The noise and chaos of motherhood and the world around us is LOUD. It seems impossible to get still, much less quiet. Today I’m sharing 4 things will help you really begin to live in the present moment you have – right here, right now – and be a more present mom. This episode combines spiritual and practical application that is helpful for today’s Christian mama living in a noisy, busy world. If you struggle with being present and want to be a more mindful mama, these 4 tips will help you regularly get into the habit of “being where your feet are”. Maybe you struggle with anxiety, spiraling, constantly feel like you’re reliving the past, or worried about the future. Today I’m sharing how to practically create time and space for yourself in motherhood and 4 things to try in order to become more present.
In this episode I’ll share with you the importance of looking for pockets of time during your day where you can get still. Because even though you’re a mom now, you still matter. You deserve time to sit and just be. I want to help you cut through the noise and distractions of life in order to do just that!
This episode walks you through how to create a simplified morning routine. Join the challenge for group support and accountability!! I’ll see you in there.
Here’s the link to the article referenced for tip 1 & 3: Grounding techniques for anxiety, PTSD, and trauma (medicalnewstoday.com)
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FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPTION:
Hey friends. Welcome back to another episode of the podcast. I’m so excited that you’re here with me today. How about this new year? How’s it going? Hopefully it’s going okay. But if not, that’s okay. Life happens. It’s all right. At any moment, you can have a reset. Maybe you use this moment right now to reset.
Take a deep breath. You’re here right now with some headphones in, or maybe you’re listening while you’re driving. Let’s just take a deep breath in and out. Let it go. Let it all go. If you’re like, “Cason, we’re not even all the way through January and my life is a stressful chaotic mess.” This episode is going to be perfect for you. Also, if being more present and more mindful is part of your 2022 New Year’s goals or resolutions, you’re in the right spot.
So let’s get started with today’s episode. We’re going to be talking about four simple tips for becoming a more present mom. Who needs that in their life? My hand is up in the air right now. Me. I do, I need that. So let’s walk through these four simple things that you can start to implement every single day or when you can. It doesn’t even have to be every day, but consistently, however you do it, start to implement these four things and you will be a more present person.
You’ll feel more grounded, you’ll feel more centered and more mindful. We’re going to talk about why it matters, how to do it, all the things. Let’s go.
So I heard a saying not long ago to just be where your feet are. And as someone who has dealt with anxiety, my entire life, the concept of just being where my feet are… You know, like right now in this moment was just another reason as to why it’s so important to practice being present. It was that reminder for me be in this moment right now, because it’s honestly all that we have.
We don’t know what tomorrow is going to bring or the next hour, you know, 2020 showed us that. But we can rest in knowing that right here, right now, we have this moment. This, this heartbeat. And that just makes me want to like shout and praise God, because He’s the one who gives us that gift. Every breath, every heartbeat, every moment, every sunrise and sunset, every morning that we wake up with our kids and our families and all these blessings.
I don’t know about you, but I take for granted. And so I decided a few years back that I was going to do my best to practice mindfulness and be more in the moment. Because like I said, I’ve spent majority of my life being just swept away in this tornado of anxiety, this spiral. And for me, it has always been a fear of the future or a fear of the unknown. The what ifs, but sometimes it’s also looked like being stuck in the past and what happened last month or last week, you know, years ago.
But when we get into the practice of being more present, we stop and say, “okay, I’m going to be right here right now in this moment. I’m going to lean into peace. I’m going to lean into stillness and calm and all these things that are ours in Christ Jesus. And I’m going to be grateful for right here right now.”
Now I know as moms, that sounds all well and good, but meanwhile, our lives quite literally sound and feel and look like a circus. I want you to look for the moments of stillness though, like the seconds when your kids are actually getting along and playing together. Look for the moments when you are rocking your baby, or you’re watching them sleep.
Look for the moments of quiet, the stillness. Maybe you even take the loud moments, the chaotic moments, and just pause to be thankful for something in that moment, because there’s always something to be thankful for. Psalm 23 says, “you anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows, surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life.”
It doesn’t say surely I will chase after goodness and mercy all the days of my life, or surely I will look hard and not be able to find goodness and mercy. No, it says surely those things follow us, friend. Okay. And they do because He’s with us day in and day out dwelling within us. You know, I shared a little bit on socials about how, you know, November and December were kind of rough for me for various reasons.
And God really used, especially December, the whole time of advent and leading up to Christmas, as a ton of reminding me that He is Emmanuel. He has God with us. He is with me. He is with you. And it’s not just during the advent season. It’s not just for Christmas day. Like He’s with you always. He is dwelling within you.
If you know Him, He’s given us the Holy Spirit, but sometimes the noise of this world and the chaos of life, the distractions of everything around us drown Him out. So it’s understandable if you don’t feel like you ever hear from God or you can’t sit in stillness or calm or, or live in peace.
It’s because we live in a loud, busy world that tries to convince us to go, go, go, and do it all and have it all and be like this mom. And keep up with her and do what she’s doing and what Pinterest says I should be doing. But I want to challenge that and I want to ask what would happen if you just began to get quiet every single day?
What if you paused just even for 30 seconds, we’re not talking about a lot here. We’re not talking about an hour. 30 seconds to just stand or sit and to be still. And be still and know. And maybe you take some intentional deep breaths. You just allow God’s presence to overwhelm you in that moment. As you remind yourself, He sees you.
He knows you. He cares for you. And He loves you, right where you are in the mess of newborn life, postpartum life, toddler, life, teenage life. He sees you and He knows what you’re going through. He cares for you. And He loves you. All of these truths said the enemy tries to keep from you. He wants to keep you from hearing those things.
He doesn’t want you to remember them. He doesn’t want you to get still. So of course, you’re going to be distracted. Of course, you’re going to feel discouraged. The world’s going to be loud. But do you think that this week, even now, even today, that you could pause for just a moment and take some time to do that, and just reflect and remember the goodness of God that His love and mercy is following you?
He is pursuing you constantly. Okay. So now that hopefully you’ve had some spiritual encouragement because I love to mesh practical and spiritual. I believe they go hand in hand. So now that we’ve talked about some spiritual things, I want to give you some practical tips that you can try this week as you’re trying to become more present, you know, because I know life is loud and crazy. So I love to use grounding techniques.
You may have heard of grounding. You may have even tried some of these things, but I have found them to be so helpful for me in being more present. So I was going to give my best explanation and go on and on about all I’ve learned about grounding and how amazing it is and what I’ve learned and what I know.
But thankfully, there’s already so much out there on this topic. So I’m just going to read from an article that I found, and I’ll also link it below in the show notes. So you can click around, research, read up about grounding techniques. But they are strategies that can help a person manage strong emotions or even traumatic memories.
And I’m reading from the article here. So the purpose of grounding techniques is to allow a person to step away from the negative thoughts. Hello, me… Or flashbacks, which I also have had with different circumstances, but techniques such as these can decrease the intensity of a person’s feelings or trauma by distracting them using the five senses.
Like I said, this has been so helpful for me to use with anxiety because when you are anxious, when you are caught up in a spiral or, you know, you’re really just having a freak out is, how we can just label it. You’re not in the moment because you’re either thinking about what has happened or what’s going to happen.
You’re worried about those things. You’re not in the moment. And so using these grounding techniques, using the five senses can help you to focus on your present environment. It can help you to look around. And I’m going to explain it more, but maybe you’ve used this technique before. If you have, let me know.
The article goes on to say, “focusing on what you can observe in the present environment helps you detach from the past.” So when practicing grounding techniques, people can focus on the five senses: sight, touch, hearing, taste, and smell. This is how it works. You look for five things that you can see, four things you can touch.
Three things that you can hear, two things you can smell, and a one thing that you can taste. So I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve used, you know, five things I can see or looked for. Some things that I could smell or touch, listen to, because it is really a distraction and it helps bring me back to this present moment.
Right where I am right now. Right where my feet are like that quote said. And, you know, if you don’t deal with panic or anxiety, then maybe you’re like, “okay, what in the world? Like, why can’t they just snap out of it? Why can’t they just stop thinking about whatever it is they’re thinking about?” Anxiety doesn’t work like that. When you get swept up and swept away in the present and the past.
Excuse me. Or the future, you don’t just like snap out of it. It doesn’t really, it doesn’t really work that way. And so these techniques do help you to kind of come back into your body where you are right now in the moment. Another thing that, um, uh, a friend told me is to get an ice cube and hold it in your hand.
So that’s another sensory grounding technique, holding an object, like a rock or a leaf. I personally liked to use ice because it’s cold. It’s something about it helps your mind and your brain to kind of switch and think about the freezing cold ice cube that’s in your hand. So try that one if you haven’t tried that one. Other sensory grounding techniques, smelling food or flowers, listening to music or noise of traffic or whatever sounds you may hear outside.
The article goes on to say, “some people may prefer practicing grounding techniques outside. Since there’s more to see, hear, touch and smell, there’s also more freedom to move around. Experts suggest that grounding techniques are useful for people experiencing panic or trauma flashbacks.”
It says you can use these with a service provider or by yourself. There’s no harm in doing these alone. Super, super helpful. So that is the first thing. The grounding techniques help you to be more present. If you doubt it, if you aren’t sure, try it, see how it goes. Like what’s the harm in just trying, if you’re wanting to be more present and more in the moment?
Why not? First of all, you have to come back to your body and where you are, like the quote said, be where your feet are. So that’s the first step in getting present. Now, another thing that I like to do is create a buffer of time just for myself. So you need to be creating these little pockets of time for yourself. Even though you’re a mom, you still have your own experiences, your own emotions and thoughts that you need to process through.
These don’t have to be heavy necessarily. It doesn’t have to be something hard and difficult, but sometimes you just need space. You know, like, I mean, I know, you know, but creating little pockets in your day, just for you are another way to allow yourself to be more present. Because as you process through things that are running through your mind, you’re less likely to be focused on or distracted by all of these things when you’re spending time with your kids or your family.
So for me, this is during my morning routine, I can tell a complete difference in the days I get up consistently for some morning me time, do my thing before my girls get up. And then the days that I don’t. And this is just a little plug here. If you want to create a simple morning routine in your life, you’re just like, “you know, I want some time in the morning. I don’t know really how to start or where to start. I’ve never been successful. I’m not a morning person.” Okay. Me either. Like I tried and tried and tried, but when I started off with five minutes a day, It was a game changer. So if you haven’t already signed up for the free Five Day Challenge, go to heyitscason.com/challenge to sign up.
And then I’ll also link it below in the show notes. So you can get signed up, but you have to find some time for yourself during the day. You may have heard these called a mommy time out or something like this, but just get outside for a few minutes. Get the kids situated with a toy or an activity, or even screen time.
I mean, no shame here, but you need time for yourself. Because you matter, if you haven’t heard that in a long time. If nobody’s told you lately, you matter, even though you’re a mom. Even though your kids are your world, they are your priority, you would do anything for them. And you’re always making sure their needs are met.
You still matter too. Your needs matter too. And it’s not selfish. That is a lie straight from the enemy. Your brain is trying to tell you that you don’t matter. It, you know, it’s a lie. It’s not true. You do matter. And when you’re constantly putting yourself last and you’re never giving yourself a second to just rest and catch up and process, it leads to overwhelm and burnout.
You’re going to be super stressed. You’re going to be reactive and that’s not who you want to be. I know it’s not. Okay. So that’s number two. The third thing is breathing exercises, focusing on your breathing. I’ve taken this from an article as well. I will link it below. You can consciously inhale through your nose, exhale through your mouth.
It says it’s an effective strategy for returning to the present. You can enhance the focus of these breathing exercises by placing your hands on your abdomen and watching them move up and down with the breath. You can search these on YouTube and find a short one that you like. And just do that consistently.
Remember just like, keep it simple. And one thing that, you know, I know like breathing exercises, and come back to the breath… It can be very woo. It can be very out there. And as a Christian, sometimes I don’t know how to take things that the world offers. Something as simple as a breathing exercise. You know, we could get really technical here about like the breath and that being idolized, you know, and what not.
But I just want to say that something that God showed me earlier. Well, it was last year. Something that he showed me is that He has given us breath. Like He put the breath in our lungs. And so every time that you come back to the breath, maybe it’s just a simple reminder or a praise and a prayer. God, thank you for this breath.
Like, thank you for this gift. Thank you for life. You know, so when you’re doing these breathing exercises, some of the meditation videos, you’re going to find, I’m not going to lie to you when you search YouTube for meditation videos or breathing exercises, they can be kind of out there. And you know, it’s not, it’s not related to scripture or biblically rooted.
Like it doesn’t have a Bible foundation, most of these things. And so, what I like to do is, I like to take something that, you know, is helpful for you, practically speaking, and say, okay, how can I relate this in a spiritual way? God has given me the breath that fills my lungs. And so when I’m focusing on my breath, when I come to the breath, when I returned to the breath, it’s not about the breath.
It’s about the gift that God has given me. Okay. Sorry. I didn’t really want to go down that rabbit hole like way far down, but there are some things with like yoga and Christians and beliefs that people have and issues that Christians have. And I don’t, I don’t doubt any of that. I’m not saying, you know, that one’s right or wrong.
I’m just saying that for me, whenever I focus on the breath and breathing, I always bring it back to a thankfulness to God for that breath that He’s given me. So that’s another thing that you can try. And I saved the weirdest thing for last. Okay. Like if I haven’t already been weird enough, here we go.
Visualization is the last thing and it may freak you out or maybe it makes you feel better that I’m a weirdo just like you. But sometimes when I’m being mindful, I close my eyes. I take some deep breaths. I visualize myself diving off of this diving board. Okay. And I’m going exploring. I know right now you were like, what is this girl talking about?
Just, just stick with me. Okay. So I dive deep into the deep parts of who I am. Just please stick with me. There is like a picture here I don’t want you to miss. I visualize it as if it’s an ocean. So there’s oftentimes a lot of chaos in motherhood, right? Like a lot of noise, it’s really crazy and hectic and chaotic.
And this is like, if you imagine an ocean, that’s the top of the ocean, right? And ocean with tons of waves crashing into one another, you know. Like, does your life ever feel like the top of an ocean where it’s just like crazy and busy and it’s just, it’s chaotic? So my life can often feel like that I lived in the chaos for way longer than I care to admit. But as we take a dive, as we dive down…
We go deeper and deeper into the ocean. So the waves at the top are the most superficial part. They’re the most obvious, they’re the most visible, that’s what you see at the surface, right? So the chaos of your life is like the very surface of your life. It’s what you see at the surface. But as you go deeper, as you look, inward, deeper.
As you swim deeper in the metaphor here, you get further away from the waves. You’re going down, down, down. Like if you were to actually dive deep down into an ocean, as you get away from the waves and the noise, and you go closer to the bottom, you start to encounter stillness. So as we metaphorically dive inward, we begin to get to the core of who we are.
We start to get stuck. The deeper you go, the thicker the stillness gets, until you get so deep that eventually it’s as if nothing moves at all. That’s like what the very bottom of the ocean is. There’s such this sense of just stillness and calm and being. It’s almost like thick.
This technique is especially helpful if I ever feel panicked or anxiety. Like if I’m just about to spiral, I will sit and I will try to do breath work. I will do grounding techniques and then I will use the visualization. So try this sometime. I know, I know. I know it sounds super weird and you’re probably like, she is crazy, but if you try it, if you’re a person who struggles with anxiety or not being in the present, if you’re wanting to be more present and mindful, just try this.
I promise it will be helpful for you to get still, to create that sense of calm and peace in your life. So when I first started doing these things, I would just set an alarm on my phone. And when it went off, I would do it in that moment. You know, one of these things I just shared with you, you do what you can with what you have.
Look for pockets of time during your day. If you only have one minute while your kids are settled in, that’s great. It’s not about how long you do it. It’s just about the intention and it’s about consistency. So my favorite time of the day to be mindful is first thing in the morning. And then obviously throughout the day, I try to come back to the things that are focused on for that morning and that day.
I will link episode 29 below. And if creating your own simplified morning routine is something that is on your goals for this year, something you want to be more intentional about, be sure you listen to that. And join us for the free five minute morning challenge.
If you haven’t heard about it, we’re running a challenge. It’s going to be five days, five minutes earlier every morning. You can go to heyitscason.com/challenge to sign up or click the link below in the show notes. If you can just get up a couple minutes earlier before your kids, this is a great time to sit and set your focus for the day. Decide on one thing to be mindful of throughout the day.
And honestly, you could use so many things. So when you sign up for the challenge, you’re going to get a PDF that gives you a few check-in questions that you can use each morning to either think through or journal through, and a list of affirmations or reminders for your day. I pick one of these each day to be my focus.
And when I said I come back to, you know, what my focus is for the day throughout the day, that’s what I mean. Here’s the thing. Eventually these things will just become a part of your day. It becomes a part of who you are, but the first step is deciding to do something different and something new, which I get can be kind of scary.
So when you join us in the free Five-Minute Morning challenge, You will also be able to connect in a group of nearly a hundred moms and you can reach out there for support because you’re not doing this alone. You’re not the only one who wants to be more intentional, more present, more mindful. You’re not the only one working through these things.
And sometimes we just need to be reminded of that. Put these things into action, make a plan, figure out how to get in some time for yourself every single day. Don’t forget to join the challenge with us by clicking the link below in the show notes, I’ll see you in there. I hope that this episode was helpful for you.
I pray that it encouraged you and blesses you. You’re not alone, mama. You can totally do this. You’ve got this. You’re doing amazing. You’re doing great.