
How your CBD plan is bolstered by routine
Just like a prescribed medication or multivitamin, CBD, like all cannabinoids, builds in the body over time. Regularly scheduling your daily dose will help you keep sustained levels in your system, which will offer more consistent support for your Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which has been shown to help regulate sleep, mood, and overall homeostasis (a body’s state of balance).
When it comes to getting the most out of taking CBD, you’ll do best to make a plan and stick to it. Says Autumn Mehl, Dosage Specialist, Equilibria. “Not only does CBD compound best over time, but it compounds daily,” she notes. “Every single dose that you take will work better if it is on the tail end of another dose.”
CBD can also support what might be considered your most important routine of all: sleeping and waking in a way that keeps you equally relaxed and energized. “When you take CBD, it amplifies your body’s melatonin, referred to as the sleep hormone,” explains Mehl. “That causes a sedative effect helping you fall asleep.” Similarly, in the daytime, your CBD dose can boost alertness. In fact, it activates some of the same pathways in the brain as caffeine, according to research published in the Journal of Internal Medicine. Research has shown it might also improve motivation.
If only for those benefits, which can go far to keep you on top of other daily to-dos, Mehl encourages her clients to stick to their CBD routine. And if it turns out to be the one thing you’re doing regularly or the one form of self-care you prioritize, that’s OK, as it will have positive, reverberating effects.
Prioritizing routine & structure: How a subscription can help
Having your individualized CBD dose from Equilibria set to ship on a regular basis can keep you firing on all cylinders. It can also further your commitment to prioritizing routine & structure. To support your wellness-boosting routine, consider signing up for a subscription.
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