4 Ways Women Can Create Healthy Habits and Find Balance (A Guest Post By Emma Grace Brown)

If you’re a woman who is stuck in a daily grind that often involves taking care of your house, your job, and organizing everyone’s schedules at home, you may be teetering on the edge of burnout. Few people thrive under intense stress, and even for those who do, the increased stress hormones may eventually lead to depression, fatigue, and other health issues. Read through the following four tips to consider how to integrate small but powerful changes that can help you de-stress in your daily life.

1. Focus on Your Eating Patterns To Boost Overall Wellness

Choosing the right foods to nourish your body can be difficult even when you aren’t stressed, but it’s important not to turn to a diet of junk food and convenience options, regardless of how busy you are during the day. Opt for lean proteins and whole grains, and choose fruits and vegetables over foods with a high amount of saturated fat and sugar.

2. Optimize Your Sleep and Use Caffeine in Moderation

Though it may be tempting to skimp on sleep and just have coffee on tap during the day, it’s important for adults of all ages to get the appropriate amount of sleep each night. According to health experts at the Mayo Clinic, adults should make it a priority to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep per night. Focus on getting to bed earlier than midnight and avoiding screens for at least an hour before bedtime.

3. Build in Time to Exercise

Starting a great exercise routine may be the last activity on your mind after a busy day, but it’s crucial to move your body for at least 30 minutes a day to maintain a healthy weight and turn the clock back on preventable health conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. If you can’t spare 30 minutes all at once, consider dividing this time into three 10-minute mini-workouts throughout the day. 

4. Rethink Your Work-Life Balance

Whether you’ve spent the past year working remotely or you’re still at the office on a daily basis, there are likely a few ways that you can shuffle your schedule to gain free time and have a more comfortable lifestyle. For example, if you are working full-time at an office location, consider approaching your employer with a plan to work remotely (even for a couple of days per month) if this is possible for your situation.

If you manage other employees, whether online or in person, it’s especially important to take a good look at your work-life balance and find ways to de-stress. As ZenBusiness explains, the responsibilities of supervision can cause extra pressure. Be sure to take vacation days or mental health days, delegate aspects of projects to co-workers to give yourself a lighter load, and establish healthy boundaries with your co-workers and employer. Whatever your job, simply remembering to take a break during the workday and getting outside for a walk can help considerably.

For women, who often have to juggle work, childcare, and other family responsibilities, finding the right work-life balance is not always as simple as taking a few days off to recalibrate yourself. Use a few of the above tips to find a more sustainable way to maintain your obligations while also caring for your family and yourself. 

For more resources and inspiration on maintaining a dynamic lifestyle, visit Getting Through Anxiety, a blog written by B.W. Ginsburg!

I would like to thank Emma Grace Brown for giving me the opportunity to post her article on my blog. She reached out to me and asked if I’d like my blog to be a platform for this post. I can’t express how much that means to me. Please feel free to check out her blog!

Thanks!

-B.

The Good, Even In The Bad

Yesterday was an interesting day. It was interesting in that, while it was difficult, it was also great. Where I live it was 90 degrees. I went to my relative’s house. They don’t have air conditioning. Enough said, right?

The day started off really well. I had a doctor’s appointment and I did really well. I mean, really well. Even at one point, when I became slightly anxious, I didn’t let it take over. I’m so proud of myself that putting it into words doesn’t do it much justice. It was an amazing feeling to overcome my anxiety and have it not take control of the rest of my body to an extreme level.

Later on in the day was when things got a little more difficult. I decided to go outside a little bit and spend some time with Cali (an adorable stray cat my mom and I take care of). At first I felt okay with a small fan blowing, but soon I needed a break from the intense heat. I went inside and wasn’t able to go through the rest of the house like usual due to my relative painting. Therefore I had to head to the basement where it’s cooler. After still being too warm, I had to go back outside and retrieve the fan and bring it inside.

Perhaps to some, none of these things seem like a big deal. However, in addition to feeling overheated, I felt extremely anxious. My relative was busy and so instead of asking for help, I decided to try to do as much as I could on my own. I admit, it wasn’t easy. However, I got what I needed done.

In addition to the above achievements (and yes, I believe they were great successes), I also made a decision that was tough to make, but I believe was right. While I felt it was in the best interest of my relative, they seemed upset with the decision I made. I apologized and explained that my decision was meant to decrease their stress level and they said that they understood. They then thanked me for thinking of them. It still felt like they weren’t happy with what I did though. Still, I feel that I did the right thing and definitely, for the right reason.

All in all, I had a great day full of accomplishments. It’s a little challenging categorizing the day as ‘great’ when there were points where I felt very uncomfortable due to the combination of the heat and my anxiety. However, it did feel great to get through these moments.

I hope that everyone is doing well. Please remember how strong you are, even when things are difficult and when you’re struggling.

-B.

Doing What You Feel Is Best

I recently made a decision that wasn’t the easiest to make. There were both risks and benefits to consider and there were people sharing very opposing opinions. I knew that in the end, it was a decision I would have to make. While it would affect others as well, it would mainly be affecting me. Bottom line was this: it had to be my choice.

It was a difficult choice to make. My mom, whose opinion I deeply respect and always have respected, was one that was different from my own. I usually listen and follow her advice when it comes to my health, but this time, I went in the opposite direction. Don’t get me wrong, I heard her out and looked into what she was saying, but in the end, I did something other than what she recommended. Was it hard.? Yes. Do I regret it? No.

The really difficult part was how it felt to go against her. I felt somewhat guilty and I felt that she was trying to make me feel that way. It felt far from pleasant. Still, I felt empowered to make my own choice and I had a support system that encouraged me to follow what I thought was the right thing to do – whatever that might be. So that’s what I did. I went with the decision that I felt was the right one.

Here’s the thing about making choices. It isn’t always easy. Sometimes you’re going to have to go against what someone you love is saying. Why? Because deep down you have a different opinion; one you feel you shouldn’t ignore. I know it may be hard to not follow the advice of someone you respect, but sometimes it’s necessary. You have to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of the options placed in front of you and decide on the best one for you.

Let me be clear. I am not saying to go against the opinions of loved ones out of spite or anything of that nature. What I am saying is that we have to listen to our hearts and our minds. We have to really put thought into what we’re doing and go from there. We cannot allow others to guilt us into making us choose the decision that will make only them happy. I know that my loved one cares about me and was (and is) concerned that I was making the wrong choice; the risky decision. I know that she wants me to be safe and not to regret my choice. I know that. However, I also think it’s important to support one another. Remember, these difficult decisions are yours to make. Decide wisely and don’t allow others to guilt you into making the choice you don’t want to make. Stand up for that which you believe!

I hope you’re all doing well and I wish you all the best.

Reflection

I know that lately, I’ve been writing a lot about making progress. I’ve been talking a lot about this subject because, to me, it’s important. I’ve been struggling with anxiety for so long and while I still struggle, I’ve come a long way. It’s important to recognize that.

Just this morning, I was reflecting on how, a while back, I wasn’t doing something that I now am. Before, I didn’t feel as confident or comfortable when it came to doing this specific thing. Now, I feel much better about it. Sometimes I tend to forget just how much progress I’ve made.

I think we all make the mistake of selling ourselves short. We look at our imperfections and concentrate solely on the fact that we could be doing better. The thing is that if we look closely, we are probably all ready doing much better at something than we once did.

Reflecting is an important activity. It helps us slow down and take stock. It helps us remember that we’re strong, brave individuals that can reach our goals – even if it takes time. It doesn’t matter how long it takes us to get better, it matters that we’re working hard to improve our lives.

If you haven’t done already, stop and reflect on the progress you’ve made. I guarantee you’ll realize that you’ve come a lot further than you’ve given yourself credit for. Do you think you still have a long way to go? That’s okay! No one is perfect and we all have progress that still has to be made. The great thing is that with hard work, we can and will achieve our goals!

Interview For Writers of Cleveland Now Live!

B.W. Ginsburg

Hi everybody! I hope you’re all doing well. I was recently interviewed by Dana McSwain for Series One of Writers of Cleveland. I am so grateful for this opportunity. If you’d like to check out the interview, please click here! Dana truly did a wonderful job.

I first had the pleasure of meeting Dana McSwain at Loganberry Books. I purchased her book, Roseneath, which I have begun to read and thoroughly enjoy. If you’re reading this, Dana, I apologize for not finishing the book yet. As you may know, I started my first official job and have been pretty busy with that. Dana is so kind and generous. She’s unbelievably supportive and understands how hard writers work to achieve their goals. I’m really happy that I got a chance to meet her in person and collaborate with her on our most recent interview.

I hope you’re all doing well…

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Confidence

Confidence. It’s a word that seems to be thrown around quite a lot. Everyone seems to be telling us to ‘have confidence’. I know for me that’s often easier said than done.

I’m not sure if it’s because I struggle with anxiety or not, but I often worry that I’m doing something incorrectly. This makes it hard for me to trust in myself and my abilities. However, I’m slowly learning that I have good instincts and that I have to learn to rely on them and to trust that I do in fact know what I’m doing and talking about.

The other day at work I wanted to make sure that I was looking at everything right. It turned out that I was. My co-worker even said how sometimes one can begin to question themselves in our line of work. I said that I agreed and that I have in fact experienced this. She said that as time goes on, I’ll learn to trust in my instincts.

As I mentioned in previous posts, I think I’m pretty good at my new job. Yes, I ask for help (which is perfectly okay and there are people who are there to assist), but I am kind to those I assist and I take the time to do everything I can to help. I don’t give up on those that need my assistance and I go out of my way to do what is asked of me and, sometimes, what I offer to do on my own.

If you often get told to have confidence and you’re struggling to do so, you’re not alone. Having faith in ourselves can be difficult. Especially if you’re someone who wants to do your best and is worried about doing the opposite, you can start to self-sabotage and question your every move. However, let me tell you this: if you care that much about whatever you are doing, chances are that you are doing a great job! Trust in your abilities. If you need help, ask for it and keep mental notes on how to solve that problem on your own next time. And if you need help with that same issue again in the future? That’s okay too. Learning something new usually takes time.

No one is perfect. I repeat, no one is perfect! We all make mistakes and we all need some help sometimes. Both of those things are alright. Remember that you are a smart individual with many talents and that with hard work, you can and will accomplish your goals. I know it’s not always easy, but try to believe in yourself. Challenge yourself to become more confident!

Being Proud With Your Progress…And Not Comparing Yourself With Others

Hi everyone! Long time no write! As I touched on in my last post, I began my first official job. Therefore I’ve been busy and don’t have as much time to write. However, I wanted to take the time today to share with you the importance of being proud of ones progress and trying our hardest to not compare ourselves with others.

I’m not going to lie, it’s hard for me not to compare where I am in my life with where everyone else is. In terms of where I am, there are a lot of people who are further. I am almost thirty and as I reach that milestone, I start to reflect on where I could be in my life and yes, I begin to feel a little depressed. However, I start to realize something else – that I have made a lot of progress and you know what? It feels amazing! For the longest time I thought that I wouldn’t be able to get better at certain things because of my anxiety and you know what? I have! For the longest time I thought I wouldn’t find a job where I could work at home. You know what? I have! Not only that, but I truly feel that I’m doing a great job.

So yes, maybe I’m not as ‘far along’ with my achievements as some other people are at this age. Yes, I still struggle with anxiety and I still wish that it didn’t hold me back from doing certain things. But you know what? I’m trying my hardest and I am making progress. There is no doubt in my mind about that. None whatsoever. I am proud of how far I’ve come. I’m proud of my success and achievements. I’m going to keep working hard to get through my anxiety and I’m not going to give up. I believe that if I continue to face my anxiety on a consistent basis that I will make even more progress and hopefully, one day reach a point where anxiety will no longer hold me back from what I want to do.

I know that it’s hard not to compare ourselves to others. We see others who are closer to their goals than we are. Then there are some people who make rude comments or say hurtful things. It stops and makes us wonder if they’re right. I know what it’s like to wonder if I’m a failure. Let me tell you something. If you’re trying your hardest on a consistent basis then you are not a failure. Things take time and it’s okay if you’re not exactly where someone else is in life. What matters is that you continue to strive to make your life better. If you want to compete with anyone, compete with yourself. Make it your goal to make more progress so you can be more like the true version of yourself, the one that is not held back by negative obstacles.

I wish each and every one of you the best. Please remember to be proud of your progress!

Celebrating Your Accomplishments!

A lot of great things have come to blossom for me in these last two months. I started my first ‘real’ job and my book, Crimson Vows, sold out at Loganberry Books! These two events made me utterly happy and I am so grateful for these accomplishments.

I know I can’t speak for everyone, but sometimes my worrisome mind tends to try to destroy what’s good. When it comes to my job, I sometimes worry I’m not doing everything perfectly. When it comes to selling out of my book, I start wondering why it happened and found it hard at first to believe it did. I’m not going to lie, it’s still a little hard for me to believe. It’s something I’ve wanted for so long. Just like getting a job.

What I’ve come to realize, though, is that we have to celebrate our accomplishments. We have to believe in ourselves and be proud of ourselves. I worked hard to find a job, I got hired, and I’m doing my best. You know what? I think I’m doing really well. I also put a lot of work into writing Crimson Vows. It wasn’t easy going to Loganberry Books for the first time with anxiety and pitching my books (although Miesha did help make it a lot easier), but I did it. And you know what? It paid off!

There are times when we all struggle. There are times when we wonder if we’ll ever accomplish our goals. I truly believe that with hard, consistent effort, we will. I know it can sometimes be hard to see and believe, but it’s true.

For those of you who are struggling, hang tight and stay strong. Keep fighting for what you want. Don’t give up on your goals and when you achieve them, celebrate them!

I wish you all the best! 

Feeling the Difference

There’s a great sense of achievement and calm that washes over you when you have an especially good day. When you see yourself doing things without anxiety making you feel unsure of yourself and unsteady. When you feel a sense of normalcy, one that comes with doing things with ease and comfort.

I had a really good day today. I went to a relative’s house and hung out, walking around and getting more done than usual. As a bonus, when I was doing these things, I felt calm instead of frazzled and full of stress. There was a point when I really focused on just how good I was doing.

To be honest, all week has gone pretty well. While I have been going out more than usual this week, I’ve managed to get things done for the most part with minimal anxiety.

I want you all to know that with hard work on a consistent basis, you can and will get through your anxiety. I know I’ve said this a lot, but it’s true. I know how hard it can sometimes be to remain faithful and believe in ourselves. We sometimes look at how we struggle day after day and it makes us wonder if we’ll ever overcome our obstacles. I don’t want you to lose faith. You are worthy of believing in yourself and worthy of winning the battle against your struggles. Stay strong and don’t give up on yourself!

There is something truly amazing about feeling the difference between feeling anxious and feeling confident and relaxed. Just as I have, you can feel that difference if you try your hardest to face your fears.

For My Book Loving Friends…

Hey everybody! This is just a gentle reminder that in addition to blogging about mental health, I have also written and self-published five books and one solo short story. All of my books and my solo short story are available on Amazon.com, in addition to two of them (Crimson Vows and Rest in Piece) also being available at the bookstore, Loganberry Books. The bookstore is located in Shaker Heights, Ohio (https://store.loganberrybooks.com).

In addition to blogging on this site, I also have two other blogs/sites. One is my writing site at https://restinpieceblog.wordpress.com and the other is my TV show/movie review blog at https://moviereviews48.movie.blog.

I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a bit more about me and where you can find more of my work. If you wish to visit me on Instagram, you can find me @b.w.ginsburg48. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. Thanks!

-B.