Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Four Amazing Ways to Treat Social Anxiety Naturally

First off, I am not a doctor. I am merely someone who suffers from social anxiety, and I have seen results from a variety of ways, and I want to help other people. 

I was sitting in the parking lot of my new job--with my loving boyfriend next to me--sobbing. I knew what it was, I was terrified to go meet these new people, be judged, and interact with them. I was scared of what they might say to me, or what I might say to them. I always say something stupid, and then curse myself for weeks after. They were all wonderful and nice people, but there I was, paralyzed with fear. I didn’t know what to do, or how to fix the fear I was feeling. I spent so much of my time there crying in the bathroom, because I was too scared to walk out of the bathroom and be around people. I was worried I would say the wrong things, or they would judge me for the way I did my job. They would see how scared I am of talking, and avoid me. Wait. Isn’t that what I wanted? Why am I crying? I thought I would lose my job because I was in tears at the drop of a hat. I would come home from work and cry until I fell asleep from exhaustion. I would tense up when someone called my name, or even if someone looked at me. It had gotten to the point where even thinking about working or leaving my house set me off. How was I supposed to function in society if I couldn’t even leave my house?

Social anxiety is defined as a “chronic mental health condition in which social interactions cause irrational anxiety.” Seeking therapy is recommended as treatment, but there are natural treatments available for you to consider also. You don't have to suffer.

Healthy Lifestyle Changes

A great first step to treat your social anxiety is to make small, daily changes to help you feel better and improve your confidence so you can deal with those negative feelings you’re experiencing. I always recommend checking out your sleep schedule first. Are you getting enough sleep? As a mom of three, I understand getting a good night’s sleep is rare, or sometimes impossible. If you find yourself unable to sleep, try implementing a new sleep routine. Putting my phone away before a certain time and washing my face before bed has helped me get better sleep at night. Learn how to meditate! Doing this before bed is a fantastic way to help you sleep. There are hundreds of videos on YouTube you can use to learn. Another good change you can try is eating healthier and exercising on a regular basis. Focus on your whole self to see a positive change in your life.

Avoiding Bad Habits

Not only should you be boosting those positives in your life, and focusing on your healthy habits, but you should be avoiding the unhealthy ones too. It is quite common when you suffer from social anxiety to develop unhealthy ways to cope with your fears. Perhaps that unhealthy habit is drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes, or doing recreational drugs. Maybe you find yourself emotionally eating to deal with these bad emotions. It is important to your health that you try to put a stop to these bad habits and find healthier alternatives.

Finding a Solid Support System

Nothing has helped my life more than finding someone to depend on when times are tough. My spouse is incredible, he will happily hold my hand and breath through some of the toughest days with me. But I also have the most perfect best friend. She always seems to know when the walls are enclosing, and gleefully helps me out. She’s taken my children to the park, she’s literally pushed me out the door to go out to an event with her, and has always lent me an ear when I have needed to get my frustrations out. I couldn’t ask for a better person in my life. Find that person for you. When you have someone who understands you and accept what your anxiety can do, they are someone that you will always be able to turn to. They can be the person who goes to events or parties with you so you’re not alone, or someone you can call or text when you’re feeling your worst. You should always have one person or a small group of people that can provide the emotional support you need.

Writing in a Journal Regularly

Fix Social Phobia by Journaling

I truly can’t say enough good things about journals. There are days when your support system is great and they help you through those dark times, but other days you need to hash those feelings out into paper. It’s incredible how much it can help you. You can safely get all your feelings out, even if those feelings are something that someone might judge you for. You can tell your journal that you hate your kids today, or you want a hurricane to hit your house so you don’t have to clean up toys anymore. Your journal doesn’t judge. Writing in a journal should not replace other treatments in your life, but it definitely has a place, and shouldn’t be ignored. It’s a great distraction to your mind, you can unload all those negative feelings and boil them down to what is really triggering your anxiety. If you write merely five minutes a day, you’ll begin to notice the positive impact it has had in your life. The best part? There are no rules. It’s what you want, and what you need.
I hope these tips help you find a way to deal with some of the pain and fear you’re dealing with. 

Do you have any other great natural tips to share?

Sunday, September 17, 2017

My Kid Hates Preschool Now

The entire school year, last year, my sweet daughter was the only one to go to school. We would get to the school, and stop at her classroom door then give her a kiss and leave. Every day for months my three year old son would cry about missing his sister. When the time came for him to start school, we were so excited! He had wanted this so much, we couldn’t wait.

But then the first day of school came, and suddenly he didn’t like school anymore. He was scared, or perhaps didn’t want to do it solely because we wanted him to. I wasn’t quite sure, but I wanted to fix it. Here we are two weeks into the school year, and I think I have the solution to “I want to stay home with you!”.

First, it’s important to figure out what the problem is. Is your child being bullied, or harassed? Is he sad because he had such a wonderful weekend with you, and he’s not ready to leave? Perhaps school is simply too new and scary. Some mornings it’s because he’s hungry or tired. Especially with the younger crowd, there are hundreds of reasons why they might not want to go to school. Here are a few ways that I got through it with my three year old.

1. Take some time out of your day to be with your child. It might be hectic when you drop off and leave, and he feels abandoned, or he might be eager to tell you about his day and not get the chance. You can take this time to find out if there is something bothering them about school, whether there is some type of hardship he can’t get over himself, or whether he’s just nervous. I also love that I can take some time to talk with him and learn about his new friends. You can then use those new names as incentive to go to class in the morning. “Oh boy! We could see Grayson at school! Do you think he’ll be wearing a Batman shirt again today?” or “Maybe today you’ll go outside and play on the green turtle on the playground, are you excited?”. Knowing what gets him excited for school is a great way to encourage him to go.

2. Find out what excites him about school and bring it up on the way to school. Talk about those little favorites in the morning when he’s hesitant to get out of the car, and remind him that grown ups come back. Thank you Daniel Tiger for that tid bit. Here’s the song, we sing it four times a week!

3. Find out the schedule for the week, and talk about it. This is a lifesaver for me. Every week my kid’s teacher puts out an email about the tentative schedule for the week, so we discuss what they might do the night before, or in the car on the way. Painting is his favorite thing in the whole world, so if they’re painting he’s excited to go.

4. If your teacher doesn’t send out a schedule, get a fun calendar you can look at together with your child. You can identify stay at home days, at go to school days, so they can have a good routine of what to expect.

5. Make routine cards. I’ve done this for you, you can get a copy below. We walk through the steps we need to take to get out of the house in time, as well as ensure that he’s eaten his breakfast and gone potty before we leave. With a full belly and an empty bladder, we are less likely to struggle through drop off. I recommend laminating them so he can hold them, and feel confident he has completed them.

Remember that today’s struggles aren’t always tomorrow’s struggles. Reward the victories, and forget the defeats. Try to be positive, even when you’re the one with the screaming kid in the parking lot. We have all been there.

Here is a copy of your free routine cards, complete with cute little monsters on them.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

7 Best Gifts for New Moms (That Aren’t Lame)

This post may contain affiliate links


top seven gifts for new moms that arent lame

What the heck is a baby shower?! The baby isn’t even here yet!

Before I became a mom I had absolutely no knowledge of children, child rearing, or how difficult mothering a newborn would be. I was the youngest in my family, and when I graced my parents with my beautiful existence the majority of my extended family was already complete. My first child was the second newborn I had ever held in my life. I didn’t know anyone having children until I was in college. I was clueless when my husband joined the military and everyone around me was pregnant.

Luckily when I was pregnant, and when my first child was born I had lots of people around me who knew what a swaddling blanket was, thank goodness. We fell head over heels in love with swaddling our first sweet child, and I would still swaddle her today if she wasn’t well over the capacity of our beloved swaddling blankets. Since I had so many people around me who knew how to help, I didn’t feel like I was drowning. There were some people who didn’t know how to be helpful to us, and I didn’t know how to ask for help so they just came and held the baby, and that was fine. Once I had my second I was pro. I could ask someone to do my dishes, I could tell my husband I needed another prefold, and he knew exactly what to grab. It was bliss.

I know not all of you have children yet, so I put together a fun list of gifts to get for new moms that don’t suck. I mean, it was cool when my first baby was born and people brought over disposable wipes, but we are a cloth family. So we threw or gave away a lot of gifts I didn’t have time or energy to return. Let’s get to it.

Camelbak Eddy Glass .7-Liter Water Bottle, Aqua
1. Glass Water Bottle
This is especially true if your recipient is breastfeeding. I can’t count the times I asked my husband to refill my water bottle while I sat, useless, on the couch with our daughter. I loved having a straw because it decreases the amount of effort I needed to function. It’s rough out there. Make everything as easy as possible.

Lansinoh Disposable Nursing Pads, 60 Count.

2. Nipple Pads
I know. But trust me when I say, every new mom needs these. It is the worst thing to run out of, and the most likely to be forgotten at the store. If your new mom friend is breastfeeding, they also have these awesome ice packs for your nipples. Those poor things take a beating in the beginning. I LOVE reusable nursing pads, but in the beginning you would go through so many that you’d be doing laundry a few times a day to keep up. If they’re NOT nursing, then they’ll still need these. Your breasts will leak for weeks after birth even if you have no intention of breastfeeding. gift card design

3. Amazon Gift Card.
You can even print it at home, so you can have it all ready last minute. These are so helpful! It’s even better if they have Amazon Prime, or if you get them Prime, because you’re an amazing friend. My favorite thing about Amazon Prime is the video streaming. My children get their daily dose of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood from Amazon Prime. It’s worth it. You’ll be the coolest friend of all time ever if you get them this.

The Let Down Project Birthday Cake Lactation Cookies

4. Lactation Cookie Mix
You can buy these in a mix or as already made cookies. You can also buy muffins, add extra brewer’s yeast (for more breastmilk making punch) or get a double batch of the mix to help for even longer. They’re hand made, so you know you won’t be getting any unsavory fillers.


5. Take Her Dog For a Walk
If she doesn’t have a dog, then take her other kids for a walk, if she doesn’t have other kids, take her trash for a walk.

6. Dual Single Serve Ice Cream Machine
Can we please just take a second and bask in the fact that this is really something that exists? It MAKES ice cream for you, in single serve cups. And you can do two at a time, because husbands. OH MY GOSH. That is all.

7. Clean her house.
EVEN BETTER, would be hire someone else to clean her house, so you can sit with her and collectively look at this cute newborn.

There you have it. Seven great ideas gifts for new moms that can really be appreciated.

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Thursday, March 17, 2016

Saving Money as a Doctor for Stuffed Animals and Toys

My daughter wants to be a doctor. Specifically, a doctor for stuffed animals and toys. I'm sure that's familiar to any parent with Disney Jr and a child who loves TV at a specific time. I love when I bring her to the pediatrician and she amazes all the nurses with her knowledge of stethoscopes and checking heartbeats. She's given me HUNDREDS of shots over the last year or two, with a gleeful giggle each time.

For Christmas last year, we got her a great Doc McStuffins station, and lots of family got her more and more doctor's kits. It's great now that her little brother is a bit older, he loves to give check ups too. There are plenty of stethoscopes to go around so the fighting is minimal. For Halloween she was Doc McStuffins. We got her a costume to be a pet vet, and she went as that. It went great with her other Doc apparel. But sadly, her costume was ripped. She still has it, and wants to wear it often, but always notices the little rip in the leg of the pants. It wasn't made to last for longer than one play time, so it's been a struggle.

Enter, new labcoat! Although it's not pink and frilly, it has pockets! Kids love pockets. It's also much thicker fabric and better made. We sometimes add stickers to her new white lab coat so she can decorate it and love it a little more. At the end of the day I take all the stickers off and she creates something new the next day. 

These coats come in several sizes, so you get a great fit regardless of your child's age. We received the 2-3 year old size, and it fits my daughter fantastically. It's huge on my son, who is a year younger than her and on the opposite size of the growth chart but I know he will fit into it later. I think it will definitely last until he's old enough to really appreciate it also.

Here's the kicker. You could spend $25 on a Doc McStuffins lab coat, or even more if you're spending that money at Target. OR, you could spend TEN DOLLARS on this gender neutral, sized lab coat that will last for more than just one playtime / holiday. With the money you save you could get your child a great doctor's kit to go with their new coat too! I'm all about saving money and getting the most bang for your buck.

I received this product in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Last Minute St. Patrick's Day Decor

Last minute is my favorite way to do things. I do everything at the last possible second including making this craft for decorating my house. I even bought my daughter a clover shirt the day before St. Patrick's Day. Someday I will plan ahead. In the mean time, check out this simple last minute clover decor!

I love green. I painted my daughter's room green, I have green curtains in every room I can manage to get them into nicely, and I have green bedding. If something comes in green, it's safe to assume I'd love it. A holiday that's main color is green?! Sign me up!

As a Target stalker go-er, I noticed these pretty wooden shamrocks that were just begging for attention from me. I bought one, and spent a few days deciding what to do with it. Then my friend pointed out to me that I have an obsession with buying washi tape, but I never use it. Now that's ridiculous. I have used approximately 36 inches of washi tape in the year since I've started buying it. There's just so many pretty colors!

Needless to say, since I always have to be right, I decided this was a perfect time to use some washi for a project, and this is the project to do it with. So I went out and got some more washi and whipped this together in an afternoon. All you need is a few rolls of tape that match the scheme you're looking for, and scissors. Bam! Easy peasy last minute craft!