Every night when I put my four-year old to bed, we talk about the best part of our day.
His answer is always the same: “I liked everything.”
Oh the joys of being four.
If you're anything like me lately, exhausted from working and managing a household or bored or under-stimulated from minding children all day, your answer would likely be food or alcohol related.
Now, there’s nothing wrong with getting pleasure from these things. But if you don’t have diversity, you can end up over doing it and using it as a way to avoid feeling unpleasant emotions like stress and boredom.
And if you’re constantly giving to your family and work and have nothing left for yourself at the end of the day, it’s natural to turn to what is easily accessible and habitual.
But even if we could make time for other things we enjoy, we would feel guilty for not spending that time working or taking care of our household and self-critical for not doing something productive.
That’s because women are socially conditioned to put other people’s needs ahead of their own and define our self-worth based on their productivity.
But here's the truth: experiencing pleasure and taking time for leisure actually helps deepen your connection to others and be more productive.
When you give your nervous system a break from feeling stress and allow it to feel the positive emotions of pleasure and joy, your creativity and focus increase. Your body generates more oxytocin, which promotes feelings of love and wellbeing and helps you feel more connection to others.
So make time for some of the joy and pleasure that fulfill your life everyday.
Start small by carving out a few minutes a day for the things that lift you.
Listen to music, curl up with a good book, have a dance party, an orgasm, call or text a friend who makes you laugh, feel the sun kiss your face, take in the sound of your children’s laughter and excitement - whatever lights you up!
Allow yourself to become immersed and let the feeling of pleasure really sink in, even if it’s just for a few moments.
If you start to feel guilt or self-critical, remind yourself that you have so much more to give when you take care of yourself too.
And at the end of the day, ask yourself: what was the best part of my day? What were the moments that ignited my soul and made me feel alive?
If you’d like some help prioritizing pleasure and managing your mind so you can actually enjoy it, I’d love to help.
Email me today to schedule a FREE coaching session: firstname.lastname@example.org