Time to Simplify! 5 Ways to Lower Anxiety

This past Sunday, my family and I went to church for our Regional Conference, and one of the talks given was full of encouraged advice on how to simplify our lives. Our Heavenly Father doesn’t want our lives to be complicated, but unfortunately, we make it that way. We tend to overwork ourselves physically, emotionally…and every other way we can think of – and it causes our anxiety levels to skyrocket. This leads to more problems, which ultimately makes our already-high levels of stress to overflow. This. Just. Doesn’t. Work. Period.

While the talk was being given, my husband and I kept looking at each other, as if we were reading each other’s minds – knowing we needed to hear what was being said and reiterated. He owns his own software development company, and as the CEO, his job is to take care of everything…..

sorry…I mean…EVERYTHING!!!

Yes, he definitely has some great business partners on his side, willing to take away some of the burdens – but he’s the head honcho. If he isn’t spending time with his family, he’s working. All the time, he’s working. And I understand that, and as his wife, I’m on his side, supporting him. Yes, it’s hard with him not being around much, but it comes with the territory and he’s working 60-70 hours a week to not only provide for his family, but his employees and their families. Because they matter too!

And with that, I hold down the household while being a WAHM with Coupon Friendly. Sometimes…well, lately, most of the time, I’ve had to push my blog aside to take care of my 1st and best job – being a momma. Having 5 kids is no walk in the park.

I commend ALL moms out there, whether you have one or seven children. You’re amazing. Don’t forget that.

Without the help of my husband with the kids, I have to do double-duty. It can be overwhelming…and when I recognize it, it’s almost too late. I become aggravated at our kids, and yell. Often, I stop myself and apologize to the kids and let them know what’s going on, so in turn, they recognize it.

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Our routines have gone out the window several times because of these anxiety issues, and after that talk, I’ve realized that I can’t let that happen. I’m a much happier, more grounded parent when I simplify my life. I’ve gone to accepting that I can only work part time on my Coupon Friendly blog. My kids (especially the baby) really need me right now, and frankly, I need them!

So I’m sure many of you have felt the way that I have at least once in your life time, so here are a few tips on ways to simplify your life:

1.) De-clutter and organize. As much as I love my kids bringing home their school papers and drawings from art class, I’ve found myself overloaded with worksheets piled up on my kitchen table, entertainment center and bookshelf. My kids and I compromised and picked out a few each that they favorited, and I laminated them, putting them into a scrapbook – and threw away the rest! Organization is key!

2.) I made this video on 4 ways to simplify your life as a mom! Check it out!

3.) Accept that certain things will NOT get done that day. I cannot multi-task worth a darn. I’ve learned to understand that I just need to focus on one thing. If you can, grab a notebook and write down at least 3 things for you to get done every day, so you won’t get so overwhelmed. Do not overwork yourself….instead, make TIME for yourself. Take care of you!

4.) Scriptures and Prayers! If you’re religious, like me, then take time out of your day to read your scriptures and say your prayers, even if it’s just one verse. Being reminded that I have a purpose here on this earth gives me that extra ‘umph’ I need to take on the days’ challenges. Remember, our Heavenly Father wants us to be happy!

5.) Get your kids involved in the house chores. Don’t us moms normally spend the majority of the day CLEANING?! I know I do – or at least I feel like I am! My two oldest kids have 3 small set chores that they do every day after school, and even sometimes makes dinner for the whole family. It’s okay…and encouraged…to ask for help!

I’d love to hear ways that have helped lower your anxiety and stress levels. If I missed any, please comment below with them.

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Breakdowns, Bullies and Babies – Moms, Keep Those Heads Held High

This past month has felt overwhelming, with my husbands minor surgery, the kids starting school, and finding out my (almost) 5 year old will also be having minor surgery….along with so many other issues being handed to me one-by-one, like a deck of playing cards. No matter how strategically my attempts were to score the royal flush, I was always falling short of the perfect hand. On top of that, my oldest daughter, who is in the 4th grade, was being bullied by a couple of girls at school, calling her a “fatty” on multiple occasions. All this has led me to tears, in anger and fear. With no motivation to do my job, due to the events, I’ve turned to my husband and a few close friends to vent to about my problems.

But you know, you truly don’t realize how minuscule your problems are, until something unexpected happens to someone close to you.

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When I had heard from my brother-in-law and his wife that they were expecting their second child, I knew how ecstatic they were. They had been trying for another baby for quite a while, so the positive pregnancy test sent them to the moon and beyond. But it was short-lived around 11 weeks after finding out their baby had stopped growing after 6 weeks gestation. I don’t need to explain how devastated they were at the news, or how the struggle is more than likely still lingering. I personally cannot fathom the idea of a miscarriage, but that day, I cried for them.

A few days after the situation occurred, I was able to sit down and talk to my sister-in-law about it, expressing to her how strong she was for pulling through this. We all go through issues every day, some worse than others, but we see her strength through the storm and are appreciative of it, reminding ourselves that things will be okay. It gave me the boost I needed to help my daughter with her problem at school, the surgeries, and prompted me to remember my blessings, instead of focusing on the bad.

I once heard that complaining actually releases stress, resulting in a happier frame of mind. While I understand the idea, I think it would be in my better interest to figure out how often, and the heightened emotional state I’m in at the time when the “venting” occurs. Because let’s face it, people…life happens. Mistakes are made. People make us angry. Things don’t always go our way. We are going to have times where we want to just let it out, instead of bottling it up. I’ve made the mistake of doing just that, and I caused myself to have anxiety attacks, which are in no way pleasant to deal with. With that said, I’ve grown to trust that life will go on. I must go on, not only for myself, but my husband and my children. And this is because of the strength of my fellow moms through hardships. I see their examples through their actions, their tears, their smiles. They inspire me to be a better person, and to make better choices.

So, to all of you moms out there who go through trials that I may not ever understand, please keep those heads up high. Please know other moms are watching how you react, and we want you to strive and thrive to the fullest. We are some your biggest supporters! Through the heartache and tears, we want to know that there is hope in this world to overcome obstacles that are out of our control. Your influence is our fortitude, and we cannot express enough our deepest thanks for it.

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Ella’s Spit-Up – How Do I Help Fix My Baby’s Issue?

Okay, so it’s more than just spit-up….literally!

So, I had a parental concern with my baby, Ella. And it’s something that bothers me to no extent, especially since I have never had this kind of issue with any of my other kids, besides my first-born, that only had breathing problems for a very short time during her first month.

When she was born, she took a huge gulp of amniotic fluid, which raised breathing concerns to the doctors, and landed her in the NICU for a few hours. It was the longest few hours of my life. Forget the amount of intense pain I was in (I had a c-section + abdominal muscle surgery), I just wanted my baby! Since being born, she’s done more than just the “normal” spit-up.

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She’s almost 3 months now, and projectile vomits almost every morning (about 30 minutes/hour after feeding). It seems to startle her, but she doesn’t act like she’s in much pain. She’s usually a very happy baby, naps often, is gaining weight normally, and spits up almost every feeding. We mentioned to her doctor about the projectile vomiting, and he gave her Zantac medicine to see if it would help. Every time I had given it to her, it made her spit up or projectile vomit.

I really hate seeing the stress in my baby’s eyes when this happens, and am worried that I’m going to have to stop breastfeeding and possibly switch to formula – however, I want to do what is best for our baby Ella!

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Does she have acid reflux? Is there anything I could try to possibly ease this issue? I can’t be the only parent! Please help!

I was grateful to those who have responded on Facebook, and have appointments with the doctor to figure this all out. I’m hoping to get more insight on the subject. Thanks for your help!