Unwind Your Mind Challenge Day 1

First, watch this short video on what happens to your dog and your body during stress, then move on to the exercise below.

Day One is about making a fun space for us to feel safe and present with our animals… and ourselves.

If you’re like me, you and anxiety have a bit of a tumultuous history…amirite!?

Lots of emotional stories, disorders and just plain hiding out in the house because the thought of going outside hurts too much.

And if I’m being really honest…

Feeling like an anxious person has always made me feel weaker and less-than when it comes to how I saw myself in the world.

Being super stressed because of work and relationships–and my dog, Laker, getting cancer shined a huge bat-signal sized spotlight on the urgent need to courageously transform my mind.

Laker was truly my mirror, reflecting back to me how I felt on the inside, and how I was making him feel.

I needed to stop letting anxiety limit my dreams to give my dogs their best lives possible.

Perhaps you’re like me and your anxious mind has been driving your bus your whole life?

Or maybe you’ve been experiencing never-ending guilt and stress, fighting your way through the constant ups and downs?

How often do you take purposeful time for yourself to reflect?

Your intention “is the soil in which you will be cultivating your ability to calm your mind and to relax your body, to concentrate and to see more clearly”. -Mark Williams

So let’s get super intentional about this right now.

Here’s what not making a safe space to be quiet looks like:

  • Feeling frazzled that you can’t get everything done.
  • Constantly feelings like what you give is just not enough.
  • Judging your emotions as burdens, so much so that the next time you feel them, you chastise yourself for having them, creating more stress.
  • Thinking there’s something wrong with you when you look at others on Instagram and see that they’re happy… so why can’t you be?
  • Constant guilt over thinking your dog is not having the best life.

The super poop-bag part about this?

That the stress response is often SO ingrained in us, we don’t even realize we’re having it. It becomes an unconscious habit.

Today’s exercise will help you create a place that you can start to make small reflections throughout your life.

Your Zen Den:

  • Create and decorate a place you have designated that you take solace with your dog.
  • Bring in your journal, something to play music with or any small decorations that make you feel peaceful.
  • This spot can be as super simple as a corner in your bedroom, closet or a portion of your bed. You do not need an extra room to do this.
  • Get creative and have fun! This space is just for you and your dog. There is no one right way or perfect way to do this. It can also be ever-evolving.

Pro tip: I like to bring in my dog’s bed and use it as a meditation pillow while they sleep next to me. 

Here is what my Zen Den looks like! It represents both of my dogs, my favorite trinkets and some calming crystals and essential oils.

 

For all your advanced mamas out there, take 5 quiet minutes in this space, reflecting on the gift you just gave yourself.

Look your dog in their eyes, feel your breath go in and out of your lungs, take note of your stress level before starting this challenge and how you feel after gifting this to yourself.

Comment below about your experience and leave some encouragement for your fellow anxious mamas too <3

 

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