Why you need to take time when you don’t have time

This is a lesson that I continue to learn and for me still takes a bit of working at.  When we are busy and stressed the last thing that we want to do is take a break, but in fact this is the best time to take short breaks and this is why.

The stress/survival response is designed to be triggered to save us from life or death situations, the thing for us living in modern times is the same response is triggered by every day stresses.  Most often for me this comes from having a lot to do and feeling like I’m not going to have enough time to do it. There is a panic/anxiety about running out of time and I’m pumping adrenaline around my system, which is quite draining as it uses a lot of energy.

In the past I’ve pushed through this, just kept going in a vain attempt to get everything done, but this just makes matters worse.  I generally end up running along the road to do the school pick up as I’ve not left enough time to get there in a calm fashion. Then I’m tired and exhausted to deal with what can be one of the most difficult parts of the day with a child who after school is also pretty tired and exhausted.

Since I’ve been adding more and more self-care into my daily routine I’ve become aware of when I’m spiralling into my panic of running out of time and done something that feels really scary…I’ve stopped.  Here are two simple things that have really helped me:


Focussing on my breathing

When I’ve felt like I’m ‘flapping’ I’ve sat for 10-20 minutes before I start my working day and just focused on my breath coming in and going out.  At first my breathing is often quite fast as I’ve been rushing around and feeling stressed, but very quickly it starts to settle and I felt much better.  I don’t use a special breathing technique, just simply breathing in…. and out….. and noticing how that feels.  The breath is such a powerful technique for calming and centring us.


Diffusing Essential Oils

I’ve always loved using essential oils and combing these with breathing has been a really powerful way for me to calm down.  Whilst I was sitting breathing I diffused a few drops of the Neals Yard De-Stress Blend which really helped to bring me out of my stressed state.


Then throughout the day I took little moments to take a few deep in and out breaths.  This transported me back to my 20 minutes earlier in the day and helped to reset and keep me in the calm zone.  I even managed to be on time to do the school run and had a much calmer time after school.  Give it a try now, just breathing in… and out…. simple, but very effective.

So next time you feel stressed know that your breath is always there for you to tap into. If you would like any further information about the essential oils I use then you can send me a message by clicking here.