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Writing Yoga® Self-Care Practices for Caregivers

“There are only four kinds of people in the world. Those who have been caregivers. Those who are currently caregivers. Those who will be caregivers, and those who will need a caregiver.” - Rosalyn Carter

I’ve witnessed so many teachers and nurses dedicate all their time and energy to the people they serve while taking very little time to recharge. They became sick, frustrated and exhausted!  I realized that the work I do as a poet and yoga instructor could help drastically transform lives by just showing caring people simple yoga and writing exercises they can do each day. That is why I am passionate about teaching teachers and nurses the Writing Yoga ® method!

But I also know that parents, friends and family members also take on the role of teachers and nurses too. Sound familiar? 

Too often we think we need big chunks of time to exercise, mediate or process our feelings in a journal. If you have been following me for a while or have attended one of my workshops you know that this is not true! 

Here is my mantra for better health, energy and clarity: Sit, Write, Move, SWiM ©.  It means you take at least 15 minutes each day to sit quietly, write in a journal and move your body. The result is that you will "SWiM" easily through all of life's challenges. 

The pandemic changed us. Some were hit hard, suffered terrible losses and became sick. I am thinking of all of you as I write this.  I felt the need to reach out to you and let you know that you are not alone. 

Please know that you don't have to join a gym or sign up for a meditation class or buy a fancy journal to feel amazing. Give this short routine a try. Right now: 

1. Close your eyes and say, “I am____________________” (fill in a word that describes how you would like to feel. Ex. calm, healthy, strong, etc).  Say this phrase silently to yourself for about 5 minutes. Notice what you feel. 

2. Slowly stand up and stretch your arms overhead. Relax your shoulders and jaw (lots of us hold tension in those places!)  Slowly lower your arms by your side. Repeat at least 3 times.  Add any other movement that feels right to you. 

3. Break out a piece of paper or your journal. Write any observations you had about the way you felt or the things that randomly popped into your mind as you sat quietly and stretched. Don't judge your thoughts. That is the fun of this. It is for you to vent, be sad or even silly. This time is just for you. 

Try this practice for a week and see how you feel and what you noticed. Please reach out to others who are going through the same thing. If you wish, schedule a free 15 minute call to chat with me

We are in this together. 
Be well! - Stef


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