come as you are
start small: simple body movements, ideas and ways to help you feel better on the regular
Back in the day when I worked in corporate, multitasking was seen as a positive. I would go to a job interview and tell the interviewer my "best" quality was the ability to multitask. I knew in my heart that while I wanted it to be my best and I tried, it wasn't. At the time, employers wanted their perfect employees to be perfect multitaskers. Quite frankly, IMHO, multitasking is nearly impossible and it is not a real quality, nor is it being mindful. Imagine if I gave a massage or taught yoga while checking my phone and making a grocery list? No way!
I am sure some of you are saying "but I can actually multitask and I'm really good at it!" Naw....not really true. Mallory Creveling for Life by Daily Burn wrote an article posted on CNN entitled, "Fight Stress, Boost Productivity with Single Tasking." Spoiler alert: Multitasking doesn't really work...well. It takes a lot of brain bandwidth with reduced attention and efficiency: "...the truth is our brains can't actually multi-task....We finish about 50 percent less when attempting to tackle a few duties at once, instead of focusing on each one individually, says James Rouse, naturopathic doctor, author of Think Eat Move Thrive and co-founder of Healthy Skoop."
To a degree, you HAVE to multitask in certain situations - like a bartender making a drink for one person while someone else is shouting at them to make another drink and a third person is telling them about their recent break up story. For the most part you don't need to actually multitask; you are at your best when being mindful and focused on one thing at a time.
One of my massage clients was recently telling me he massages his upper back with a tennis ball while driving. I immediately made that yikes face. This is definitely not the first time I heard of a client doing that exact same thing. There are a few things not ideal about this situation but the main points are: If you're trying to massage yourself while driving, you're 1) probably not driving very well - so it's dangerous; and, 2) not really doing much massaging since it's stressful to drive.
I suggested taking the time whenever he has 10 free minutes - perhaps in the beginning or end of the day to roll on the tennis ball on the floor or against the wall. That way, the self-massage will be the only thing actually happening in that moment; therefore, the massage will be more effective (results). In addition, it'll be less stressful to massage yourself while relaxing at home instead of driving to a job in traffic.
I brainstormed a few ways to help single-task, allowing a more mindful approach to one main task. Some of these are similar to what I talked about in my "Savoring the Weekend" blog post:
What are some things you can do to single task instead of multitask?
For the past 6 or so years, I've chosen jobs where most of my day is spent on my feet and moving around. I wouldn't want it any other way. Being on my feet all day I feel it. At the end of a long day my feet and hips are not happy.
Feet are often the forgotten souls (pun intended) of our body. The ones who do the most work, with the least amount of credit. Until...they're screaming at you.
You don't need plantar fasciitis or a broken toe as the only opportunity to start taking time to support your feet. Whether you're on your feet all day for work, or walking in heals, or long-distance running, providing self-care to your feet is just as important as any other part of you...if not more.
When do the same thing over and over again (this goes for anything), our body gets used to it. With this muscle memory, imbalances start to form from the feet all the way up the body (knees, hips, lower back, etc. - you get it.) In addition, your feet start to stiffen up after being in the same position for long periods, offering very little flexibility and becoming achy (or painful).
Do you have any feet exercises, stretching, strengthening or self massage moves you'd like to share? Post in the comments - I'd love to learn more!
La Liz Blogs Again! Hint: This Time It’s Not About Lobster Rolls but Simple Movements to Help You Feel Good on the Regular
I’m blogging! Again. The last time I had a blog it was about my two favorite things to eat. The blog was entitled “La Liz Eats Lobster Rolls and Mac n Cheese.” It had a nice ring to it, amiright? It was filled with posts about different lobster rolls in Boston, as well as mac and cheese bake-off’s I hosted at my place back in the day. Much to the dismay of my “fans,” I deleted the sad debunked site a few years ago. Though I’m still often asked by my Boston friends to recommend “the best lobster roll” in and around New Englad. I’ll take it!
While this new blog won’t be focused on mac n cheese,(that lactose gets me every time!) it will focus on another passion of mine: movement and working inward to feel better. This is my style of self care. Everyone's is different. For me, it includes a variety of things: biking outside, doing yoga, taking walks without a specific spot to land, performing on stage, and meditation. For this blog, I’m breaking it down more specifically. I’ll offer simple & supportive body movements to help alleviate pain, destress and focus internally to perhaps help you feel more comfortable. This isn’t about fancy yoga poses, or expensive yoga clothing. I aim to provide short & sweet tactics and a variety of options to do on the regular, using pictures and guidelines. This is meant for every body and every ability.
So why is it called “Come As You Are”? Not only is it one of my favorite Nirvana songs, but it is a saying my close friend Molly and I often say to each other when we’re not in the mood to do something or go somewhere. Long story, short, it means even if you’re not feeling “on” or 100% your best, just come (wherever that may be) and be yourself, as you are in that very moment. Whether that’s showing up to work, at a yoga class, dinner with a friend, or lazying around with your significant other, every day and moment feels different in your body, as do your emotions and mentality. So just come as you are…and work with that moment to show up fully.
Ok, that about sums it up for now. This will be the longest blog post of the bunch. The rest will be simple and less wordy (brevity is a challenge I’m working on). Take ‘em or leave ‘em. But hopefully in the midst of a few of my posts, you’ll find something that works for you in your body and soul. If it doesn’t, feel free to ask me a question and we can work together to figure out what might work.