As moms, the week can fly by, a whirlwind of work conference calls, PTA meetings, projects that need last minute gluestick-and-glitter assistance, baseball practices, playdates and a million others stresses and parental obligations. This weekend, carve out a little time and refresh yourself through meditation. Trade a morning of soccer carpool with another mom, ask your partner to hit the Farmer’s Market or library story hour with kids-in-tow, let grandma get a little spoiling session in — it doesn’t take long to feel serious wellness benefits.
Dr. Nina Smiley, author of “The Three Minute Meditator”, offers simple tips to leave the week behind and put yourself into the right frame of mind to greet Monday morning relaxed, focused and ready to take on a world of bake sales, field trips, and meetings.
Breathe—As you enter the Perfect Weekend, it’s important to let yourself know that a transition has begun. Get yourself out of work and mom mode and into … whatever you want! Take three deep breaths and clear the mind as you do so, letting all thoughts go. This mini-meditation will welcome relaxation, as it also energizes your joy in taking time for yourself!
Visualize—Create an image in your mind’s eye of something you’d enjoy doing. Make the image as real as you can and mentally “walk” through it several times to support your intention. Don’t leave it to chance. Visualize whatever-it-is ahead of time, and then make a point to do it sometime during the weekend.
Change Self Talk—Get the “shoulds” out of your way by changing your mental chatter. Despite the intent to take a relaxed weekend, thoughts of that endless “to do” list can creep in, bringing tendrils of guilt with it. Self-Talk can help instead of hinder if you change your self script from “I should…(clean the closet… complete that memo…)” to “I give myself permission to …(take a nap…read that book I’m enjoying… simply kick back…).” This simple change in language will make a huge difference.
Relax Your Muscles—Often at the start of the weekend, the stress of the week hangs on, causing muscle tension that we don’t even realize. Our shoulders shrug or tighten and start drawing closer to our ears. Try a Body Scan Meditation to focus on releasing that tension. While sitting down, progressively tense and then relax different body parts. Start from your forehead and work down to your toes. Tighten each muscle group as you inhale and hold the tension for a few moments and then release it as you exhale. Encourage your muscles to relax by saying to yourself “Warm and heavy…warm and heavy” as you breathe out the tension.
Express Your Love—During the weekend, reach out to someone you love, someone you haven’t spoken to in some time. A phone call or email doesn’t have to be long or perfect, yet it will nurture the heart connection.
“While the Perfect Weekend offers opportunities for relaxation and recreation—don’t stress about doing it perfectly!” says Smiley. “These meditation techniques can be done anywhere, anytime that you want to calm, center, and focus. Let your weekend restore your energy and transform the coming week, one moment at a time!”
If you need a little assistance to get your ohm on, try these local options for guidance —
The Sanctuary Wellness Center and Yoga Studio — Tustin
Guided Meditation classes are offered by Kelly Heyler (BSN, RN) whose approach introduces the process of meditation systematically, each step building on the next, to develop a solid foundation on which to build a personal practice.
Yoga Shakti Wellness Center — Irvine
The Shakti Meditation Intro Course is designed for beginners, offering preparation to cleanse, strenthen and balance your mind, nervous system and energy channels to achieve a state of quiet awareness.
Seventh Chakra Yoga — Huntington Beach
Prenatal Yoga and Meditation, a class designed for those expectant moms who are struggling with fatigue or stress while adjusting to new roles and changing bodies.
Ra Yoga — Costa Mesa
Sky Yoga and Meditation starts with exploration of a three quarter mile loop featuring ocean and mountain views, before settling into a type of Tibetan meditation most often practiced outdoors.